Paul Siker, a leader for making Virginia greater than ever

Dear Editor: One of your recent letters aimed to point out the “distinct differences” between Paul Siker and Dave LaRock in the race for 33rd District’s Delegate vote.  It did contrast the two candidates, but it misled the big picture. 

Incumbent LaRock is a reactionary, reflecting his major supporters: the Family Federation of Virginia is a Christian fundamentalist organization which opposed the Equal Rights Amendment for women, and advocates gay conversion therapy; the Virginia Citizens Defense League is a gun rights organization described as being to the right of the NRA; the National Federation of Independent Business and some its most outspoken members like Paul Gosar, Kristi Noem and Rand Paul, have resisted policies to end the COVID-19 pandemic; and while the Virginia Farm Bureau advocates many common sense policies, it opposes publicly financed anti-smoking programs and any public option for health insurance. These are far-right positions, which is why they have endorsed the ultra-right politician, LaRock.  

Paul Siker is a moderate Democrat. Having not held elected office before, he has no legislative track record—which is something he has in common with Glenn Youngkin.  Siker’s campaign page lists the initiatives he supports: strengthening and preserving rural life, extending rural broadband, improving rural healthcare, more funding for law enforcement, and more communication between constituents and their representative. 

All these aims have at least two things in common: innovation and information.  

Rural prosperity depends on a dynamic agriculture—not the traditional kind where Virginia producers often fact competitive disadvantages, but on the novel technologies of the farmer’s next golden age. For example, Virginia Tech scientists have extracted exosomes from cows’ milk that could be engineered to deliver drugs in human bodies; silica nanoparticles can be made to substitute for pesticides, and “pharming” already has proof of principle for growing proteins in plants and animals that are far more valuable than gold. 

Here then are the real differences between LaRock-a MAGA-head, and Siker, a leader for making Virginia greater than ever.  

Terry Sharrer



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