By Zach Hester, Reporter • firstname.lastname@example.org
ALABAMA — Last week, Southern Torch sat down for a phone interview with Rick Neighbors, the Democratic nominee for Alabama’s 4th congressional district. Neighbors is challenging 12-term Republican incumbent, Robert Aderholt.
Neighbors stated he wanted to “drag Alabama out of last place” by investing in working people and preparing the State of Alabama’s youth for “jobs in the 21st century.”
Neighbors, who previously ran for the Democratic nomination for the seat in 2018 but was defeated by Lee Auman, stated his main objectives if elected, would be to “commit to education, keep people healthy by stopping the closure of local hospitals” and investing in new industries that bring high paying jobs to the area.
According to Neighbors’ website (neighbors4congress.com), his highest priorities will be investing in education through a “no-nonsense path” of making college debt-free, crafting trade agreements that benefit the people instead of benefiting large corporations, and reaffirming commitment to the Affordable Care Act.
When asked his reason for seeking the seat a second time, Neighbors said he believed Rep. Aderholt had “gutted an industry” with his vote for the Central America Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA) and further stated that Aderholt had an “opportunity to bring jobs to the fourth district” but did not get involved when presented with opportunities to bring new businesses into the district.
According to figures stated by Neighbors, the fourth district’s poverty rate has risen by over 50 percent since 2000, accompanied by poor wages that don’t adequately support the workforce.
Neighbors, who originally hails from North Carolina before moving to Hackleburg, cited great volunteers as the cornerstone of his campaign, which has transitioned from “Neighbors for Congress” to “Neighbors Helping Neighbors” in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Neighbors stated his campaign strategy had shifted from only asking for votes to providing masks to voters, as well as local hospitals, prisons, and the general public. The strategy has earned Neighbors the moniker of “The Mask Man.”
“We should not put profit before people,” he stated. “Corporations should only prosper when the people prosper. I’m not a lawyer, I’m a working guy who understands working people.”
Neighbors will face Aderholt in the general election on Tuesday, November 3.