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WA House candidate: Inslee’s handling of coronavirus often ‘arbitrary’

Hundreds gathered at a rally to protest Washington state's stay-at-home order at the Capitol building on April 19, 2020, in Olympia, Washington. (Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)

State representative Norma Smith is retiring at the end of her term, and Republican Greg Gilday is looking to keep the seat in the control of the Republican Party. Gilday is a lawyer, a realtor, and a third generation resident of the district he hopes to represent. Washington’s 10th District includes Stanwood to Camino Island to Oak Harbor. Gilday joined the Jason Rantz Show to discuss why he’s running.

There’s questions right now as to whether or not we’re going to be opening our schools in the fall for in-person learning, remote learning, or a hybrid. What does Gilday think is the right move for the 10th District?

“I think it’s imperative that we get kids back to school for in-person education as much as we possibly can, and anything that needs to be done online,” he said. “We need to not allow for the type of distance learning that they finished the last school year with, but really go to an online curriculum where we don’t let kids fall behind.”

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This shines a spotlight on Gov. Inslee and his handling of not just the school situation, but the impact of coronavirus on the economy. What does Gilday think of the governor’s response over the course of the last few months?

“I think when this first started out, I was supportive of him because we didn’t know how much we didn’t know. However, as the time has passed and we’ve learned more about coronavirus, we learned that it’s not going to be bad as they had thought, and that we can address it with certain modifications to how we’re going about living with social distancing, and masks, and all that,” he said.

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“The problem with how Governor Inslee has handled this is that it has been far too arbitrary. I mean, right from the beginning, with government builders being able to build and private builders not being able to go to work,” Gilday added. “I think a lot of people out there see the arbitrariness of it, and they’re really kind of fed up with it.”

Pushing back against the Seattle defund police movement

There’s a movement in Seattle to defund the police, and sometimes ideas emanating from Seattle have a tendency to spread to the rest of the state. How would the House push back against such ideas?

“I am for defending the police. We need the black and blue,” Gilday said. “Is there room for improvement in how we police our communities? Yes, there’s always going to be room for improvement. You don’t achieve that improvement by defunding them. You don’t need to start from scratch. In the end, public trust is earned by fair and impartial policing and transparency and accountability where everyone feels that they have a seat at the table.”

“So what I think we need to do is just open a dialogue between all the stakeholder groups, including elected officials, law enforcement, communities of color,” he added. “Sit down and talk about the problems that are out there and come up with some pragmatic solutions. … We just need to essentially stop grandstanding and just sit down and talk with each other.”

Listen to the Jason Rantz Show weekday afternoons from 3 – 6 p.m. on KTTH 770 AM (or HD Radio 97.3 FM HD-Channel 3). Subscribe to the podcast here.

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