Here’s the text of the release sent out this morning by House Republicans…..
Today, Rep. Glenn Anderson announced he will not seek re-election for a seventh term as state representative serving the 5th Legislative District. The 5th District includes Issaquah, Sammamish, Snoqualmie Valley, Maple Valley, and parts of Renton and Kent. Anderson was first elected in 2000 and was re-elected every two years.
“It’s been an extraordinary gift and a privilege to be allowed to serve the citizens of our community. I’ve been extremely lucky that so many constituents, regardless of party affiliation, felt as though it was important to be engaged and have helped in many ways with all the issues I’ve been called on to deal with over the years,” said Anderson, R-Fall City. “There is no substitute for participation when it comes to good government. The list of people who have sacrificed to be helpful to me, and their state, is very long.”
Anderson has come to be known as a fiercely independent, creative and fiscally-conservative, problem solver representing his constituents in the Legislature. He is recognized as a statewide leader on K-12 and higher education reform and funding issues. He was a bipartisan leader on a series of critical K-12 education reform measures passed over the last several years. He served as the leading Republican voice on Gov. Christine Gregoire’s Washington Learns 2006 Task Force and his “Fund Education First” budget reform proposal is considered to be an essential initiative to improving K-12 school funding.
“When students have a good basic education, everything in life becomes possible for them. It’s not something we should take for granted,” says Anderson.
Anderson also served on each of the Legislature’s major budget committees and was a key advocate for getting performance audits of state agencies enacted into law. He was also instrumental in creating a constitutional amendment to enact a state budget “rainy day” fund to help stabilize state spending during good and bad economic times.
He has always been a staunch advocate of government living within the taxpayers’ ability to pay, even when sometimes that position has been unpopular.
“No matter how good the cause for government spending, if you don’t have the money, you just can’t spend it and then try to terrorize, mislead or emotionally extort taxpayers to get more money. That’s just plain dishonest,” said Anderson. “There’s always a trade-off between what you want, what you need and what you have the money for, and that means tough choices.”
In 2004, Anderson served as Republican Floor Leader responsible for leading debate and parliamentary procedure during floor action in the House. In 2006, he served as president of the Pacific Northwest Economic Region, which is a U.S.-Canadian commonwealth of the five northwestern states and four western Canadian provinces dedicated to economic growth and quality-of-life issues. In 2007, he was awarded the “Washington General” merit designation for outstanding civil service to the state. His expertise and insight into high-tech and international trade issues have also been significant contributions.
When asked what his most significant contribution has been over his terms of service, Anderson said: “Helping my constituents get the services they deserve out of government. Listening to and assisting constituents has been my top priority. Their lives are busy and helping them sort out some bureaucratic boondoggle so they can move on with what is important to them has always come first. Constituent interaction and input have been invaluable to me.”
When asked what he attributed his success in being consistently re-elected and getting things done in the Legislature, Anderson was characteristically direct, “Be honest with your voters even when it’s not necessarily what they want to hear and, likewise, always remember they are your boss, not the partisan, political leadership or the moneyed special interests seeking to influence you.”
Anderson added, “In the Legislature, moving the ball on any issue is about doing your homework and listening to people who know more than you. Lawmakers should always be respectful of differing points-of-view and personalities, and have a very low tolerance for proverbial ‘political manure.’ Be who you are, be genuine, be helpful and always remember there will be real, lasting consequences on people you will never meet when you make any decision or take any vote.”
As a senior legislator Anderson ranks 13th in seniority out of 98 House members.
When asked what comes next for him, Anderson responded, “While this chapter of public service is closing, the book is still open. I’ve had a lot of encouragement to run for higher office from both Republicans and Democrats and I’m strongly considering that option.”
Anderson will serve out the remainder of his term through the end of 2012.