|
|
The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • Hockersmith urges Democrats to speak out

  • Democrats need to get out of their comfort zones and into their communities to tell voters what their party has done for people—and what it is going to do, state representative candidate Zech Hockersmith said Saturday.
    • email print
      Comment
  • Democrats need to get out of their comfort zones and into their communities to tell voters what their party has done for people—and what it is going to do, state representative candidate Zech Hockersmith said Saturday.
    “We’re getting beaten by ourselves. We’re not carrying the message,” Hockersmith said at the Phelps County Democratic Club’s Stump Picnic at Rolla Lions Club Park.
    The candidate for the 120th Legislative District seat that has been empty for more than a year likened the Democrats to members of the churches pastored by his father.
    “They would say after the sermon that sinners need to be in church to hear that message,” Hockersmith said. His father would reply, “How many did you invite to come? How many did you bring?”
    Hockersmith also reminded the Democrats that “Jesus said to get out and preach the gospel.”
    The Democrats’ message is not the gospel, but it is a message about how people’s lives have been made better, Hockersmith said, and it needs to be told.
    “Democrats are hard-working people speaking out for other hard-working people,” Hockersmith said, and added later, “Middle-class people have rebuilt this country twice.”
    Related to getting the message out is getting the voter turnout up, he said.
    In recent elections, turnout has been around 10 percent to 12 percent, he said, and “to me that seems disgusting.”
    He told of a conversation with a 92-year-old Democratic man who told him, “You need to get a truck and pack it up and take people to vote.” That man told of how Franklin D. Roosevelt supporters would load up trucks and go from town to town and county to county, taking people to polls to vote.
    Hockersmith, of St. James, is a candidate in two elections in August.
    In a special election to find a successor to Jason Smith in the 120th Legislative District, he is running against Shawn Sisco, of rural Rolla, the Republican candidate. The winner will serve out the remainder of the term through the end of this year.
    Hockersmith is also a candidate in the primary election, running against Robert Mesger, of St. James, for the Democratic nomination for that same office.
    Sisco is running in the primary against Jason Chipman for the Republican nomination.
    The nominees in the primary will face off in November and take office in January.
    Hockersmith, a conservative on many issues, is running as a Democrat because he’s from southeast Missouri and “where I’m from, everybody is a Democrat. Even my Southern Baptist daddy is a Democrat.”
    Page 2 of 2 - Campaign literature at the stump picnic noted Hockersmith’s stances on the following issues:
    • Education: Hockersmith pledged to “fight for equitable funding for rural districts to ensure that your child is receiving the quality education they deserve.”
    • Employment: Hockersmith said he will work to create job opportunities in the district and “will both protect workers’ freedom to bargain and assist small business growth.”
    • Accountability: He says he is “prepared to stand up against self-interested politicians with pet projects and private agendas.”
    Hockersmith is a teacher and a small business owner. Married to a teacher, he is also a father.
    He ended his talk to the Democrats with a quote from John F. Kennedy. Paraphrasing, JFK said that one uneducated voter impairs the security of all Americans.
    “The answer to who is going to go out and educate these voters is right here,” Hockersmith said. “The answer is you.”
    Hockersmith has a campaign website at www.serve120.com.

        calendar