I’ve known Monica Vernon and Brad Hart for years. I voted for Vernon for mayor because of her decades of dedication to Cedar Rapids. This dedication lead to her spearheading the creation of the Madge Phillips Center. During her eight years on the City Council, seven of them as mayor pro tem, I saw first hand her dedication to Cedar Rapids.
I worked closely with Vernon to oppose the closing of part of Second Avenue for a medical building. Vernon and I both supported the new facility, but not the closure of any part of Second Avenue. We lost that battle and now most of the downtown road issues can be tied to that decision. You learn more about a person in the battles you lose than the easy victories.
While her fight against the partial closure of Second Avenue earned her my vote, I did not personally oppose Hart until Monday. In June 2014, Hart switched from Republican to Democrat in order to vote for Vernon in the Democratic primary for Congress. Hart knew Vernon would make an excellent Congresswoman and he was right. However, after Vernon earned 10 percent more votes in the recent election, Hart went negative against Vernon in his interview with Todd Dorman. He criticized Vernon as a partisan politician and claimed he wasn’t. Vernon didn’t stoop to Hart’s level. On Monday, I received a push poll, which Hart’s campaign authorized in an effort to denigrate Vernon. Please don’t reward Hart’s dirty campaign tactics.
I cannot stay quiet about the race for mayor any longer. Our community needs a problem solver who is also able to speak with compassion, empathy as well as authority and integrity.
I am supporting Monica Vernon for mayor because I believe she has what it takes to work with all people and all neighborhoods to lead this city to a better tomorrow.
When I first got to know her, I was drawn to her caring attitude as well as her listening skills. She was not afraid to talk with me about big issues that were facing the children in Cedar Rapids and she also asked the important questions about individual issues and problems working families were facing. She proved to me that she understands that this community will become better one person, one family at time.
She served eight years on the Cedar Rapids City Council and six of those years as mayor pro tem. She has the experience and the passion to be a great mayor for all of us. But more than that, she can work with anyone and when she starts something — she gets the job done. She cares about fixing our streets, good jobs, flood protection, libraries and parks and she will work with our schools, too. Cedar Rapids is a very good place to live and work. With Vernon as our mayor, we can be even better.