At our annual dinner honoring the memory of President Ronald Reagan, I highlighted that he was a firm believer in all people working together to better our country, especially Republicans and reminded everyone of his 11th Commandment: Thou shalt not speak ill of any fellow Republican. Something we all need to take to heart in our current environment and as President Trump has recently accomplished, probably should go beyond the norm and work harder in our talks the with the other side (the Dems that is).

The following excerpt from an article by State Sen. Toni Boucher presents the same message:

“For me, being a Republican means having a vision of a better Connecticut. It means being self-reliant, industrious, fiscally responsible and compassionate to those that need our help. It means being forward-thinking, not just to the next year or next election cycle. It means thinking about the impact that decisions we make today could have on future generations. Are we leaving them a legacy, or a burden?

Part of the legacy is the unanimous passage of the nation’s toughest hate crimes law and legislation that protected our environment and open space, women’s rights, marriage equality, civil rights, as well our children. A party’s budget reveals its priorities. What services do you prioritize when spending taxpayers’ money?

I can tell you that as a Republican, I support a budget that creates a new Education Cost Sharing (ECS) formula that provides state funding for all of Connecticut’s students, urban and suburban. I support providing the necessary funding to care for our elderly, our intellectually and developmentally disabled residents, and those most in need that are doing their best to make a living and support their families.

I support a state budget that provides funding for our municipalities without asking them to pay for bad financial decisions made by the state. I support a transportation plan that contains bonding for crucial infrastructure needs and mass transit: one that does not include tolls, more taxes, or fees.

Which brings me to taxes. The budget proposal my Republican colleagues and I put forth — correction: the six budget proposals we presented this year — included no new taxes or tolls on our overtaxed residents and businesses. Instead, we relied on changes to reduce the high cost of running government by making it more efficient. We consolidated functions like human resources, communications, and information technology. We reduced the number of deputy commissioners and executive secretaries to one per agency. We also reduced legislative franking privileges, the number of legislative committees, and the number of staff hired for each legislative session.

Democrat leaders in the legislature did not allow our budget to be put to a vote.

However, we remain undeterred. As Republicans, my colleagues and I are determined to have our constituents’ voices heard. We continue to present ideas to save our state from financial ruin. We continue to advocate for reduced regulations and a more business-friendly climate that will create and grow jobs.

No matter the setbacks, we will press forward with a vision of what our state can be: a Connecticut with an expanding middle class, where all children receive a good education, where everyone has the opportunity to find a good job or to create and grow their own business.

That’s what being a Connecticut Republican means to me.”