Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Meet Utah's Next Big Thing, Congressman Mia Love

Mia Love is now a household name since her stellar speech yesterday at the Republican National Convention opening night.
Mrs. Love is running for congress in Utah's fourth congressional district. The only one currently in the hands of a Democrat, Jim Matheson.
Although not for long for Rep. Matheson.
Mrs. Love is, if you want to go there, a minority, within a minority, within a minority.
What do I mean?
Well, the obvious is Mrs. Love is Black. The daughter of Haitian immigrants that came to the United States for the proverbial better life. They got it and then some. And got to see their daughter graduate the University of Hartford. What is wonderful is the story Mrs. Love tells about her dad telling her this after her college orientation:

 "Mia, your mother and I never took a handout. You will not be a burden to society. You will give back."

Understand that these people were from Haiti, the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere. They could have easily gone the dependency route was they arrived in the United States in 1973. But they did not and instilled that important value in their daughter.
The second minority is being a Black member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
Understand that until the late 1970s, the Mormons did not allow Black men to rise in the lay-ministry that separates the Mormons from other Christian denominations. Since  seeing the light and really understanding the Holy Bible, the growth of Mormons, especially Blacks, is very impressive. But in the United States, there are really not that many Black Mormons.
And the third minority is being a Black Mormon woman. No doubt on that one.
And roll it all together and this is all happening in Utah, one of the most White and religious states in the nation.
OK, so what makes Mrs. Love think that she can be a great congressman? Hell, just a congressman?
Well, she is mayor of her home town, Saratoga Springs, Utah.
Saratoga Springs?! Never heard of it.
Seriously, I never heard of it until yesterday.
But she has been mayor of a town basically built from scratch.
Saratoga Springs was incorporated in 1997 and according to the 2000 census, there were but 1,003 people in the whole town. But by 2010, the population exploded to 17,781. A huge increase. And as a city council member, Mrs. Love did change the way taxes were collected from agriculture to a municipal tax. And when there was the economic debacle of 2008, taxes were not raised but expenses cut. And the city has a AA+ bond rating, the highest for a city of the size of Saratoga Springs.
And what guides Mrs. Love's political positions? According to her own words:

"Is it affordable. Is it sustainable. Is it my job?"

And Mrs. Love believes in fiscal discipline, limited government and personal responsibility.
Pretty conservative and Republican, isn't it?
Yes, it is!
And to understand a little something of the town she is mayor of, it is in Utah County, the most Republican county in the United States. And like the rest of the state, probably very White. And yet this woman has been elected mayor of her home town.
I always believe that is very easy for a minority to win in gerrymandered districts in which their particular group is the majority. The real test for a minority person is to run and win where they are nowhere near the majority.
Ask Rep. Allan West. Or Rep. Tim Scott. Both Southern, Black Republicans that ran and won in pretty White districts. Oh, and Rep. Scott? He only defeated one of Strom Thurmond's sons in the GOP primary in 2010.
How about Nikki Haley, governor of South Carolina? An Indian-American. Same for Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana.
And how can we forget Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida? And soon to be Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas?
And, God willing, we can and must add Mia Love to that list. She will make an outstanding congressman and set the old Black establishment back on its heels. I would love, no pun intended, when Congressman Love joins the Congressional Black Caucus as she has promised to do for her to be right next to the Devil herself, Rep. Mad Maxine Waters, and as Mrs. Love says, "take that thing apart from the inside out”. Of course she can start with Rep. Mad Maxine.
Here is where you and I can help Mrs. Love out to not just fight but win the Utah fourth congressional district. And if you missed the speech, it is right here. Mrs. Love made more sense in four minutes than a certain occupier of the White House has made in four years.
Lets all work together to make sure this political studette can get to Washington. President Romney and Vice-President Ryan will need people like Mia Love to pursue the reform agenda.

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