By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
On Tuesday, July 1, Gary Palmer and State Representative Paul DeMarco both were at Oneonta High School in Montgomery for another candidate forum. This event was hosted by the Blount County Chamber of Commerce and was moderated by Blount County District Attorney Pamela L. Casey. The two are running the Republican Primary Runoff election on Tuesday, July 15.
State Representative Paul DeMarco said, “I can honestly say in the past six or seven months I have spent more time in Blount County than any other candidate in the last six or seven weeks.” DeMarco said that growing up his parents every month took him and his brother to eat at ‘Little Joe’s’ in Blount County.
Rep. DeMarco said that Blount County needs a Congressman who can be an advocate for Blount County. DeMarco said that the best way to evaluate a candidate is to judge them on how did they did in the past. Back when Jefferson County had an illegal occupation tax, people in Blount County were opposed to the Occupation tax. “There is no longer a Jefferson County Occupation Tax,” and DeMarco took credit for helping prevent the legislature from restoring the Occupation Tax after the courts declared that the county had been collecting it illegally (for years after the legislature had repealed the tax).
Rep. DeMarco said that he helped lead the fight in the state legislature against the current makeup of the Birmingham Waterworks Board. DeMarco said that Blount County has no representation on that board even though the waterworks pumps thousands and thousands of gallons of Blount County water out of Inland Lake. “It is not fair.” DeMarco said that he is confident that legislation reforming the composition of the Birmingham Waterworks Board will pass next year in the legislature.
Rep. DeMarco said that he has worked for the construction of the Northern Beltline which will help spur job creation. DeMarco said, “I have a great working relationship with both your mayors and your county commissioners.” Paul said that if he is elected for the first time there will be a Sixth Congressional District office in Blount County.
State Rep. DeMarco said that the best way to help Blount County is to grow Blount County. Let the people of Blount County grow jobs in Blount County like the people of Vance did with Mercedes. That way you have folks staying home and finding a job in Blount County. They spend their money in the county that they both work and live in and they generate more revenue for Blount County.
Rep. DeMarco said that he wants to partner with our local chambers of commerce to grow the Blount County economy and put more revenue through that growth so that local government will have more dollars for front line prosecutors and first responders. DeMarco said that he wants to work with your local officials, to partner with them so that Blount County grows so that there will be a future for your children and grandchildren in Blount County.
DeMarco said that 18 months ago he was talking about economic issues with leaders in industry and Governor Robert Bentley (R) and they emphasized the need for work force development. The State has opened up Alabama Industrial Training Facilities so that teens can learn how to use a backhoe, learn about safety regulations and other skills so that they have the skills when they finish school to get a good job and don’t have to leave the state to find a job.
DeMarco said that Blount County doesn’t need Washington DC telling Blount county officials what we have to do. The combination of luring new jobs here from outsiders looking to relocate and grow the jobs from the businesses that are here is what Blount County needs to do. Talk to the agriculture community and ask them what they need to grow that sector of the Blount County economy.
DeMarco said that we need to start sending people to jail in the scandals that are occurring in Washington. “The heads of these agencies have lost respect for the Congress and that means they have lost respect for the people of the United States.” There is something wrong when the IRS can target you like they did conservative groups for their political beliefs. DeMarco said, “Fix it (the IRS) now or get rid of that agency altogether.” He called for a, “Top to bottom examination of the Veterans administration.” “If they can treat our veterans like that with their healthcare, how do you expect they will treat us with our healthcare?”
State Representative Paul DeMarco said that he is from the district. “I always tell people that I am proud that I was married in the same church I was baptized in. Alabama is my home.” DeMarco said that we do not need a Congressman who will bring Washington DC values back to Alabama, what we need is a Congressman who will bring Alabama values to Washington D.C. because they have lost their way. DeMarco said that he will show up on the first day with the experience to be your advocate.
Rep. DeMarco said that he and his wife Jacqueline have a new son named Jack. When Jack was born his share of the national debt is over $60,000. “That is not fair to our children and our grandchildren.” To do something about the national debt we have to have men and women of courage.
DeMarco said that he has a track record of standing up and not only of taking on President Obama and Nancy Pelosi, but also standing up to his own party when they are in the wrong. DeMarco said that this healthcare law (Obamacare) is hurting us here in Alabama. Chilton County lost their hospital because of these rules that are coming out of Washington.
DeMarco said that if he is elected he will continue to live in Homewood Alabama and, “You will see me in the community.” DeMarco promised that he would be responsible committed and will be loyal to Blount County.
DeMarco’s Republican Primary Runoff opponent is Gary Palmer. Palmer co-founded the Alabama Policy Institute (API) and for 24 years served as its’ President.
The Republican Primary Runoff is Tuesday, July 15.
The Sixth District is currently represented by Congressman Spencer Bachus (R) from Vestavia who is retiring after this term, his eleventh term.
The eventual Republican nominee will still have to face Democrat Avery Vise and Libertarian Aimee Love in the November 4th general election.