When Kathleen Christine “K.C.” Tomlinson was first sworn in as state representative of the 18th Legislative District, it was after winning a special election to fill a vacancy last spring — the height of the COVID-19 pandemic’s early days. Still, she made the best of it. Her father, state Sen. Tommy Tomlinson, R-6, held the Bible while state Superior Court Judge Victor P. Stabile administered the oath.
In November, Tomlinson won her first full term as a Republican representing Bucks County, and Delaware Valley Journal caught up with her to talk about the challenges she sees ahead.
How is the beginning of your new term going so far?
Obviously, it has been difficult this year and last given the pandemic, but I must say even in the worst of times I absolutely love my job and the opportunity to represent the people of my community.
Are there any surprises you weren’t expecting?
I took office during a very difficult time, so each day presented new challenges. But I have learned to adapt and focus on serving the people of Bensalem the best I can.
Now that you have had time to settle in, without another election looming just a few months away, what are your top priorities?
My first priority is working on pandemic-related issues, various pieces of legislation included the Patient Safety Act which I have cosponsored, and hopefully, sometime in the near future, I look forward to being able to spend time with my constituents, in person rather than virtually.
What are your thoughts on Pennsylvania’s response to COVID-19 relief and what do you plan to do to help the people you represent with COVID-19 relief and policies?
We just recently passed bipartisan legislation that will provide rent relief to Pennsylvanians and bring back over $7 million to Bucks County businesses that have suffered due to the Pandemic. We have to continue to work to allow businesses to reopen in a safe manner, we need our businesses and employees back to work. Just last week, I voted to support legislation that will allow the National Guard to help administer the vaccinations, which our most vulnerable population desperately needs.
The nation is seeing a lot of disconnect between parties, especially after the recent election and riot at the U.S. Capitol. However, we also just witnessed the most bipartisan vote ever in our Senate to impeach former President Donald Trump with seven Republicans voting to convict him. What are your thoughts on the state of the Republican Party and the divide we are seeing between parties?
Although I am a proud Republican, I am even more proud to be the state representative of the 18th District. My district is unique. We have over 5,000 more Democrats than Republicans, so I am always focused on my constituents. I spend every day working to represent the people of Bensalem to the best of my ability and to make sure their voices are heard. I believe both sides need to do a better job of toning down the rhetoric and working on legislation that will help citizens get vaccinated, get back to work, and move Pennsylvania forward.