YDATL Blog NOTE: The opinions expressed by our individual bloggers are their own, and not necessarily those of Young Democrats of Atlanta.
Sunday, May 14, 2006
Sheila Jones, standing up for Georgia Democrats
There's been a lot of discussion on Blog for Democracy recently about Representative Sheila Jones in House 44. It seems that challenging the incumbent is becoming a tradition of sorts in House 44, but I can't help but feel Sheila's opponents just haven't paid attention to her record of commitment to the Democratic cause in Georgia.
To start with, Sheila Jones is and has long been a strong voice for workers in Georgia. She's spent more than 26 years working for Lockheed and been an active member of the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers. And as a state rep, she voted against HB 59 that strips Atlanta of the right to promote living wages. Why, then, does Steve Lee feel safe claiming on his website that he will be “the only candidate who will fight to achieve a livable wage in District 44”? I don't know anything about Steve Lee, but I see no reason to impugn Sheila's record on fighting for decent wages in Georgia.
Sheila has also fought back against the Republican disenfranchisement strategy known affectionately as HB 244. Not only did she vote against the Republican strategic agenda, she went on the offensive after the bill passed, speaking to the Young Democrats among many groups about what the bill's effects would be and how to combat them. Sheila went to bat for us in a big way when the chips were down on voter ID – why on earth should we want to replace her?
Not least of the reasons I have no interest in Sheila's opponents is their conspicuous absence at recent Cobb and Fulton party events. Sheila was a very welcome presence at the Cobb J&J dinner two weekends ago, and she worked hard to be at both the CCDC and FCDP breakfast/brunch events yesterday. Her opponents have thus far been nowhere to be found, at least not where I've been able to see them. I hate to break it to you, Steve and Ashley Harris, but you've got to show you care about us, the loyal hardworking Democrats, before we'll think about caring about you. We're your volunteers, your contributors, and your primary voters. Snub us at your peril.
The bottom line is that Steve and Ashley have mighty thin resumes compared to Sheila when it comes to fighting for us regular folks, which is part of the reason Sheila was presented with the Joe Mack Wilson People's Champion Award at the Cobb J&J dinner. Sheila's fought for her people in House 44 and all of us in Georgia – why would we want to reward such hard work with a pink slip?