In defense of Freitas'
votes against autism bills
Having known Del. Nick Freitas, R-Culpeper, for five years, I — like recent correspondent Amy Huml — was surprised and troubled by the delegate's "no" votes on two bills to provide "expanded health insurance coverage" for youngsters with autism. It seemed entirely out of character for this knowledgeable, compassionate legislator. Recently, I heard Freitas directly being questioned about the autism legislation and his votes. He answered equally directly, saying that the pieces of legislation were "unfunded mandates," meaning they sounded really good on the record, but offered no substantive financial help to the children who needed it, or to their caretakers. He stood alone in his vote because it was the right thing to do. That's the Freitas I know. Additionally, he shared that his cousin has autism and he knows firsthand that his aunt and uncle had to pursue promised financial aid all the way to the high court in Virginia.
It is easy to take campaign ads at face value when they disparage an opponent; knowing the rest of the story might reveal the reviled opponent to be the true champion.
Louisa W. Rucker.