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December 16, 2017 01:11 PM UTC

Why I Support Jared Polis

  • by: NoMistakesJustHappyAccidents
Colorado is blessed with a host of qualified candidates running for Governor to replace John Hickenlooper. Here is my story to explain why I personally support Jared Polis.
Nearly 20 years ago, as a parent of three small children and an early childhood professional, I read an article about Colorado restricting Education students to a tiny list of acceptable majors including English, Math and Science. The proponent of the plan was a Big Oil and Gas corporate Republican named Bruce Benson, a well-known climate change denier, who believed public education was solely designed to produce workers who could count beans and label them — not as an incubator for innovation, creativity, social responsibility, multi-culturalism, interpersonal skills or intellectual curiosity.
I was grateful my birth state of MI had not had such a policy. As one of 9 kids who grew up in a working class home (my dad worked in an auto factory in Detroit), it was a high school history teacher that suggested I consider college. That teacher introduced me to his personal friend, Rosa Parks, who lived in Detroit at that time, and it changed my life. I went on to working to put myself through the most expensive public school in the nation — the University of Michigan. Had it not been for my social studies teachers who were passionate about history, psychology, foreign languages, social justice and the world around us — and who passed on that love to me — I would not have graduated from college and become a successful small business owner today.
While most of us were struggling with AOL dial-up in those days, there was a Wunderkid on the State Board of Education, Jared Polis. Jared was barely out of college himself and he had already been a hugely successful businessman who had literally put several industries on the world-wide web. Jared was the one who returned my call, commiserating about the short-sightedness of the then-current education policy under Benson’s leadership, and thanked me for being one of the roughly eleven people who actually read the State Board of Education minutes. Jared’s taking on Republicans like Benson on public education, while a still a young man himself, was nothing short of heroic.
Jared Polis could have walked away with his success, buying a yacht and sailing around the world, thinking of only himself, as so many, if not most, successful businessmen do these days. Instead, he invested his time, money, energy and love for Colorado into  educational start-ups and non-profits. In 2000, he started the Jared Polis Foundation, committed to “creating opportunities for success by supporting educators, increasing access to technology, and strengthening our community.” The schools he supported provided quality educational services to immigrants, street kids, pregnant teens and others who desperately needed them. One of my friends recently told me, “My nephew would never have finished high school had it not been for the New America school. They went above and beyond to make sure he made it.” Jared has literally made many thousands of kid’s lives better as a result of his generosity. Jared knows public education matters, and he fights for it everyday.
Not only that, Jared is a quiet and modest philanthropist, investing in progressive non-profits and actions that help every person in our great state (as well as in other states!), and he simply does not talk about it, nor ask for credit. If you do not know about the extent to which he has devoted his life to service, read The Blueprint: How the Democrats Won Colorado (and Why Republicans Everywhere Should Care) by Adam Schrager.
Since he started his public service, Jared has fearlessly stood on the side of just about every issue I care about — gender parity, marriage equality, protecting the environment, opposing the Iraq war, criminal justice reform, ethics in government, a free internet, services to people with disabilities, public education, and so much more. And while doing all of these things — he still makes himself accessible to his constituents through social media, technology and community events.
As an outspoken feminist in CO, friends have asked me why I am not standing with a woman candidate for Governor, which is a great question. I have nothing against any of the other candidates — in fact, I think there are a number of great options — and I always want more women in power in politics. Jared was raised by a feminist, in a household that values women and their accomplishments. Jared’s mother is a successful businesswoman in her own right. Jared is the only member of Congress I know, and the only candidate for Governor that I know, who has consistently hired women in key leadership roles on his campaigns and to work in his offices. I have every confidence Jared will represent me well — and with respect — as Governor, just as he has done in Congress.
Last, Jared Polis is a fighter who walks his talk. He cares about people, he puts his time and money and energy into fighting for them, and he is one of the most persistent, determined, tenacious fighters for his ideals of just about anyone I know. If his efforts are not working, he tries other means, and he will not quit until he has accomplished what he has set out to do. His lifetime of achievements is a testament to his determination.
My life in Colorado, and my children’s lives in CO, are better because of Jared Polis’s investments in our state. I believe Colorado needs a bold, ambitious, unapologetic Democrat to lead our state, so we can continue to be a light to other states and nations. Jared Polis has proven he is a leader who can do anything he sets his mind to doing — and I’m grateful what he sets his mind to is what’s best for all Americans. I am proud to support Jared Polis for Governor of Colorado!


8 thoughts on “Why I Support Jared Polis

  1. I'm also supporting Jared for much the same reasons as you. I visited one of his schools, in Gypsum, and was thoroughly impressed. All the students were immigrants and the all had individual education plans because no 2 of them were in the same place. In more traditional schools they'd have been less successful and left behind.

    If Cary can beat Jared I'll jump on that train because I also feel very positively about her


      1. Polis & Kennedy do appear to have significant progressive advantages over Johnson, Lynne and Ginsburg.

        Both have substantial lists of early endorsers. Each has demonstrated a commitment to public service and some administrative skill. I'm hoping the primary will sharpen them up as candidates for statewide office — they need to get beyond the "Boulder" and "Denver urban" labels.

    1. I like Cary… a lot. Does she have the proven track record that Jared does to win a statewide race? Has she put much skin in the game personally? Has she delivered firey speeches? If so, I would like to see/hear about it.

      I hear over and over that she is against ALL charter schools – even the charter schools the few that have actually worked — schools that do not drain public school funding and yet do help kids in areas where public schools have not been successful due to lack of funding — pregnant teens, ESL children of new immigrants, street kids, etc. Seems to me a more moderate message of  being against school vouchers, against corporations making a profit on schools of choice, and in favor of teacher's unions, while admitting there may be an occasional charter school situations where the community works together to help at-riks populations, is the way to go. 

      I want more than that, too. I want a track record of advancing renewable energy, on being against locking up people for drug charges, about standing up for lgbtq basic human rights, about fighting for net neutrality, and so much more. If this primary brings out Cary's firey loud side and she can bring that message to the masses, I will be thrilled.

      I haven't been around politics or this site much since I bought a small business 2.5 years ago, but I remember sitting through countless campaign meetings from 2010-2014 about how to water down the Democratic message for independents. DC pushed that strategy and they were all wrong. Instead of winning over independents, we lost millenials and Gen Xers and they turned against the Dems in favor of Bernie Sanders. The last election cycle proved Democrats were losing because we did not speak boldly and confidently about our progressive values. We need to ignore the DC "one size fits the whole country" b.s. and speak like we mean our values of inclusion/diversity, human rights, protecting the environment, defending public schools and making the rich pay taxes —  or millenials won't vote. These are not liberal values, these are American values! I feel like Jared has been doing that his whole career, and it is time to take our progressive values statewide. No more of this sounding like "GOP lite". OLD RULES NO LONGER APPLY.

      Losing Mark Udall in 2014 should have been a wake-up call to us all. You are missed, Mark!

      Wishing Pseudonymous and everyone here, "Happy Holidays!"

      1. Let's see.  She won the race for state treasurer in 2006, so she and Jared have won an equal number of those.  Fiery rhetoric isn't important to me– I'd prefer someone with workmanlike competence over someone who makes me feel like I've had a triple espresso– so that's not something I'd track.  As for "skin in the game," I don't know what that means.  If it's personal funds, I don't expect or particularly want that from my candidates (or we'd only have rich folks in office).  If it's effort, energy, and dedication, I'd say she does.

        I'm opposed to all charter schools, even those that "work."  Which, by the way, the schools funded by Jared's foundation don't, at least by the metrics the state keeps, and which charter advocates seek more of and not less.  Jared misses for me on education, and I have an opportunity to do better.  If I liked charter schools, I think I'd look to Johnston, who has a deep investment in education, rather than Jared, since I'm not sure where the two of them differ much.  To be honest, Cary's only differentiated for me by supporting similar views to mine on public education.

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