Dear East and South County Neighbors,

Across every generation, parents worry about their kids. We hope for them, and want them able to meet life’s challenges.

I waited until my sons were out of high school before I ever considered running for public office. Raising them well, saving my time away from work for them, that was my priority.

Following each of their high school graduations (in 1998 and 2000), I took each one away for a day into California’s mountains just east of here. For each, our destination was a wagon road used by pioneers to climb the great rock wall of the eastern Sierra Nevada.

My message? The wagon road is the road of life. Away in these great mountains, among the rutted boulders and rust-flecked granite sheets of Carson Pass, or on the steeply forested talus slope west of Donner Lake, my sons could see what commitment and determination looks like. The message of the wagon roads is vivid. Pioneers made California the home of their families and the founding place for their dreams by hard work, unwavering determination — and teamwork when facing adversity.

California must reclaim this heritage. In the State Capitol, solving California’s problems has taken a back seat to partisan bickering. Effort applied is ineffective. The new and accustomed routine is failure after failure. In the face of skyrocketing deficits, underfunded schools and out-of-whack budgets, gridlock is accepted as a norm.

Nothing is solved, while the most precious resource of every person or institution, time itself, is wasted. It’s killing our future. The Wall Street Journal recently blasted California citing the stark fact our government no longer works.

That’s why I am running for State Assembly - I am convinced California’s best days lay in front of us – not behind us.

My priorities in the State Assembly will be clear: ~ Target job creation by cracking the nut the Wall Street Journal identified – making government work.

~ Accept the charge our Constitution vests in every lawmaker’s office to pursue oversight and accountability of state agencies. Under our Constitution, California’s future is entrusted not to a “Big 5″, but to ALL 120 state lawmakers.

~ Protecting our investment in education. Without a growing, educated work force, we’ll lose the jobs competition to other, better educated places.

We Must Grow Our Future from Today’s Difficulties

Carved in the granite above the main entry to California’s 1st office building is a message to succeeding generations, “Bring Me Men to Match My Mountains”.

Early Californians understood that the character and determination of our pioneer forbears represented the type of man or woman California would need if successive generations were to meet the mountain-like challenges of their time. I’ll bring a belief in the preciousness of this heritage to the State Assembly.

You can read more about my vision, values and plans for California here on my website. Feel free to contact me with any questions.

I would appreciate your support and your vote.

Onward and Upward,

Ken Cooley