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False assertions impugn RTB’s nonpartisan mission

Updated: Jun 20

Letter to the Editor by Kirk Rider

Daily Sentinel March 13, 2024 edition


We read in your pages repeated assertions that Restore the Balance is a Democratic Party organization. It’s discouraging and, frankly, annoying. They are false, and impede RTB’s efforts to drive political debate to the truly important issues that face us all.

I have served on the RTB Board of Directors since it was formed. During all that time, and for almost all of my life, I’ve been a registered Republican. Representatives of RTB have met once with the Mesa County Democratic organization during its existence, at the invitation of the party, who wondered what we were up to. RTB representatives (including me) have met twice — once formally, once informally — with county GOP officials, just reaching out or seeking a chance to present at an assembly. We were treated courteously by them, and none of them called us a “false flag Democratic front.”

Among RTB’s activities has been issuing and scoring questionnaires to candidates for office. These efforts, which readers have probably reviewed in the Sentinel, have been among RTB’s most valuable activities, according to feedback from our members and the public. Now, we see that some Republican candidates are partially or entirely refusing to respond to these questionnaires. Either they think that they will not get a fair shake, or they don’t want to answer questions about serious issues.

Sentinel readers should visit the RTB website. It includes the full text of the last three RTB questionnaires and of the candidates’ full responses, plus RTB’s scoring of those responses. The questionnaires and scoring for the 2023 Grand Junction City Council provide a good example. Four of those candidates were endorsed by the Republican Party. Two of them got lower scores because of their objections to RTB’s seven principles that should guide political conduct for candidates and voters alike. One of the others, Cody Kennedy, earned the highest score of all the candidates in of all the races. A review of his answers will make it obvious why his score was so high.

RTB is not aligned with any political party, period. We, including the 2,900-plus people that have endorsed the RTB pledge, are just trying to restore factual truth and reasoned discussion, and even some good manners, to their rightful place in political discourse. To all Sentinel readers and voters: DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH into RTB. Some of you may be very surprised. And we will welcome you as members.

KIRK RIDER

Grand Junction

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