The free-for-all of Washington’s top-two primary creates a place holder for would-be politicians, including Tim Sutinen who says he is aligned with the “Lower Taxes Party.” A Longview businessman, Sutinen said he’s running for office as an independent conservative against state Rep. Brian Blake, an Aberdeen Democrat whose district includes Longview, Kelso, Cowlitz County and Wahkiakum and Pacific counties. “I’m running for office because I’m tired of the out of control spending which leads to never-ending tax increases and job losses,” said Sutinen. Sutinen said that because state spending is out of control Washington could face fiscal ruin in the near future. He said the state must change direction or it will end up in a debt trap like California, “or worse yet, Greece."
Sutinen favors limited government. “The purpose of government is to protect our freedoms and guarantee property rights,” said Sutinen. He also thinks its government’s responsibility to provide the necessary infrastructure and education as required by the State Constitution. “Article 9, Section 1 of the Constitution says it is the paramount duty of the state to make ample provision for the education of all children residing within its borders,” said Sutinen. Additionally, he feels that police, fire protection and other public services fall into similar categories of state responsibility. “The government is not supposed to be the solution for all of our problems,” said Sutinen, “but its intervention usually ends up creating more problems than what it solves.”
Sutinen said there are dozens of examples of unintended consequences of governmental meddling, creating new laws and administrative ordinances. “I advocate a government that doesn’t try to play favorites but provides a level playing field for everyone,” he said. Sutinen also said the state needs to repeal many of the laws that make it difficult for business to grow and develop into companies that can support family wage jobs. He said if elected, one of the first issues he plans to tackle is to try and re-institute a two-thirds majority vote in the legislature for any proposed tax increase. “Voters in the 19th District voted overwhelmingly for it and our legislators must respect that,” said Sutinen. He said he’d also like to repeal the $800 million tax hike legislators passed during the 2010 legislative session. And he is irritated by the fact that voters have voted twice for $30 vehicle tabs. “Twice voters have passed a bill for $30 tabs and twice politicians have jacked them back up,” said Sutinen. He also said he will look to balance the state budget without raising taxes. He said as an independent legislator, “I plan on accomplishing the goals I’ve laid out the same way any other legislator would - by building coalitions and working with other legislators from all parties,” he said.
Sutinen graduated from high school in Lohja, Finland, in 1991 and moved to America over 17 years ago. He has been married to wife Darlene for 17 years. They have 10 children. Sutinen said he currently owns a computer networking and consulting business in Longview and employs 10 people. He is also a life-time member of the National Rifle Association and a bible study leader in a Lutheran church.