Re: “Shrink the number of statewide elected offices to increase public accountability” [Aug. 16, Opinion]:

In his Op-Ed, Jason Mercier suggests removing from elected status three important offices in Washington state.

This is a terrible idea. Two of these are in key positions that protect the public or public lands for the benefit of the people of Washington state. The third sets policies for and monitors progress of our challenged education system. So yes, I do know all three names of the people in the offices he would like to remove from public control. So do people who have to deal with powerful insurance companies as patients or providers and/or who care about policies and programs directed at caring for our beleaguered forests and coasts or schools.

I cannot imagine handing over the power to appoint the offices of commissioner of insurance or public lands or control of our education system to some potentially self-aggrandizing party. We’re watching in real time how this is playing out with the U.S. Postal Service and the education system at a national level.

Kim Bennett, Mercer Island