Cincinnati Enquirer endorses: Thomas Massie’s ideas surpass tea party roots

See below yesterday’s article endorsing Thomas Massie from the Cincinnati Enquirer.

“We think Washington could use his business smarts, his tendency to innovate, his drive to uncover waste and his leadership. We recommend Massie for Congress in Kentucky’s 4th District.”

Thomas Massie’s ideas surpass tea party roots

October 23, 2012

It’s tempting to view Thomas Massie through the focus of a single lens – that of the tea party. Massie, the Republican candidate for Congress in Northern Kentucky, does indeed claim tea party heritage and espouses its stop-spending, cut-the-deficit mantra.

But to view him only from that perspective sells him short. Massie has an interesting story and background that will position him well if he gets to Washington, which we hope he does.

Massie’s from Vanceburg in Lewis County, in the eastern portion of the far-flung 4th Congressional District. At a young age, he showed an aptitude for taking things apart and using the pieces to invent something new, a trait that also might serve him well in D.C. He tried to build a robot to clean his room. He bought the entire stock of potassium nitrate from the local pharmacy to make gunpowder, a purchase the pharmacist was compelled to inform his mother about. A science fair win in the ninth grade won him a trip to California and opened his eyes to the world beyond Lewis County.

He was accepted to the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology to study engineering. While there, he invented a high-tech computer modeling and design software and went into business with his wife, Rhonda. She went to the same Lewis County high school, two years behind Massie, and followed him to MIT, where she was also schooled in engineering. They began selling their software product while still in college and eventually raised tens of millions in venture capital financing to expand.

Ten years later, they sold their shares of the firm and they moved back to Lewis County, to a thousand-acre farm bought from his wife’s family. They built a house that runs on solar power and is off the electrical grid.

As a big Lewis County landowner, Massie found himself getting involved in local issues, usually taxation. When he spoke up, he found like-minded people willing to follow him. One local official dubbed them “Thomas’ Angry Mob.” In 2010, he ran for judge-executive in Lewis County and won.

When he took office, he says he pored over county bills with a goal of saving his annual salary by cutting waste. In two years, he says, he saved three years of his salary.

Inspired by Rand Paul, the Bowling Green, Ky., doctor who won a seat in the U.S. Senate in 2010, Massie ran for Congress and beat the establishment-favored Alicia Webb-Edgington and Boone County Judge-executive Gary Moore in a crowded primary.

Massie is a fiscal conservative who believes “If you’re not finding waste in government, you’re not looking for it.”

He correctly sees the safety of the Republican-friendly 4th District as allowing him the freedom to take risks. “I’m ready to be unpopular,” he told The Enquirer.

But he says he would support a new Brent Spence Bridge, despite its multibillion-dollar price tag. “We can make the argument that this bridge needs to happen now,” he says.

He’s already given thought to what kind of “model” he would follow as a congressman. He’s leaning toward finding 40 or 50 like-minded representatives who share common goals and who can be influential in shaping legislation.

Massie is running against Bill Adkins, a 56-year-old lawyer from Williamstown who has sought, but never won, elected office before.

Massie is a thoughtful 41-year-old who already has a great deal of experience in business, having started and sold a very successful one. After making his fortune on the East Coast, he returned home and served his county. Although linked to the tea party, Massie is likely to be an independent thinker in Washington.

We think Washington could use his business smarts, his tendency to innovate, his drive to uncover waste and his leadership. We recommend Massie for Congress in Kentucky’s 4th District.

Read original article here…


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