Posted by: sweeneyblog | September 27, 2012

Rep. Vincent Buys’ Record

Last week, I did a blow-by-blow report on Rep. Jason Overstreet’s record. If you haven’t seen it, you really should. Now I take an equally close look at Rep. Vincent Buys’ time in Olympia.

In most cases, he votes lockstep with his seatmate, Jason Overstreet. They both voted against protecting our children from contagious diseases by lowering the immunization requirements for schoolchildren (ESB5005). They both voted to allow toxic toys to be imported into our state (EHB2821). They both voted for intrusive government telling you what gender of person you are allowed to marry (SB6239).

Vincent Buys addresses a fundraising letter to supporters.

But what helped break Vincent Buys out of the mold was his brutal record on voting against women and children. He voted against allowing low-income women on Medicaid to have access to federal family planning dollars (SB 5912). It was unclear if he voted against it because it was birth control, or because it helped the poor.

He was one of the extreme few who voted against a bipartisan foster care program targeted at reducing crime (HB1128). Again, voting from a super-minority, he voted against creating a work group within our educational system to combat bullying and harassment (HB1163). At a time with soaring student suicides, the fact that he would turn his back on our vulnerable students is appalling.

Personally, the most shocking vote I found was Buys shielding child abusers (HB2331). I tried to figure out how to write about this in a more neutral manner, but this was really disappointing. Buys voted against a bill that would have made ignoring child abuse or neglect a crime. Usually these requirements apply to law enforcement personnel and teachers, but this bill would have expanded that definition to include some employees of non-profits and for-profit companies. This straightforward and decent proposal would have saved lives. Period. It would have helped change the culture of silence surrounding child abuse and made a giant stride toward justice, and  Buys voted it down.

So what did he do? What did Buys think was worth his time? In his whole two years, with two sessions and several special sessions, Buys has managed to pass exactly two bills that he sponsored, and one was partially vetoed. The bill (HB1467) that tackled the definition of a water well seemed innocent enough. His other bill (SHB1538) dealt with tracking livestock health inspections and passed with bipartisan support. The rest of his legislative efforts are, frankly, pretty dull. License plate registration, motorcycle theft, and water transfer protocols.

During his entire time in Olympia, he did not sponsor a single jobs bill and he voted several of them down. I’m just left with a quote from a great letter to the editor in the Cascadia Weekly yesterday, “At a time when we desperately needed someone with sway and influence to bring resources to our community, Rep. Buys voted against infrastructure bills, job bills, grants for early education, funding for schools, funding for roads and funding for a whole range of basic functions of government. Our communities needed a champion and instead, they got a bench-warmer.”

This November, help elect a champion. Vote Matt Krogh for State Representative!


Responses

  1. The fact that Buys replaced Kelli Linville who was, at the time, one of the more effective and influential members of the state legislature makes his record all the more disturbing.

    • You can say that again. Buys wasn’t simply a bench warmer, he was a shameful lump on the proverbial log.

  2. [...] trivia – when I was looking up campaign expenditures on the PDC website here, I noticed that Rep. Vincent Buys purchased an iPad with his campaign dollars. I think someone should convince him he really needs to [...]

  3. [...] trivia – when I was looking up campaign expenditures on the PDC website here, I noticed that Rep. Vincent Buys purchased an iPad with his campaign dollars. I think someone should convince him he reallyneeds to [...]

  4. [...] Setting aside the presidency, of all the close races this year (Inslee/McKenna, Krogh/Buys, McClendon/Overstreet, I-502, etc), if I could only win one of those races which would it be? Vote [...]

  5. [...] on during the debate, I heard that Rep. Vincent Buys promised to raise taxes. I am eager to review the footage when it is posted on [...]

  6. Vincent Buys: “I have been criticized for not supporting all the budgets brought to the house floor. There is a reason for this, and it involves accountability. One of the numerous reasons for my persistent vote against these budgets was the diversion of funding from the environmental cleanup account known as the Model Toxics Control Act account. Here in Whatcom County, we have numerous cleanup projects, such as the Bellingham Bay waterfront, which rely on funding from this account. Our projects are perpetually placed on hold while these funds are raided by the majority party for their own pet purposes.Note that I voted to support both capital budgets as well as the related bond bills. These budgets have provided the funding to replace the aging Meridian High School buildings as well as the Ten Mile Creek Elementary and Irene Reither Primary project, which is going on currently. These projects represent a significant investment in our community, providing construction opportunities for local companies and their employees at a time when the construction industry is struggling. These projects will provide our students with safe, healthy schools and continue our investment as a community in education.”

    Read more here: http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2012/10/14/2724276/buys-built-relationships-supported.html#storylink=cpy

  7. I’m sorry but that excuse doesn’t wash with me. If you don’t like one particular part of the budget, you introduce an amendment to remove that part. I have trouble believing that if Rep. Buys was SO committed to jobs, and funding education that he couldn’t overlook one little budget line item?

    • Well, perhaps instead of assuming, you can just ask! He’s very easy to get in touch with, as I’ve contacted him a few times myself. I don’t see eye to eye with Vincent on every issue, but he will listen and give you answers. Just because something doesn’t “make sense” to YOU doesn’t mean it’s going to be a bad decision in the long run. If you think you have a better plan, share it with him! One person can’t possibly have all the answers.

      • I have shared my thoughts with him, since his is my representative, but I think you miss my point. He had multiple opportunities to vote for funding our schools, for shovel-ready jobs in our community and for protecting our most vulnerable and at all of these chances, he voted NO. That isn’t a few technical objections, that is a pattern of behavior that does not represent the values of the 42nd district.

  8. [...] thoughtful and compassionate advocate for Whatcom County. Also, his opponent has made some truly atrocious votes in the last two years, but mainly I’m just excited about seeing Matt take our values to [...]

  9. [...] favorite, no surprise, is this ad highlighting Vincent Buys’ record in Olympia and promoting Matt Krogh. Check it [...]

  10. [...] we always?) you can discover that Matt Krogh paid more to his campaign staff ($7,750) than Vincent Buys ($5,645) while Jason Overstreet seems to have no campaign staff at all except for a treasurer. [...]

  11. [...] there is precisely one state legislator that has a record more extreme than Jason Overstreet and Vincent Buys. His name is Matt Shea out of Spokane and his race recently went from “Not Even Close” [...]

  12. [...] except . . . one of the people who represents Ferndale in Olympia: Jason Overstreet. Yes, even Rep. Vincent Buys and Sen. Doug Ericksen found it within themselves to fund a brand new jail for their constituents, [...]

  13. [...] our Whatcom County representatives so far. Last year, I did articles detailing Jason Overstreet and Vincent Buys‘ records. This year, I plan to do a running update on what bills the 40th and 42nd [...]

  14. [...] bipartisan effort. A common sense solution to a problem in our county. Naturally, neither Rep. Vincent Buys or Rep. Jason Overstreet’s names are anywhere near this. They aren’t sponsors, and I [...]

  15. [...] the other end of the political spectrum, Rep. Vincent Buys sent out an email recently toting his anti-women’s choice [...]

  16. [...] Overstreet refused to see any of his constituents that were involved with Planned Parenthood but Rep. Vincent Buys made the time to talk to them. He gave them a lengthy lecture about the importance [...]

  17. [...] should not be a surprise to anyone who has read my reporting on Rep. Overstreet‘s and Rep. Buys‘ legislative agenda. Whether it is mandating that County bills be paid in gold doubloons or [...]


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