Last July I walked into a CWA hall in Maryland Heights and sat down with about 400 other people to watch someone speak to us from a large screen at the front of the room. That same evening over 100,000 people in over 3,000 different locations across America were doing the same thing. We all sat patiently and waited for this person to speak and, ultimately, give us some instructions. That person was Sen. Bernie Sanders. His instructions were simple – if we ever want to see real change in this country we need to be more involved in our Democracy. He said we need a political revolution in this country. He said the political revolution starts with us, and it starts from the bottom up, not from the top.
Over the next months, I had the incredible pleasure of meeting hundreds of new faces from all different backgrounds. We drove to Iowa together to knock on the doors of strangers; we sat around tables in local pubs to discuss the issues facing Americans and Missourians; we planned BBQs, concerts and meetings; and we shared our personal stories as to why we were all there and why this was important to us. Every day someone would challenge how I think and inspire me to do better. The people I have met have been some of the most intelligent and passionate individuals I’ve ever come across. Some care deeply about reforming and expanding healthcare, others about education and the environment. Some have been fighting racial and civil injustices; some have been fighting for the poor and disenfranchised. Some marched in the streets of Ferguson; some protested the proposed riverfront Stadium; some protested against the developments in North St. Louis and the advantages the wealthy and well-connected have over lifelong residents of a community. Some were getting involved in politics and activism for the first time. All of us seemed to share one common goal – to make sure our government works for us, not just for a handful at the top.
These last months have opened my eyes and my mind. I have never felt more inspired to participate and become a part of the process. Because of that, on Tuesday, March 29th, I drove to Jefferson City and I filed to become a candidate to represent Missouri’s 81st House District.
Over the next several months I will listen to the concerns of the residents of the 81st district, and, if elected, will be your voice in Jefferson City. An office like this is a great responsibility and should not be taken lightly. This election is not about me, this is about us. It’s about creating a government that truly works for, and represents, the people.
The political environment at the Capitol is often contentious and a challenge for those that represent our big cities and for Democrats as a whole. We see a constant push from the opposing party to strip away our rights – our rights to determine our own laws and the ways we generate revenue; our rights of individual liberties and freedoms; the rights of women to control their own bodies; the rights of the LGBTQ community to be treated justly; the rights of the poor to have access to basic services; the rights of people not to be discriminated against or targeted simply because of the color of their skin or religion; the rights of all Missourians, and especially those who live in St. Louis. Because our party sits in the minority, our collective voice needs to be louder and stronger and ready to stand up to those working hard against us. We must be electing true progressives who will fight hard for all Missourians.
These last months have been a truly humbling and amazing experience and it’s exciting to think about what the future holds. I will work hard to earn the trust and respect of this incredible district, as well as your votes so I hope you will join me in a people-powered campaign to bring a true progressive voice to Jefferson City. It would be an honor to represent the residents of the 81st District in our State Capitol. I appreciate your support of our campaign and your vote on August 2nd.