We are facing many different crises right now: a global pandemic, the worst economy since the Great Depression, endless gridlock in Washington, and wildfires sweeping across parts of Colorado.

We need steady leaders who will meet the multiple crises with solutions and integrity. Diane Mitsch Bush is that leader. That’s why I am supporting her in the race for Colorado’s Third Congressional District where I live as a fourth generation native.

Diane has a proven bipartisan record, which I regard as integral to good government. In Colorado’s legislature she went out of her way to get to know her Republican colleagues and work with them on issues that mattered to their districts. She built relationships with them and treated them with respect and not as enemies. That is why more than 70% of her bills were co-prime sponsored by Republicans.

I am particularly impressed by her knowledge and courage on rural and Western water issues. Diane earned a reputation as a tough and independent leader, especially when she found herself in conflict with her party leadership on a Republican water bill, which clarified the priority of Colorado water law over federal water law. Diane forged ahead with her Republican colleagues to cosponsor and support this bill, which would help farmers, ranchers, ski areas and other important water rights holders. Diane persisted until her leadership eventually understood the value of this bill. She has never been afraid of big fights or doing what is right for her constituents. She will work with Republicans to get things done for western and southern Colorado as well as for all of Colorado’s citizens when needed.

During my 30 years in elective and appointed positions in Colorado government, I have had several opportunities to work alongside Diane on tough issues of critical importance to rural and western Colorado, especially on hard choices on water and transportation. Diane always looks for the balance between legitimate competing interests and demands as she searches for the way to foster efficient government to do the most good for the greatest number of citizens.

Diane intends to go to Washington to work for lower health-care costs, create good-paying jobs for the Third Congressional District, and nurture our public lands. These are the issues that matter to people right here. These difficult times demand a representative who will listen to all sides and come up with solutions to our greatest challenges.

Diane has the integrity of a member of Congress and is committed to doing what is right. I know firsthand that she knows what it means to put people above their party because she has done it before. She is no politician — she is a public servant. This is why Diane has my full endorsement and my vote. I hope you will join me in voting for Diane Mitsch Bush for Congress.

Russell George is a former Republican Speaker of the House in the Colorado General Assembly. He lives in Rifle.