Those members of the Port Orchard City Council who made it a point to chastise Mayor Kim Abel for appearing before the Washington State Legislature to express her unhappiness over the proposed NASCAR track in South Kitsap, were right on the money,
As a private citizen — and an American — Abel certainly owns right to her opinion, and to voice it. But as the mayor — as she well knows — she doesn't have the right to represent herself as speaking for the citizens of South Kitsap on this issue. Had she made the distinction to the legislature between private citizen and public official, it would have been one thing, but she didn't. She made it appear that her position was that of the city — and that is a flat out lie.
In my view, the council should have publicly censured Abel for such a blatantly politically-motivated action, and sent a letter to the legislature stating that the mayor was wrong in appearing and making it exceedingly clear her testimony was her own opinion and in no way represented the position of the city.
Abel isn't the mayor of South Kitsap, and there has been no public opinion poll to learn the feelings of City of Port Orchard residents — Abel's only constituency — on the track. And the Elway poll taken by the county suggests a 50-50 split on the issue when measured countywide, with a majority in South Kitsap in favor of the proposal. Approval numbers also go up countywide when the "public financing" lie is clarified.
In essence, Abel intentionally lied to the legislature about exactly who she represents. She shouldn't be allowed to get away with that.