By Rep. Darrio Melton
This Labor Day was a time for family and friends to come together and enjoy a day off in celebration of the American Labor Movement–the men and women who have worked hard to guarantee honest pay, safe working conditions, and fair treatment for the people who built this country.
The labor movement was never about getting something for nothing. It was about the honesty and dignity of a hard day’s work.
Yet our legislative leadership is pushing Alabama into a second special session to do the job that they didn’t get done in the regular session or in the first special session.
Imagine for a second telling your boss that you’ll need to be paid to come to work on Saturday and Sunday to finish the work you weren’t able to do on Thursday and Friday–and you’ll expect pay for that weekend work. That’s exactly what the Republican supermajorities are doing to the people of Alabama.
They had the opportunity to complete the tasks on time–but they chose to only bring up trivial bills instead of prioritizing a budget.
They have the option of considering new ideas the Democrats have put on the table to solve the budget crisis, but they’ve chosen to shut the door and only consider internal solutions from the good ol’ boys club.
They have the option of bringing people to the table to help find a solution, but they have only offered seats to the inner circle of Republican leadership, who still can’t seem to agree.
The fact is that Labor Day is a time to celebrate the American Dream and embrace American ingenuity–but it looks like the Republican supermajority has missed the memo.
They’re refusing to open the door and consider options on the table, and the people of Alabama are paying the price for it. It’s time to demand better, because we frankly don’t have time for a third special session.
It’s time to quit playing politics and prioritize the people of this state–and do the hard work the job requires.
Rep. Darrio Melton is a Democrat from Selma. He was elected to the Alabama House of Representatives in 2010 and currently serves as chair of the House Democratic Caucus.