Issaquah, WA, July 31, 2018 – Without explanation, Dino Rossi’s campaign backed out of his commitment to participate in a candidate forum hosted by the League of Women Voters this evening. The forum would have been Rossi’s first and only appearance at a public forum since launching his campaign last fall. In response to Rossi’s absence, leading Democratic candidate Dr. Kim Schrier released the following statement:
“Dino Rossi has dodged every single candidate forum and refused to host public events for the entire primary race. For nearly a year now, Rossi has been asking for our votes, but refusing to answer our questions. The fact is: Voters in the 8th District are tired of politics as usual. After Dave Reichert wouldn’t hold town halls or defend his votes, I stepped up to bring the voices of my patients to Congress. I have run a transparent, open, issues-focused campaign. But my Republican opponent seems more concerned with playing politics and tip toeing around issues than representing our district.
“I’ve been calling on Rossi to say where he stands on issue after issue this entire campaign. Earlier this month, I invited Rossi to a public debate. I arrived, along with a room full of 8th District voters, ready to talk about basic issues that matter to families in our district – healthcare, education, gun safety, and immigration. But Rossi didn’t have the political courage to even show up.
“Rossi thinks that by staying silent, voters will fall for his ‘compassionate conservative’ sham. But we know better. For nearly three decades, Rossi has been touting his far-right positions. We know exactly where he stands.
“Until Rossi comes out of hiding, nobody should assume that his positions on key issues have changed. To make things easy, we’ve put together an overview of Rossi’s stances on five top issues that our future member of Congress will have to tackle in DC. I have spoken ad nauseam on each of these topics. Voters know exactly what I think and how I will approach these issues in Congress. But they’re left wondering: Where’s Rossi?”
Dino Rossi on Healthcare:
Rossi wants to repeal the ACA, which would gut health insurance for 32,500 8th District residents and remove protections for 300,000 people in the district.
Rossi has opposed using government funds to make healthcare more affordable. He voiced strong opposition to the Children’s Health Insurance Program expansion. He opposed efforts to expand CHIP, which would have covered 72,000 uninsured Washingtonian children. And then he inaccurately and offensively said, “the majority of new children that are going to be coming on are either illegal or they currently have health insurance from the private sector.”
Dino Rossi on Education:
Rossi has voted:
- To lower public school funding
- To lower higher education funding
- To create 70 charter schools
- To exempt religious schools from the minimum requirements that private schools must meet
- Against anti-bullying policies in schools
Rossi opposes paying teachers more. He wrote in an op-ed that raising teacher pay “is no way to provide Washington students with a quality education.” His 2003 budget suspended cost of living raises for teachers.
Dino Rossi on Gun Safety:
Rossi has not spoken on gun safety, but the NRA spoke for him when they endorsed Rossi in 2010: “During his time as a Washington State Senator, Dino Rossi supported pro-gun efforts and was always “A” rated by NRA-PVF. Rossi supports national right-to-carry reciprocity.”
Rossi says he’s “willing to listen and talk with anyone who wants to work in good faith to advance solutions to violence that are effective and Constitutional” on gun safety, but has not taken definitive stances on real steps toward gun safety reform, like universal background checks.
Dino Rossi on Women’s Health:
Rossi is anti-choice. He once suggested America reinstitute “homes for unwed mothers” like they had “90-100 years ago” as an alternative to abortion. He fought against a woman’s right to make her own decision in Washington state, and he has opposed federal funding to reduce the unintended teen pregnancy rate, improve access to family planning services, and require health plans to cover birth control.
Dino Rossi on Immigration:
Rossi supported a border wall way back in 2010. At a campaign event in 2010, Rossi said, “We need to actually have a physical barrier. Before we start doing other things we need to have a physical barrier. A tall fence with a high gate—and that is really one of the keys.”