Vermont Senate Next for Veteran Diplomat
By John Gramlich, Staff Writer
Galbraith, 59, has long been a well-known - and controversial - figure in international diplomatic circles, serving under several presidents and in countries ranging from Croatia to East Timor. The veteran's next public office, however, will be decidedly more provincial: last week, he was elected to Vermont's state Senate.
Instead of trying to find a diplomatic solution to the nearly decade-long war in Afghanistan, the Democrat will be focusing on job creation and budget-balancing, just like the thousands of other state legislators elected nationally last week.
"I'm looking forward to getting down to work toward the goal of providing affordable health care to everyone, trying to improve our economy, including getting full cell phone and broadband coverage, and to addressing, in a responsible way, the fiscal challenges that we face," Galbraith said, according to the Brattleboro Reformer .
In an op-ed he wrote for the Reformer last month , Galbraith - who also has flirted with a gubernatorial run - touched on his unusual background, highlighting his diplomacy in international matters as a way to break partisan stalemates in state-level politics.
"I have learned that even where warring parties have seemingly irreconcilable positions, they have many common interests," Galbraith wrote. "By listening carefully to both sides and focusing on common ground, I was able to negotiate the peace agreement that ended the war in Croatia and to make substantial progress in improving relations between Indonesia and newly independent East Timor. As Vermonters of different political stripes, we nonetheless have much in common."