Democrat Gretchen Driskell and Republican Tim Walberg have been here before: They ran against each other in 2016. The incumbent Walberg won.
Yet there are reasons to believe, and hope, this year will be different. The political landscape, particularly in Washington, has become increasingly partisan.
Driskell wants to dial back the partisanship and focus on being a “voice in D.C. that understands the economy and challenges” of the 7th District.
For that reason, the LSJ Editorial Board endorses Driskell.
Driskell’s experience as non-partisan mayor of Saline for 14 years and two-term state representative in the Legislature has equipped her to serve a wider constituency in Washington. It’s clear she understands her district, the voters and issues they face.
Case in point: When asked about protecting the Great Lakes, her immediate response was about the algae blooms in Lake Erie. That is what’s most pressing to her constituents.
Among her priorities: affordable health care and prescription drugs; infrastructure investment including roads, clean water, sewer systems and high-speed rural internet; and early education programs that lay a foundation for future success for all children.
Incumbent Walberg has been predictably conservative, voting with his party on dismantling the Affordable Care Act and weakening the Environmental Protection Agency. These votes are not in the best interest of Michiganders.
Walberg also was notably inaccessible after his 2016 re-election, failing to hold in-person meetings with constituents and trying to control the messages when he did.
Elected officials are elected to represent the people of their district and must be accountable to them first.
Driskell is the best person to serve that role in the 7th District.
– an LSJ editorial