by: Lawrence Gaughan

Guest Editorial Graphic Schilling Show BlogWhen I challenged him in 2014, our retiring congressional representative, Robert Hurt, often said, “The Fifth District seat belongs to no one individual, it is the people’s seat.”

I always admired Mr. Hurt for his sentiment.

As her predecessor in an effort to win the 5th District seat, I initially offered my support to this year’s Democratic nominee, Jane Dittmar. I did not pay much attention to the other party’s drawn-out primary.

Then I went to the first debate, and what I heard was amazing. I heard only one candidate who was thoroughly knowledgeable on the Constitution. One candidate who thoroughly understood how a congressional representative can have an impact on issues such as our huge debt, rising education costs, and job creation in our district.

This candidate was not Jane Dittmar. It was state Sen. Tom Garrett. Sometime later, I noticed only one candidate was not spending big party money on misleading attack ads on TV. The one candidate that I believe will be less beholden to a political party line platform and be a better representative of the overall will of the people of the 5th District is Sen. Tom Garrett.

I also believe that Mr. Garrett is the one candidate who will be willing to step away from his own party’s big-money political apparatus.

The two major parties do not serve citizens. They exist only to get people elected. The candidate with fewer ties to the party elites is the candidate who is more likely to relate to the concerns of a rural farmer in Gretna, or an electrician trying to make a living in Danville.

Regardless of whether you are a Republican, Democrat, or independent, and regardless of whether Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump wins the presidential election, as Tom himself has said, “There are two very bad choices for president” but for Congress, we have one good choice and one much better choice. I am comfortable giving my vote and my support to Tom Garrett, the much better choice.

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