The Future of Lenoir and Caldwell County on the Ballot Nov. 6

Phillip Price makes his case against Mark Meadows, schedules visit for Lenoir on Oct. 23

By Phillip G. Price

Editor’s note: This is an essay by Phillip Price, the Democratic challenger to GOP incumbent Mark Meadows. Both seek to represent the people of North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District, which encompasses a large portion of Western North Carolina. Information about an upcoming campaign event has been added.

Phillip Price

Phillip Price

LENOIR, N.C. – Imagine Lenoir and Caldwell County on the cutting edge of new green technology, embracing small-scale hydroelectric panels that generate green power from rivers, while maintaining the beauty of the environment that fuels tourism. Imagine growing hemp and manufacturing it to be used to replace oil-based plastics with biodegradable plant-based plastics.

Imagine the workforce for those new technologies being trained tuition-free at Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute and earning a living wage of $15 or more when they graduate with healthcare coverage for everyone.

This is not some pipe dream. This is how people in other countries live every day, every year. We can, too. All we need is the political will and leaders who are beholden to the people, not the billionaires who buy their votes in Congress.

Now look at Lenoir today. The poverty rate is 22.8 percent* – higher than North Carolina (15.4 percent), higher than the national average (14 percent). Remember when 11th Congressional District Rep. Mark Meadows voted for a $1.5 trillion tax cut for billionaires and corporations and said your wages would go up as a result? Come on, you know it’s not true. Paychecks haven’t gone up for most folks. Median income in Lenoir is $31,000 a year.*

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Solar energy works fine in West Virginia, which has far more cloud cover than North Carolina.

And how many of you are without healthcare today? How many more will lose their healthcare if Meadows gets his way and cuts Medicaid and Medicare while eliminating the Affordable Care Act that provides as many as 45,000 with healthcare in the 11th Congressional District today?

Now ask yourself, which Caldwell County do you prefer? The one Meadows has virtually ignored while playing insider politics in Washington? Or the vision I have for what can be if we stop giving tax cuts to billionaires and corporations and start investing in people?

hemp-crop-in-kentucky

The first legal Kentucky hemp crop was grown at the University of Kentucky Spindletop Research Farm in Lexington in August 2014. Photo courtesy Chase Milner.

That’s what this election is about on Nov. 6: Your vision for the future of Caldwell County, North Carolina and our country. We can have Medicare for all healthcare, publicly funded education, clean energy jobs that protect the environment and infrastructure investments like broadband internet that will unlock the hidden potential of our rural areas.

It’s up to you. Please vote for me, Phillip G. Price – a working man who has lived in Western North Carolina for 34 years and runs a sustainable green business in McDowell County – to represent the working people of Caldwell County and all of the 11th Congressional District.

Price to Visit Lenoir

According to a news release from his campaign, Price will explain his plan to reinvigorate the community when he holds a Town Hall from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 23, at the Caldwell County Public Library, 120 Hospital Ave NW in Lenoir.

Price runs a lumber recycling business in McDowell County. A husband, father, Episcopalian, carpenter, musician and sportsman, Price is not a career politician. He won the Democratic primary for the 11th District in May in his first political campaign.

*From Data USA.

© The Lenoir Voice, 2018.