I’ve heard good things about Representative Bangerter from more than one source, but I actually got to meet her for myself yesterday. I’ve visited with other elected officials, and plenty of candidates. I can honestly tell you this was one of the most pleasant of such experiences.
I assume it has something to do with the way I was raised, but I’ve always been slightly intimidated, in a respectful way, of elected officials. I’m also nervous when it comes to talking to people that I’ve never met before. I can be pretty direct and assertive in writing, as some of you might have noticed, but I’m actually a very shy person. Representative Bangerter is not only, not intimidating, she has one of those personalities that just makes you feel comfortable. After the first couple minuets I could have been talking to somebody I’ve known since grade school. I even forgot to watch my language a couple of times, and that’s saying a lot. I caught myself, but she didn’t even blink. We just kept talking.
Montana needs more real human beings like Representative Bangerter in our state legislature. Of course I don’t expect anybody to take my word for it. You have an open invitation to talk to her yourself. I’m just recommending you actually do it. I’m one of the most nervous people you might ever meet, and I’m telling you, don’t be shy.
Now I’m sure you folks are curious as to what we actually talked about. No, I didn’t mention the Superbowl, we talked about politics. Representative Bangerter does know what we expect her to do. She has 2 terms under her belt already. However, unlike a number of other candidates I’ve spoken to in various races, representative Bangerter won’t bombard you with issues. She told me most of the voters she’s spoken to, only talked about one or two issues that were important to them. I’m not even in her district, but she still let me lead this aspect of the conversation. She was knowledgeably responsive to my questions, but she also gave an honest opinion on my perspectives. In fact one of the issues we talked about is going to be the main topic of my very next article, but it doesn’t have a place in this one.
This article is about the human being I met yesterday who just happens to be a public servant.
Our system of government was originally designed, with the expectation that regular folks would stand up to serve. Sure I understand the appeal of perceivable assertiveness. We do expect our representatives to argue our point of view, but they can’t exactly do that if they don’t know our point of view. Representative Bangerter doesn’t come across as timid or meek by any means, but she knows how to listen.
Before I wrap up this article, I have one more thing to convey. This is something I’ve never heard, from either an incumbent or a new candidate.
Representative Bangerter told me, she isn’t just there to make sure the opinions of citizens are expressed in legislation. She told me a lot of folks just call her to get help finding their way around the systems and programs we already have. One she mentioned in particular is the Department of Health and Human Services. If you’ve ever had any reason to deal with them, I don’t need to explain any further. Last I checked, that isn’t exactly in a representative’s job description, but that’s what I call a public servant.
Even if you’re not in a position to vote for representative Bangerter, I recommend looking her up anyway. We need more good honest folks in our state legislature, but we also need to hold on to the ones we already have.
Glenn W. Uncles Jr.
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