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We Must Stand Up for Alabama at the Ballot Box (Darrio Melton)

  |   By: Darrio Melton     |   Letters to the Editor

Today, the polls are open for Alabama’s primary elections and voters around the state are heading to cast their ballots in the party primary elections.

Despite the millions of dollars that candidates and political organizations have spent trying to persuade you to head to the polls to support a particular candidate, many voters will stay home today.

I’ve heard a range of reasons why voters won’t be voting on Election Day, but I don’t think there’s any excuse not to go cast your ballot.

People say they are tired of the Red versus Blue hyper-partisan nature of politics. They’re ready for compromise and collaboration, not fighting and finger pointing.

Voters don’t think any of the candidates running actually want to help Alabama, just fight President Obama. They’re ready for candidates to stand up and say what they want to do to fix our state.

People are tired of hearing about the corruption in Montgomery and the grand jury investigations. They’re ready to elect good, honest leadership and just don’t feel like anyone will look out for the public’s best interests anymore.

But the truth is, there are good candidates on both ballots who will work together, conduct government with integrity, and fight to make Alabama better for all of us. Those people will not have the opportunity to serve if you don’t go to the polls and exercise your right to vote.

If we sit at home on Election Day, we will continue to elect more of the same. We will continue to elect leadership that dismantles public education in back-room deals in the middle of the night.  They will continue to shut down dissenting voices in the legislature and waste millions of state dollars defending unconstitutional legislation like the Accountability Act.

If we don’t vote, we will have four more years of tax breaks to big business and poverty wages for their employees.  We will continue to live in a state with 600,000 uninsured citizens, half of which could be covered if the state’s leadership would choose to expand Medicaid.  Alabama will continue to be last in everything that is good and first in everything that is bad.

It’s up to you. That’s the beauty of Democracy–we create the government we want on Election Day.  Today, we choose the future of Alabama.

We can go to the polls and choose to stand up against the corrupt, Montgomery elite or we can choose to stay home and let others decide for us.

As for me, I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired. I’m ready for change in Montgomery. And I’m ready for you to stand with me to create it.

Do your research. Go vote. Bring a photo ID. Make your mark on Alabama.

Follow Darrio on Twitter at @DarrioM

Representative Darrio Melton is a Democrat from Selma. He was elected to the Alabama House of Representatives in 2010 to represent district 67.