Allen Thomas lays out campaign platform
Thursday, July 11, 2019
Affordable health care, improved broadband transmission and service to veterans are priorities for the Democratic candidate for North Carolina’s 3rd Congressional District seat.
Allen Thomas laid out the six pillars of his campaign platform during a news conference on Wednesday morning.
Thomas, who will be running in the Sept. 10 election against Republican candidate Greg Murphy, Libertarian Tim Harris and Constitution Party candidate Greg Holt, met with supporters at the Alice F. Keene District Park recreation building to discuss what he hopes to accomplish if he wins the Congressional seat.
Thomas said he has set goals in six major areas: health care affordability, infrastructure and broadband, military and veterans, education and training, hurricane response/climate and civility/bipartisanship.
He provided some specifics for each of these goals.
Thomas said he will work to ensure access to affordable healthcare and a reduction in cost for prescription drugs in all areas of the 3rd District.
Improved broadband and infrastructure are necessary to promote greater connectivity in order to increase business opportunities, Thomas said. He said that he has a goal to expand broadband transmission to all parts of the district and that he will advocate for improved infrastructure, such as better roads, deeper ports and more expansive railway services.
Issues surrounding the military and veterans are, perhaps, the closest to his heart, Thomas said, because of his own family’s involvement in the military through the years. He said he has heard about veterans who have been put off for months when trying to make appointments for services. At some bases, military families still live in areas that look like “a war zone” as a result of hurricane damage, he said.
Camp Lejeune has one of the worst water systems in the nation and that needs to be addressed, he said.
Education and the workforce is a fourth area of concern. Thomas said that he is a strong proponent of vocational training and certification programs that could result in high-paying jobs for skilled workers and would provide more job opportunities.
Thomas said he will also address hurricane and climate issues. The frequent number of hurricanes North Carolina has experienced has become “the new normal” and leaders need to figure out how to mitigate the damage, he said. Thomas said he does not want to see off-shore drilling developed at the expense of tourism, which is a lucrative industry for North Carolina.
Lastly, Thomas spoke of the need for civility and bipartisanship. He said he plans to run a civil campaign and said he sees a need for more bipartisanship, working together to solve problems. He said people need to step away from Fox News and CNN and get back to talking to one another on “a human level.”
If people need to solve a problem in their homes, they sit around a table and discuss solutions, he said. Corporate boards do the same. There is no reason why members of Congress cannot also behave that way.
The winner of the Sept. 10 election will fill the seat left vacant by Walter B. Jones Jr., who died in February, and will hold the office for the remainder of Jones’ unexpired term which lasts through 2020.
“We have a legacy to uphold,” said Thomas, referring to Jones as “a principled individual.”
Thomas said that if elected, he plans to keep Jones’ current staff in place for the remainder of the unfinished term.
Thomas described his style of leadership as “servant-leadership.”
“This is a job, not a ceremonial role. You are hiring someone to move eastern North Carolina forward,” he said. “We are all in this thing together.”