Dodge County Campaign Update
Last week I stopped in Dodge County as part of my campaign to be a real voice for Georgia in Congress and bring new leadership to Georgia’s 8th Congressional District. I started my morning with a great interview on Wolf Country 97.5 in Eastman where I was able to share my plans for making infrastructure investments in Georgia’s 8th district that will help our business community, the quality of life in rural Georgia, and our schools. It’s simply unacceptable that in the 21st century many parts of our district lack access to affordable high-speed internet service, and that we’ve failed to update large portions of our infrastructure since the Great Depression.
I also highlighted the fact that the partisan bickering in Washington is leaving our district out in the cold. While I was at the station I met a woman who was frustrated with my opponent, Austin Scott. Congressman Scott let herself and her husband down by failing to properly assist them with her husband’s social security claim, this isn’t the first time I’ve heard from residents in the 8th district about Congressman Scott’s poor constituent service, and his actions in Washington suggest he’s more interested in being a D.C. socialite, than a public servant for those who put him in office. Hearing her story further motivated me in my efforts to hold Congressman Scott accountable and take his place, as a real voice for Middle and South Georgia in Congress.
After my interview I made stops at the Dodge County Hospital, and to meet with the Dodge County Sheriff to discuss issues facing the law enforcement community and public safety challenges in Dodge county. Dodge County hospital is yet another rural hospital in Georgia that suffering under the weight of rising healthcare costs, challenges getting payments in a timely manner, and a a large number of uninsured and underinsured patients, not to mention the continued uncertainty about the future of the healthcare system in America, I’m a proponent of Medicare for All and I’m running to address the rural healthcare crisis in our district, you can read more of my thoughts on healthcare on my website and my post about my visit to Monroe County hospital.
The leadership of Dodge County hospital and the local sheriff both shared with me that the opioid crisis was a serious problem in Dodge county and the surrounding area. Many of the crime and healthcare problems in the area can be attributed to the abuse of opioid drugs and opioid drug addiction, a scourge that is destroying families, lives, and hope in our state, and our nation. Local law enforcement, care providers, and most of all our families need urgent action from Congress to reduce the use and abuse of opioid drugs, and address the havoc that these dangerous drugs have created. We recently learned that Big pharma pressured Congress and the DEA to reduce enforcement around opioid drug regulations, and this kind of special interest influence isn’t just wrong, it’s deadly. We must hold big pharma accountable and have federal action to address this emergency while also reducing the influence of special interests in Washington with campaign finance and lobbying reform.
I toured Aremac Heat Treating, an industry leading metal treating company in Eastman that is a major employer in Dodge county and for the region as a whole. Aremac and other local employer have built a partnership with Middle Georgia State University, and are part of efforts to turn this region into a center for plane and jet manufacturing. It was great to learn about their business, and to discuss the need for corporate tax reform to help support our business community in the 8th district. Aremac and other manufacturers are setting the example when it comes to job creation for our district, and with more investment infrastructure, skills training, and supporting an education system that promotes trade and manufacturing, we can attract more job creating businesses to the 8th district.
Lastly I connected with Dodge County Commission Chair Dan McCraine who highlighted that many residents of the 8th district feel disconnected from Washington, and that infrastructure investment is a key priority for his county. I’m learning a lot on these listening tours throughout the 8th district, and it’s becoming more clear to me by the day that my opponent has failed to lead on the key issues facing Georgians, and lacks the vision to help create a better quality of life in the 8th district. It’s time we had a real voice in Congress.