Bentley announces office run

 

February 7, 2018

Max Erikson

RUNNING: Sasha Bentley has declared her candidacy for State representative,running against Rep. Norm Johnson.

Former chair of the Klickitat County Democrats Sasha Bentley last week announced her candidacy, running as a Democrat for District 14, Position 1, challenging Republican incumbent Norm Johnson in the 2018 election.

Bentley filed her papers in January and declared her candidacy on her 30th birthday and says she is excited to get the process going. She has been the head of the Klickitat County Democrats for the past year and she formally announced her resignation from the position on Feb. 5 and is ready to get her campaign going.

“My first step is to start assembling a team of people who want to be involved,” Bentley says. “I plan to really get out into the community and meet people and learn what issues are important to them and learn about the issues.”

Bentley says she is passionate about civic engagement and government accountability. Her goal is to bridge voters together who have different views and find common ground that both democrats and republicans can agree on such as government accountability and transparency.

“I think both parties can agree on some of the things I want to address,” Bentley says. “My focus will be on education, particularly for establishing and funding trade schools and apprenticeships. I want to work towards internet access to rural areas, affordable housing, giving people better coverage to healthcare and mental health services, and focus on cutting regulations for small businesses in the gorge.”

Though her political background is limited Bentley says her high energy, passion for serving people, entrepreneurial background, and proactive attitude are some of the skills she possesses to be a strong representative. Bentley says she has lived in both very conservative and liberal parts of the country, giving her an open perspective on both sides of a political argument. She says having that experience helped develop her diplomacy skills that would be effective as a state representative.

“Though I’m more progressive, I’m also very realistic and respectful of peoples’ opinions,” Bentley says. “Living in Idaho and having family members who are conservative, gives me a good understanding of conservative viewpoints. I want to use those skills to bridge the divide we have in our current political climate and bring people together.”

Originally from northern California, Bentley moved to northern Idaho in high school; there she discovered her interest for politics. That interest led Bentley to the University of Washington, where she earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in political science in 2010. After graduating she worked as a legal assistant in Seattle before moving with her husband to Australia and she also spent time in Southeast Asia. Bentley returned to the northwest and settled in White Salmon in 2015 and after the 2016 elections wanted to take a more active role in politics.

“After the elections in 2016 I realized how important it was to be engaged and involved in local government,” Bently says. “I realized that with my background and education it was something that I really felt I should do.”

Bentley gained confidence about her decision with the encouragement of the Columbia Gorge Women’s Action Network (CGWAN) which she is a member of, and also received training from an organization called “She Should Run” that was founded with the goal of encouraging and supporting more women to run for political office.

Now she has her sights set on a run for state rep. and plans to actively engage voters and encourage everyone to get and out and vote and become involved in the process.

“I would love to see increased voter turnout,” Bentley says. “I’m excited for what I think I can do for our district and voter engagement is part of that.”

To learn more about Bentley and her political platform, how to donate or volunteer, visit her website at sashaforstate.com

 

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