I have a confession to make: Like millions of Americans, I enjoy playing video games. I also like to knit.

But during the last year, I’ve spent little time doing either. These are my hobbies and they have absolutely nothing to do with where I stand on the issues or why I’m running for office.

As a social worker for more than a decade, I’ve dedicated my life to giving young children, teenagers and families who have had the deck stacked against them an opportunity for success. I’ve seen first-hand how the recession has made it even harder for many of these children.

More and more middle-class families are working harder for less and less. Maine’s economy is one of only a handful of states where the economy slid backwards.

While every other New England state saw their economies emerge from the recession, Maine lost 1,300 jobs in 2011 alone.

Republicans promised to create jobs, yet they haven’t delivered. Instead, they’ve passed policies that hurt middle-class families and small businesses. This is the wrong direction for Maine. There is a lot at stake for the future of Maine families.

That’s why it’s surprising to see the Maine GOP launch a childish attack against me for playing online video games. They cherry-picked comments I made as a private citizen in an online game — some of which are seven years old. And, they took them out of context in order to paint me in an unfair light. They are desperate to distract us from the issues that really matter — and their failed record. Instead, they want to mock me. I won’t stand for that kind of bullying.

Voters deserve to hear about the issues. My score on Angry Birds, Words with Friends, or how often I play World of Warcraft has nothing to do with getting Mainers back to work, lowering health care costs or improving Maine schools.

Colleen Lachowicz of Waterville is a Democratic candidate for the District 25 seat in the Maine Senate.


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