I want to applaud Mike Lawrence's recent letter supporting a full pension for Congressman Norm Dicks. I grew up in Tacoma and started working with Norm when I was regional director of the federal Economic Development Administration in the mid-1970s.
I am currently writing a biography of Sam Volpentest, and in doing my research I am learning how important Norm was to the Tri-Cities during his 18 terms in Congress -- something we rarely heard about in Tacoma.
Over the years, even though they sometimes disagreed politically, Norm has supplemented the efforts of a succession of 4th District congressmen to attract and keep jobs in the Tri-Cities.
Norm has always been a workhorse, not a show horse, but is nothing less than the most effective Member of Congress to be elected from Washington in the 20th century. He deserves his full pension.
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C. MARK SMITH, Richland