Friends and supporters joined the GOP faithful at Edmonds’ Cafe’ de Paris on Tuesday evening to help launch first-time office seeker Jeff Scherrer’s campaign to represent the 21st legislative district in the state House of Representatives. He is campaigning for the seat currently held by Lillian Ortiz-Self (D).
Scherrer, a 10-year Edmonds resident and native Washingtonian, moved to the Puget Sound area with his family in 1962. His parents were politically active, and young Jeff followed suit.
“My parents were Democrats, and I still remember parading in front of our house carrying signs campaigning for John F. Kennedy,” he said. “And I’ll never forget that terrible November day when I was playing in the B.F. Day Elementary School play yard and heard he’d been assassinated.”
After graduating from Seattle’s Lincoln High School, he worked in sales and distribution, eventually taking $1,000 he’d saved to form his own computer software and hardware business. Within seven years the business had annual sales of $5 million and created jobs for 17 employees.
He moved to Edmonds in 2004, purchased a home, and began hosting international students through the Edmonds Community College home stay program. To date he has hosted more than 100 students for periods ranging from a week to two years.
“I never really thought about running for political office,” he said, “but over the past few years I’ve watched government increasingly losing touch with the voters, and it’s bothered me more and more. This year I reached my tipping point, and decided it was time to stop thinking about it and start doing something.”
Scherrer cites two events that made the difference and pushed him to make the decision to run for office. “One was when the Legislature overturned the voter-approved 2/3 supermajority to raise taxes. The other is Gov. Inslee’s advocacy of an additional gasoline tax of $1.17 per gallon,” he said. “The time has come to fix this disconnect between the voters and the government.”
In addition to keeping taxes low, Scherrer advocates taking measures to improve the business climate in the state, foster education by easing administrative restrictions and “allow teachers to do what they do best: teach.” He opposes raising the minimum wage because of the negative effect it will have on businesses and jobs.
Scherrer concluded by reiterating his position that Olympia has fallen out of touch with the voters, that the time has come to get our economy moving again, and that encouraging individual entrepreneurship and creating a business-friendly environment is the way to do this.
“A rising tide lifts all boats,” he said. “Join me and let’s work together to bring the 21st District into the 21st century.”
Learn more about Jeff Scherrer at his website here.
— Story and photo by Larry Vogel