By Observer Upload March 10, 2014 08:51 am


Hopkins: Hard work, not ballot measure needed

To the Editor:

I am responding to Ray Randall’s editorial “A better way to elect commissioners.” He makes a good argument as to why political parties should not have a part in the election of our county commissioners, but I differ. 

Our Constitution made no mention of political parties, but parties developed early in our national history as a means for those with similar beliefs to gather and support those who held the same beliefs. 

I agree with Mr. Randall that the election of a sheriff, clerk or treasurer should be nonpartisan. For the most part they do not create and vote on programs and policies that are supported by our tax dollars. However, our commissioners do. If an individual files as a Republican or a Democrat I can be reasonably assured what his/her philosophy is concerning how our taxes are raised and spent. Also, due to party affiliation I will know their political philosophy on the size of government, balanced budget, right to bear arms and school choice.

Let’s get to the bottom line. The Democratic Party of our county does not believe they can get representation as county commissioners. Therefore, they want a ballot measure which ensures those running as a commissioner will not be identified by party. 

Why can’t Democrats win? Could it be their political philosophy? If the Democratic Party wants to win in Union County, then work hard to convince the majority of voters that your positions on governance are the best for the citizens of the county.

As to independents, nonpartisan and other parties, get involved and get on the ballot under your own banner. If you have a better philosophy of government, bring it to the people. If you have better ideas, you might even get elected.

Doran Hopkins





Smith: U.S. should adopt Reagan policy with Russia

To the Editor:

A U.S. solution to Putin’s unbridled aggression in the Crimea is to apply the Reagan Doctrine that was applied to Ghadafi in Libya in the 1980s: Bomb his house and kill his kids.

Just saying.

Nick Smith

La Grande



Knopp: Area fortunate to have top notch health facility

To the Editor:

I recently had the occasion to begin an ordeal in the emergency room at the Grande Ronde Hospital and was subsequently Life Flighted to a Portland hospital for about a 36-hour stay.

I found the Grande Ronde Hospital’s staff to be most compassionate, competent and efficient.

The nurse who I promptly met in triage that stayed beyond her shift until I was in the ambulance en route to the airport. The MRI technician who had gone home but promptly returned when I needed that service. The CT scan technician who performed that service but then assisted with the MRI as well. Dr. Paige who was quick and thorough in his diagnosis and persistent in persuading the Portland hospital that my condition needed their expertise. Dr. Holocek who assisted in that persuasion. The nursing supervisor who kept us informed about everything before, during and after it happened. And the receptionist who made sure my wife was comfortable and informed of where I was throughout the process.

The facilities and equipment at the Grande Ronde Hospital are clean, comfortable, private and up to date.

My first experience with Grande Ronde Hospital as a patient in a potentially life-threatening crisis was one of nothing but exceptional care. We are indeed fortunate to have such a state-of-the-art health care facility with such caring and competent employees in our community.

Lowell Knopp

La Grande