Peruse my thoughts...
I was recently asked what qualifications I had to become a representative. Did I have government experience? Worked on legislation? My answer to these questions is no, I haven't, and that in itself is actually to my benefit! I think we should do away with career politicians! Once they serve a term or a few terms they need to move on and be in what we call the "real world." Too much power only corrupts and we see that all too much with our elected officials.
My qualifications that are the most paramount are my training on how to actively listen to people. To not just sit and nod, but to engage and understand where they are coming from. I have been trained as an advocate which I used in talking that teacher into letting a student have another chance at the speech they were absent for. Persuasion is an important skill when dealing with different attitudes and ideas. I am also trained in conflict mediation. I have sat between two teenaged girls who used to be best friends until a boy ended up dating both at the same time without them knowing it, until later. In this situation I helped the girls come to terms with each other and save their friendship. Getting a group of intelligent Democrats and Republicans to agree on something seems easy compared to that!
I say that I have the exact qualifications needed in Jefferson City at this time in our State's history.
Hi, my name is Connie Simmons and I am running for Missouri House in District 53. I am a retired School Counselor and currently own a gift shop/boutique in downtown Odessa. I am running for office with no hidden agenda and the idea that a representative is to honestly and consistently Represent those in their District. With this in mind I would and do have an open door policy at all times. Have you ever tried to get ahold of our representative to share your thoughts? Did you even get a automated response? No response at all? That needs to change and I want to be part of that change. As a representative I will rely completely on what you, the voters in district 53, tell me to do. I realize everyone has different ideas but I will keep track of what the majority wants and promise to vote accordingly. Yes, even if it is not my first choice. If the majority wants me to vote for or against something, that is what I will do. You choose! I need to have all of you reach out and let me know your e-mail addresses so that we can build a database of District 53 both Democrat and Republican. We are all Missourians and all Americans and need to act as such.
Thank you to all who voted for me in the Primary yesterday. I am humbled by the response and the number who put their faith in me. The war is not won though. It will be an uphill battle from here to win our seat in the House. I say our seat because that is exactly what it is. District 53 has a seat in the Missouri House of Representatives and you and I and everyone else here fills it. I know that in the past the representatives from our district did not find out what I preferred or wanted when they made decisions. Some even just did things to make themselves look good or important. That is not the way our government was set up. The first representatives were a volunteer non paying position. They made decisions based on where they were from and what the people in their area needed or wanted. We need to return government to that idea. Since when is every idea that a Democrat comes up with is wrong? or every idea that a Republican comes up with is wrong? Our elected officials need to be Americans first, Missourians second and way down the line whichever party they belong to. I am probably making some Democrats feel a little uncomfortable saying that, but I am sick of the division in our government. Nothing gets done if we don't discuss and come to mutual agreements. I think of the words of our Lord and Savior found in Matthew, 12:25: “And Jesus knew their thoughts, and said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand.”. It is time for change back to what government was meant to be. Please support my campaign and get our message out.
We are in trying times as I write this. My family has been in social isolation for about a month. I miss seeing my grandchildren and my children so much but it is important to keep everyone safe. Some people are saying this isn't as bad as everyone thought it was going to be. If that is true I am happy to say it so. But I want you all to think on this. Maybe its not as bad as it could be BECAUSE we are social isolating and being careful. I read and see posts and news coming from highly populated areas and pray that we don't see that. From the first I said Missouri is a "fly over" state. How about we have this fly right over us too. Early on though we had confirmed cases in Jackson, Lafayette and Johnson counties. I had just opened a gift shop and boutique in downtown Odessa. As people started staying home and business started to slow down I had a decision to make. Yes, I have rent and utilities to pay. I decided early on to close my shop. I will be fine never knowing how bad it could have been here in our towns if we had not closed down. And people may say it would have never been bad. that we all overreacted. But If I had stayed open and if someone had been exposed to the virus because of my business and someone died, I could never forgive myself. I am OK knowing that I will Never Know if my choice saved a person's life.
Hi Everyone, It's me again. Tomorrow is an important day for me. I will be going to Jefferson City to file to run for Missouri House of Representatives in the 53rd District. We tried this two years ago and did an outstanding job of showing we were contenders. This time I am calling on all of you to help me Win for Us, for You, for District 53. Some important topics for me are Education and TRULY funding the formula for schools (it's not really done correctly now, although Jeff city politicians will tell you it is fully funded) Expanding Medicare/ Medicaid for those families who earn too much to qualify but don't earn enough to be able to afford insurance. These are working Missourians and neighbors who go to work every day but can't afford to take their children to the doctor. Infrastructure, drive through our counties and towns and tell me how many potholes you fall into! How many bridges you hope a really big truck does not go over! Support for our farmers and family farms. We have to find a way to make a living wage for our farmers! Why is it that prices of tractors and combines and the products farmers produce have increased exponentially and yet the cost of the grain and produce have not increased. The farmer isn't making that extra money. Who IS?
I have a question for you also, Why do the people we have representing us in Jefferson City think we were too stupid to understand what the Clean Missouri Bill was for. We wanted an end to huge amounts of money being passed to our representatives from lobbyists and we wanted the gerrymandering that favors one political party over another to stop. They are currently working on a measure that will state that there will not be any lobbyists money changing hands which would be fine, but the other part of that measure will state that only registered voters will be counted when dividing up districts. No unregistered voters and no young people will be counted. Isn't that called stacking the deck? Isn't that wrong and unfair?
I have a real fear of what our state is doing right now. I know that life is precious. I know that a lot of people think that abortion is killing a human being. This is a topic that is not easily discussed or decided on by anyone. Having been a school counselor and working with young people through lots of traumatic events has maybe given me another view but maybe not. Is abortion right? no. Is abortion wrong? no.
I have a couple of observations about the events that took place in Jefferson City as our representatives voted and passed the abortion ban. The main one is that I question whether they were voting for what the majority of their districts wanted? There were hundreds of women at the House in the Gallery trying to tell their representatives to listen to them and respect their individual rights. That didn't happen.
I know this argument cannot be won by either side. But I question, is the idea of abortion being wrong a religions idea or a constitutional idea? If your argument is based on your biblical beliefs then you forget that not everyone shares your beliefs or even your religion. The United States was formed on the principle of Freedom of Religion. If you believe abortion is wrong, don't have one. You should also know that full term abortions have been illegal since Roe v Wade. The pictures of baby bodies piled up in the trash behind the clinic are NOT REAL, at least not here in the US.
Years ago this topic became real in our family. A friend found out her very young daughter was pregnant and simply was too young to safely carry a child 9 months and was a child herself. The family decided to abort the baby. I know it was a difficult decision for them and they were in anguish over it. That young girl grew up to become a wonderful loving mother. Does she think about it? regret it? guess what- I honestly don't know because that was a very personal and private thing for her and I would not dream of asking!
As a Born Again Christian and member of a Southern Baptist Church, with my husband being a licensed Minister and Deacon I have kept quiet on the subject simply because I did not want to cause discord. When the topic was brought up in Sunday School, my husband always told me to speak my mind but I didn't share my opinions because they were just that, My Opinions. Personal and private opinions. I would never choose to have an abortion and never have had one. BUT, I do not know what my decision would be in some of the situations that arise. I did always say that if my daughter had been raped and ended up pregnant back when she was a teen that I would get her an abortion. Without an qualms if she were under 16, with her consent if she were over 16. Yep, I'm the Deacon's wife you sit next to on Sunday morning. For those of you who say God knew us when we were yet in the womb, to be honest he knew you when you were just a twinkle in your daddy's eye. And why does no one ever quote the verse about God breathing the Breath of Life into Adam and Eve upon the completion of creating them?
My fear of the ban goes beyond the religious realm. After all we are a country that has Religious Freedom to believe what you want and to have no fear of being persecuted for those beliefs. Am I right? But have any of you seen Dirty Dancing? Are any of you old enough to have talked to anyone who was an adult in 40's 50's 60's? I remember my mom telling me about an aunt that couldn't have children because of a motel room abortion when she was a teenager. She almost died and was not able to have children after because of the damage caused.
But doctors and nurses are going to be fined who perform these procedures you might say. But what about the people who youtube how to perform an abortion and set up at the local Motel 6 and perform $100 abortions? You say that would not happen. You are wrong. Women are going to die needlessly.
Do I think there should be restrictions on abortion and when it can be performed. Of course I do. In fact I am probably much stricter in my estimation of when is too late than most. I was also a child development teacher and know a lot about the development of the fetus. The bottom line is this: A woman's health decisions belong to her.
So much has happened since the election in November. Some good, some not so good. While we were able to pass some awesome ideas for out state, we elected representatives who were against the ideas we passed. I don't understand how we could have voted back in the same people who put Right to Work through and forced us to vote it out. Now some of those re-elected legislators have already pre-filed a bill to put it back in place. It has to make all of us wonder "what part of no don't they understand?" The honest truth is that they don't understand and the reason is that the Voters said no to Right to Work but put back in those same people, essentially telling them they support their ideas. Confused? So am I.
It seems the legislature is NOT listening to the people who elect them. They seem to be doing whatever big business is telling and paying them to do. So I challenge each of you to also watch the Clean Missouri Act. I wonder how many of our legislators will try to wipe it out so that they can still collect all of the money they can from supporters and lobbyists? Sound cynical, don't I? But, I have to admit, as I watch the news each night and read news reports from reliable sources I am amazed at what some of our politicians get away with.
The real question is HOW to we inform the public and average person and get them to see past the Democrat or Republican label to the everyday decisions and choices our elected officials are making? We need to help people have 20/20 Vision to see what is happening right in front of them. How do we make them open their eyes, look and truly see? Honest question.
The votes were counted and Mr Kolkmeyer had over 9000 votes and I had around 4000. So although we lost the race, District 53 won because we had so many people turn out to vote in a non presidential election year! I was very happy to see the numbers. It means that we have a group that care greatly about what is going on.
The question I have looking at the numbers is this: Why did the exact same people who voted against Right to Work, for Clean Missouri, for Medical Marijuana, for a higher Minimum Wage and against a Gas Tax vote back in the man who was FOR Right to Work, Against Clean Missouri, Against Medical Marijuana, Against a higher minimum wage, and For a higher Gas Tax? I don't mean to be or seem stupid or snide. I truly want to know what everyone who voted for him was thinking. Honestly! If any of you have any insights I would truly like to hear the reasons. Because I just don't get it...
So, what is next for Connie Simmons? My husband and I are thinking of buying an older house to restore and sell. I plan on continuing to attend Lafayette County Democrats meetings, Johnson County Democrats meetings, and get more involved in our communities. If you know of any groups that would like a guest speaker, give me a call. 816-456-8791.
Politically? I knew that a shy girl, new to politics was a long shot to be elected on her first try. Am I disappointed? Maybe a little, but not really surprised. I am so overwhelmed by the support that I received from each of you and am still receiving that I am proud to announce my candidacy for Missouri House of Representatives District 53 in 2020! We have two years to spread the word. My message for this campaign is that we need to educate District 53 that the issues they voted for and thought were important in 2018 were not the issues that their elected candidate thought were important. We need to help people see past the Republican or Democrat beside the name and vote for the Person who best matches their beliefs. We need to gain 20/20 vision by 2020!
So, keep those signs and keep following my webpage and facebook account. It ain't over til the fat lady sings, and I ain't singin' yet!
If you see any signs up after this weekend please let me know locations so that I can go get them. Those things are expensive and I plan on saving them for 2020!
I had a great night with new friends in Higginsville tonight. We met to talk about Tuesday's election and what each of the Amendments and Propositions meant and if we thought they were good or bad ideas. We discussed people running for office and who would be a good choice. Of course we thought Connie Simmons would be a good person for Mo House of Representatives District 53.
It has been a crazy last couple of months. I have discovered a new me inside the quiet, shy, non public Connie. I have gotten up in front of people of all ages and backgrounds and spoken about what my idea of a representative is. I believe that a representative's job is to find out what their district wants them to vote for and against and do what the majority wants, Not just what you want.
I believe that our future depends on our Children and their education and it is our duty to make sure that is a priority NOW. School funding has been cut over the last several years and we cannot afford for that to continue.
I believe that our elder community need our support and that health care and medicines should be available to everyone, equally.
I believe that our roads and infrastructure are in terrible shape and that we need a proposition that puts all of the proceeds directly into roads, immediately.
I believe that we need to help our veterans. If not for them we would not be voting. Thank you for your service and your sacrifice.
I believe that we need to support veteran's homes and rural hospitals that are closing at alarming rates.
I believe that Right to Work was Wrong and we need to insure that it does not try and come back to Missouri.
I believe that it it way past time Missouri passed the Equal Rights Amendment brought up in the 70's. Women who do the exact same job as men deserve the exact same wages, not 20% less.
I believe that the second amendment is an important part of American History and should never be taken from us. I am a gun owner and a pretty good shot.
I believe that America is Great. Always has been and always will be.
I believe that Missouri is the greatest state to live in.
I believe that it is our DUTY to vote on Tuesday. Not just a right that our ancestors fought and gave their lives for. We owe them. We all need to read about each candidate and make informed decisions on each issue. Do not trust any media sources no matter where it comes from to make the decisions for you. Do not allow any political party to make the decisions for you. Read, ask questions, find the answers and Vote.
If you have any questions for me and want to know what I think about any issue, call or text me 816-456-8791. Email me at email@example.com I will always answer your questions honestly and if I don't know an answer, I will tell you I don't and try and find an answer for you.
I have been telling people that a Vote for Connie is a Vote for True Representation. What do I mean by that? Simple. I have always been that straight A student who believed in the American dream and what our forefathers thought of as Democracy and the representatives were people who volunteered to represent those in their area. No pay, just a love of their Country. If you can make a career choice out of being a politician, you are not doing it for Country, you are doing it for money.
I have already had my career and made money and am now receiving a pension that I paid into. Does that mean I would not take the pay if elected. Be serious, I'm not rich like some. But to be honest I think our state legislators get paid too much. Around $37,000 a year but they really don't work all year. They get more months off than a teacher who gets paid far less. What I think is really criminal is that they get a daily stipend on top of their pay IF they show up to work on time! Like it's a choice to be on time? You can't make this stuff up!
But that's getting off on another topic. True Representation is the idea that our representatives listen to our ideas and take our thoughts and wants into consideration BEFORE making any decisions. Have you ever contacted your representative to let them know your thoughts on what was important and what you wanted? If so, did they listen, acknowledge what you had to say, seek any further advice from you? My plan is to do that and more as Your Representative. There are a lot of programs online where I can ask for your input and opinion and even yes or no votes on bills or amendments that come up in our State House. (and I can verify the person voting is in our district) These things are read several times and discussed in detail before a vote comes up. Plenty of time for me to ask YOU what you want. I will then place the vote the way the majority of our district wants. All you have to do it let me know. Keep an open communication with me. We just need to talk about it and share our thoughts and feelings with each other. If there are people who are not online, I will contact them through local newspapers and have them sign up for phone messages from me. The ONLY way for me to represent you is for YOU to tell me what to do.
What a concept! A representative who Actually Represents the People in their District! Um, I thought that was what it was supposed to be... (Maybe it takes a retired teacher, not a politician, to see that fact)