Shame on Alan Bates for whining, especially on the front page of the newspaper (Oct. 21)!

As a member of the Joint Ways and Means Committee he should be thoroughly familiar with each item in the budget and be willing to stand up for his vote instead of complaining and name-calling when his record is publicly revealed. If he is not familiar with the budget items nor willing to graciously accept criticism for his vote then he is doing a huge disservice to his constituents and he should remove himself from elected office. He owes Dave Dotterrer a public apology for the unfair and unjustified name-calling.

Vote for Dave Dotterrer, a Marine who doesn't whine. — Janet Eck, Ashland

We all hear the rhetoric in the campaigns and every candidate says it's all about jobs. Well, where are the jobs? Now is the time for politicians to finally step up, quit the bureaucratic games and create real family-wage jobs.

In the last session in Salem, the leadership had the supermajority and legislators like Sal Esquivel were ignored. They had a better plan but it did not work. Maybe if they had listened better and truly reached across the partisan aisle more people would be back to work instead of watching empty promises on TV. Sal fights for jobs. Sal Esquivel has my vote. — Brian Mayfield, Medford

This is just a reminder that Dave Dotterrer is running for state senator, not emperor of the universe.

He cannot single-handedly revive the economy, especially with the same tired old policies the Republicans have always advocated: tax breaks for the rich, giving money to the those who already have it and reducing regulations, i.e., laws protecting consumers, the environment, and workers. These are failed policies, but ones which Republicans continue to sell and Americans continue to buy.

Unfortunately, the price is exorbitant: a huge gap between the rich and poor, a crumbling infrastructure, mounting debt, cash starved schools, and lousy health care. So if you live in fantasy land, vote for delusional Dave Dotterrer and the rest of the Republicans. But if you prefer reality, vote for Alan Bates. — David Kennedy, Ashland

As a lifelong Democrat, I will not be voting for Ms. Howe's opponent, Sal Esquivel. However, neither will I be voting for Howe. The negativity of her campaign has appalled me. I feel that her tactics have focused on bad-mouthing her opponent rather than telling the voters about the positive reasons we should vote for her.

I know that she supports education, which I appreciate. As a teacher, though, should I be teaching my students that it is acceptable to achieve political victory by tearing down your opponent with every negative fact that can be dug up about that person? Should I teach them that winning and being successful is more important than presenting yourself and what you stand for with integrity and honesty? I think not. — Bruce Stanbridge, Jacksonville

This election we have the chance to elect a quality leader as Jackson County commissioner: John Rachor.

Looking at John's life, you can see that he is uniquely qualified to lead our county. He is a native Oregonian, served our nation as a member of the U.S. Navy in Vietnam and is a loving husband and father.

John ran a local business for over 30 years, employing hundreds of our friends and neighbors. He is a very active member of Search and Rescue, donating his time and helicopter to the effort. In addition, John has generously supported numerous community organizations that have helped make Jackson County a better place.

John Rachor is the candidate for county commissioner who has a plan for the future and a proven track record to get the job done.

This November, vote for John Rachor, a true friend of Jackson County. — Louise Nelson, Medford

As an older person and one who has deep roots (five generations) in the valley, I urge voters to support Jeff Golden for county commissioner and Alan Bates for state senator.

These men are bright, experienced, honorable and caring. They are clearly the compassionate professionals with business expertise who will best represent all Rogue Valley residents. — K. S. Smith, Ashland

First the right wing of the Supreme Court gave us GWB. That decision alone has killed thousands of Americans, from 9/11 to the two unpaid wars.

Their more recent folly is to allow unlimited corporate spending in elections. Guess who corporations love the most?

The right wing of the Supreme Court wipes out 30 years of campaign finance reform just before the mid-term elections. How convenient for the Republicans. Boy, if this doesn't make a skunk smell sweet.

Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., will be investigating impeachment for Chief Justice John Roberts, Republican. Justice Roberts has perjured himself under oath at his Senate hearing by swearing that he wouldn't overturn precedents. Well, if 30 years of a law isn't precedents, what is?

Justice Roberts decided this case in favor of corporations and Republicans, and now we know the case wasn't even before the court itself.

Man up America, vote Democratic. — Michael A. Long, Trail

As I look at the rhetoric going on in Southern Oregon on the political campaigns it drives me crazy that the spin doctors write copy thinking we will not look at the facts.

Alan Bates and his advisers want us to believe that he goes to Salem and does all these good things for his district. Fact is that Alan is voting just like the Portland liberals all the time. He has pushed for more unfunded mandates that a taxpayer can dig out of their pockets. He will pick on small businesses even though they are the lifeblood of his programs.

I don't know about you, but I need a break from the rhetoric and a new representative with a plan. I am voting for Dave Dotterrer. — Mary Owens, Medford

Though I am horrified by the barely legal doings of many multinational corporations, it really stings when it happens so close.

Sal Esquivel's "business" strategy, to pay property taxes only to avoid foreclosure on those properties, is shocking, and it affects all of us who live in Jackson County.

Is it possible that Mr. Esquivel doesn't know what our county property taxes pay for? If so, then how can he represent anyone? His once (but, quite possibly, not future) constituents are paying their taxes, and are grateful for the services they fund.

He says he "cares deeply" for his community; it's time to quit talking and prove it. Dig deep, Mr. Esquivel, and get current on all your taxes. Jackson County needs your share, too. — Gen Windsor, Talent

Please join us in voting for Eric Navikas for Ashland City Council.

Eric is a hard-working incumbent councilor who listens to others and works well with them. He is interested in bringing jobs to our community to make it more affordable to live in Ashland. This interest in affordability is coupled with an expertise in sustainability. Eric is a strong voice for sustainable growth and encouraging a sustainable economy. We know him to be honest and have a lot of integrity. Vote for Eric. — Mel and Sheila Canal, Ashland

Mike Morris represents everyday Ashlanders, whatever his opponents may say. That's clearly reflected in the money donated to the two candidates.

As of Oct. 21, Eric Navickas collected $2,259 and Morris $2,935. But the difference is, 50 percent of Navickas' total came from seven donations over $100 each, and three of these came from out of state. So two questions: Why does Navickas accept out-of-state donations, and how much other support does Navickas get from people who don't live here? — Suzanne Frey, Ashland

Karen Blair is running for City Council, Ward 2. She is a Medford native, a civic volunteer and Realtor.

She knows Medford and is committed to its improvement. She will be a good representative for the residents of west Medford. — Kathy Hathaway, Medford

What a plate we are being served this year — a state representative who regards multi-year delinquent property taxes as a "business decision," a gubernatorial candidate who took a $350,000 tax deduction for donating his home to firefighters, and so on.

We have a great local candidate who stands well above such questionable things. Jeff Golden accepts no contributions from PACs, corporations or unions — only from individuals. In office, he will be beholden only to the citizens of Jackson County.

Jeff has mailed no "hit pieces," unlike many running for office this season. Jeff's website reveals his thoughtful approach and good ideas on local issues — I urge everyone to check. His endorsements by local leaders active over many years — Republican and Democratic — speak to his long-established skill and fairness in dealing with community issues. I strongly urge a vote for Jeff Golden for county commissioner. — Charles Sinclair, Medford

This election will be one of the most important ones in our history. Our president is fundamentally changing our nation and I don't think the things he is doing are good. How's hope and change (deficit spending, socialism and hidden agendas) working out for you and your family?

We need to elect people who are willing to undo the damage he's done and keep him from doing anymore damage. Elect people who are pro-life, constitutional in outlook, moral and willing to lead us in a godly direction.

I might also mention, we need a big turnaround in the way we spend our money! We really need to put our people back to work. Please vote! — Gordon DeVos, Medford

On May 15, 1990, the Ashland City Council endorsed the Valdez Principles and publicly affirmed that it was their job to act as responsible stewards of the environment. In the 20 years since, many city councilors have failed to honor those principles.

It's our good fortune now to have Eric Navickas on the City Council. He has always understood what it means to be a responsible steward of our environment and why a healthy environment makes Ashland a more sustainable community. That's why he has worked so hard to protect Mount Ashland, our source for fresh drinking water, from the unnecessary and destructive development that could result if an aggressive expansion of our ski facility were given the green light. We're voting for Eric, a dedicated steward of our environment. — Selene Raffel and Keith Bedard, Ashland

This letter is in support of Jeff Golden. Among his many considerable talents is listed author.

I have read "Forest Blood" and "As If We Were Grownups." The first book is historical fiction involving the conflict between loggers, environmentalists and big business. The second book could and should be used as a guidebook for politicians. However, at the same time it could be classified as fantasy, because it suggests that politicians tell the truth and treat citizens like adults. Several examples are given in the form of speeches dealing with national security, energy, health care and several other vital issues.

Jeff Golden tells the truth and has good ideas. I have already voted for him and I am urging you to do the same. — Jim Verdieck, Medford

We need to keep Eric Navickas on the Ashland City Council. I have known Eric for years and have always been impressed with his honesty and integrity.

He brings to my mind the well-known speech by Polonius in "Hamlet": "To thine own self be true and it shall follow as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man." Eric is true to himself and true to his beliefs. He's compassionate, enthusiastic and hard-working and is willing to listen to the concerns of all. Please join me in voting for Eric Navickas. — Nancy Spencer, Ashland

Remember Alan Bates' poor environmental record when he supported Oregon's Cougar Management Plan, HB 2971?

This unpopular bill overturned the voice of Oregon voters, who on two occasions voted not to allow the cruel practice of hound hunting of cougars. He ignored public opinion and sided with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, a well-known advocacy group for trophy hunters, and public lands ranching interests.

Current law rightly allowed for hunting "damage-causing" cougars, but not indiscriminate and random slaughter by deputized hound hunters. Bates overturned biologically sound law under the guise of human safety ... though there has never been an attack on a human in Oregon's history. He who ignores voters should not get votes. — Robbin Lacy, Talent

I received a mailer from the National Rifle Association telling me Dudley was the right choice for governor to protect sportsmen. I had to laugh out loud.

Dudley likely knows as much about fish and wildlife management as I do about running triangle offense in the NBA. This mailer must stem from the misguided paranoia that because Kitzhaber is a Democrat, he must have secret motives to take and destroy our guns. Wake up, NRA!

Seriously, John Kitzhaber is the right choice for sportsmen and responsible management of Oregon's natural resources. He is endorsed by a wide variety of resource groups, including timber companies and the Northwest Sportfishing Industry Association. Kitzhaber has extensive experience in fish and forest management and has pioneered grassroots natural resource stewardship with the Oregon Plan for Salmon and Watersheds.

If you are a concerned sportsman or woman please join me in voting Kitzhaber for governor. — Ian Reid, Talent

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