As a former state House of Representatives Democratic Caucus employee, I worked with Rep. Harry Readshaw for nearly 18 years. I haven’t spoken with the representative since I left House employment two years ago and have no stake in his political future.
However, the truth compels me to respond to the vicious maligning of Mr. Readshaw’s record by his opponent in the 36th House District primary race.
Rep. Readshaw was the most honorable representative out of the many I dealt with over 22 years. His first concern always was how proposed legislation could benefit the people of the 36th District.
Particularly ludicrous is the charge he did nothing to attract jobs to his district. The Rep. Readshaw I worked with encouraged new uses for buildings vacated by steel companies and was instrumental behind the scenes promoting redevelopment of the former mill property that became SouthSide Works.
A legislator can’t create jobs out of thin air. Local municipal officials and developers initiate projects for specific sites and job creation. The legislator can champion funding for infrastructure improvements and other incentives that will bring the job-creating projects to reality.
I’d like to remind 36th District voters of the infamous 2005 dark-of-night approval by the Legislature to grant themselves automatic annual pay raises. Rep. Readshaw voted “No” and took tremendous heat from legislators who wanted him to fall into line and support the pay grab.
Being a good legislator is more than marching in lock step with powerbrokers of a political party — it’s putting constituents first. That’s what the people of the 36th District have in the Harry Readshaw I know.
Lower Paxton, Pa.