Young people are known for calling a spade a spade, and I am no exception. My teachers at Colchester High School have taught me to be honest and provide fair evidence to my findings. I believe these, along with my independent mind, make me uniquely qualified to commentate on political matters.

After watching the Democratic forum for Colchester’s 9-1 House district, a few things became evident to me. The difference between the two Democratic candidates for House, Jim Condon and Curt Taylor, could not be more different. Let’s first begin with incumbent Jim Condon, a 14-year veteran in the House. During the forum, he described himself as a “fiscal conservative,” “blue collar Democrat” and said “taxes are too high for Vermonters,” but do these statements hold any merit? An examination of Condon’s voting record shows he is surprisingly liberal on spending, contradicting his statements in the forum. He voted against H.184 that would have lowered license fees for small businesses. He voted for the state budget that increased spending and taxes as well as voting against H.489 that would have decrease taxes for middle class Vermonters. Fiscally conservative? Clearly not. Is his voting record hypocritical to his statements in the forum? Absolutely.

Now let us talk about Curt Taylor, the other Democratic House candidate for the district. During the forum, his responses contradicted Condon’s often and more than any two candidates of the same party should. While Condon was saying Vermonters were taxed too much, Taylor said he would “increase income taxes” as well as “consider additional taxes on services”. He also touted his record on the school board, saying he often was the lone voice for a higher budget, even among Democrats. Most would consider these statements to be political suicide, but Taylor spoke his mind. The only question that remains is do Colchester residents agree with more taxes and spending? Only the voters will decide.

Jace Laquerre

Colchester