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Dino Rossi swings through Bellevue

Dino Rossi shakes hands with a supporter during a Rotary Club luncheon in Bellevue. - Chad Coleman / Bellevue Reporter
Dino Rossi shakes hands with a supporter during a Rotary Club luncheon in Bellevue.
— image credit: Chad Coleman / Bellevue Reporter

U.S. Senate hopeful Dino Rossi spoke Wednesday at a Bellevue Rotary Club luncheon, delivering his now-standard doomsday America message in hopes of persuading voters to unseat Democrat Patty Murray.

"America is in trouble," he said. "If we don't change things in this election, we're going to wake up 24 months from now in a country you don't even recognize."

Rossi focused on the economy and jobs, blaming Congressional incumbents, particularly Murray, for lingering stagnation on both fronts.

He attacked spending first, criticizing federal stimulus packages, as well as the president's recent proposal for a new round of recovery funding that would go toward infrastructure improvements.

"What did our grandparents do?" Rossi asked."They worked, they produced, they saved.

"What's this generation doing, particularly this crop of politicians? They're borrowing to consume."

Rossi also accused incumbents of creating new "super banks" that don't lend to small businesses.

The Murray campaign says Rossi has it all wrong.

"He's conveniently ignoring the history of how we got into this economic crisis," said Julie Edwards, a Murray spokeswoman. "He supports the policies of the Bush administration that brought the economy to its knees."

Rossi said he would repeal the financial-reform bill and propose new measures to protect consumers.

"Business needs modest taxation and fair and predictable regulation," he said.

Rossi also criticized the Democratic health-care reform bill that passed this year, calling it a "job killer."

"It's actually a tax-and-spend bill with a little health care sprinkled on top," he said.

Rossi offered alternatives to the reform bill, saying his own solutions would reduce costs and provide better access.

Among those solutions: reeling in frivolous lawsuits, letting people purchase insurance across state lines, allowing small groups to band together to buy insurance like larger organizations, and promoting health savings plans.

Edwards said Murray supported the bill because she wanted to enact changes that would put patients ahead of profits.

"She understands that it's not perfect, but it's important to take steps in the right direction and help struggling families get the coverage they need," Edwards said.

Edwards also noted that the Congressional Budget Office has determined that the bill will be revenue-positive within 10 years.

Rossi leads Murray by an average of 2 points in three major polls taken since late July, according to the non-partisan news aggragator Real Clear Politics.

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