Doug Jones talks about Rosa Parks, voter turnout at Montgomery church
Speaking tonight to a mostly black audience at a Montgomery Baptist church, Alabama Senate candidate Doug Jones invoked the memory of Rosa Parks on the 67th anniversary of her arrest, saying the state could be at another turning point.
“The world started to change because of one heroic seamstress who was tired and didn’t want to give up her seat on the bus,” Jones said. Parks’ arrest on Dec. 1, 1955 launched the Montgomery bus boycott, a landmark success early in the civil rights movement.
Jones said the state is at a crossroads and should turn away from what he described as the divisive leadership style of Republican nominee Roy Moore. The election is Dec. 12.
“We’ve got to decide what kind of Alabama we want to have,” Jones said. “Do we want to have an Alabama in which everyone is treated with dignity and respect and equally and we try to get good jobs and we keep our healthcare? Or do we want to have an Alabama that tells the country that we’re still a divisive people, that we only care about a certain segment of our population?”
Jones was interrupted by applause several times at Maggie Street Baptist and got a standing ovation when he mentioned the prosecution of two Klansmen who bombed the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham in 1963, killing four young girls. Jones was a U.S. attorney when he brought that case.
Jones would be the first Alabama Democrat to win a statewide race since 2008. Jones urged the crowd to help end that drought by showing up for the special election and making sure like-minded voters don’t sit it out.
“To make that needle move to the right side of history I need your help,” Jones said.
“You’ve got to call them on the 12th and say, ‘Hey did you cast that vote yet?’ You’ve got to call all your friends and neighbors. Get ’em out there. Make sure. Call and say, ‘Do you need a ride?’ “
Polls have shown Moore leading in the race. That’s despite allegations that surfaced three weeks ago that Moore sought sexual encounters with teenagers when he was in his early 30s, about 40 years ago. Moore has adamantly denied the claims, saying they are lies intended to undermine his campaign.
Click here for all coverage of Roy Moore.
Arthur Griffin of Montgomery, 45, was in the audience at Maggie Street Baptist tonight and said Jones has the right message and has a chance to win.
“It’s really a team effort,” Griffin said. “He needs the citizens to call one another and push his message to them, because a lot of times, we just give up on these races and we don’t go vote because we just assume the Democrat is going to lose. But this time we actually have a chance. We’ve got to stick together. We’ve got to help this guy.”
Montgomery County Probate Judge Steven Reed, a Democrat, attended tonight’s event and said it was fitting that Jones appear at the Montgomery church on the anniversary of Parks’ arrest. Reed was asked how important it is for Jones to energize black voters.
“I think it’s important that Doug energize all voters,” Reed said. “The black vote by itself is not going to win this election. He’s going to need to energize not only Democrats but also Republicans as well who are willing to look at the man vs. the party.
“As it relates to the Democratic base, they’ve definitely picked up a lot of momentum. I think he’s touching all corners of the state. And I think he’s talking about the issues that are really relevant to Alabamians and really relevant to what we need in a United States senator.”
Jones said if voters send him to the Senate he would seek solutions through compromise on important issues like healthcare.
“We’ve got to be able to reach across the aisle and talk to people,” Jones said. “We’ve got to have the kind of dialogue that it takes to move this state and this country forward. We don’t need to be talking at people. We need to be talking to them. And we need to be listening to them.”
via Real-Time News from AL.com http://bit.ly/2zzWl2c
December 1, 2017 at 08:18PM