Another lobbyist in D.C.? No thanks

Last modified: 7/28/2010 12:00:00 AM
I had to respond to the letters from Bob Dorr and Marie Daniels (Monitor, July 26) condemning Katrina Swett for bringing up Ann Kuster's work as a paid lobbyist for the pharmaceutical industry. I do not know if they are aware of Kuster's work as a lobbyist for drug manufacturers or if they are intentionally misleading voters.

I have been a state representative for two decades and know Kuster was not paid by drug companies to distribute free pharmaceuticals. She was paid to do things like prevent small pharmacies from getting lower drug prices the same way big-box stores do. The facts are available if you look at the public record.

If Kuster and her supporters want to hype the good work pharmaceutical lobbyists do, they also need to take responsibility for her work which has caused higher costs on millions of prescriptions. Katrina's campaign has been far more restrained than I would have been.

Bridge Medication is a great program - all in the Legislature supported it. Forty-two other states have similar programs. What state would turn down free prescription drugs for the less fortunate? You didn't need a lobbyist to pass that bill.

Don't get me wrong: Concord lobbyists are not bad people. Some I consider friends - but that does not make them public policy advocates. The real public policy advocates are the 424 men and women paid $100 a year for their service in the House and Senate.

I applaud anyone with the courage to put their name on the ballot and run for office, but know you are in the public eye now. I like Annie Kuster, but I do not believe we need to send another lobbyist to Washington.



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