Herrera Beutler scolded by her high school principal

U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, had her town hall meeting this week at Skyview High School, as The Columbian’s Kathie Durbin reported.

The meeting was also written up by Tom Curry, national affairs writer for msnbc.com. In his article, Curry writes, “Her former high school principal also showed up, telling Herrera Beutler, ‘I think you’re drinking that Republican Kool Aid,’ and scolding her for referring to last year’s health care law as ‘Obamacare,’ which he felt was a pejorative term.”

The principal wasn’t named in Curry’s article. Kathie didn’t catch his name when he stepped up to the mic and couldn’t catch up with him afterward, so she didn’t include him in her article.

Let’s open the yearbook and find out who the principal was at Prairie High School when Herrera Beutler, 32, was a Falcon. (Actually, we just emailed Gregg Herrington, spokesman for Battle Ground Public Schools and former longtime Columbian staffer. Although it is always fun to flip through yearbooks.)

Turns out it was Bruce Matheny, who was principal at Prairie High School from 1995 to ’99.

Matheny returned a phone call confirming yes, it was him who spoke at the town hall meeting.

Matheny told Herrera Beutler, “I’m proud of what you’ve done with your career, but I’m really disappointed with your politics. I think you mean well, but you’re drinking that Republican Kool-Aid.”

He challenged her for referring to the federal health reform bill as “Obamacare” and said she should call it what it is: “Affordable health care for more people.” He said those who criticize it don’t offer solutions.

Herrera Beutler agreed in part.

“We have to have an honest replace bill,” she said.

That should include allowing workers to have medical savings, permitting association health plans, and allowing people to buy health insurance across state lines.

She’s advocated those programs for years, she said, “but the major media won’t pick this up.”

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