Less than five weeks from today Americans will go to the polls and elect the 45th president of the United States. Our nation faces a monumental decision that may very well impact the fabric of our society for decades to come. It’s no state secret or a partisan attack about my support for Sec’y Clinton. We face a stark choice between professional experience and reckless unfamiliarity, even temperament versus hotheaded disposition, an attitude of inclusion versus language of hate. If you ask me the choice is abundantly clear and that’s why I’m supporting Hillary Clinton for president.
The ticket of Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine is the epitome of the “right stuff” in American politics. As a former U.S. senator, secretary of state, first lady, and a lifelong advocate for American families, no one is more qualified to be president than Hillary. She’s worked tirelessly on common sense issues like guaranteed paid family leave, high-quality preschool, comprehensive background checks for gun sales, and equal rights for all Americans, not just those of a particular race, religion, or sexual orientation. Her running mate, Tim Kaine, is a former city councilman, mayor, governor, and now U.S. senator who brings one of the most diverse public office skillsets imaginable to the table. I have served with Tim and this perspective and his expertise will be invaluable as the nation moves forward.
While Clinton and Kaine offer a vision of a healthy, welcoming, equitable America to its citizens and the world, Donald Trump’s dismal vision for our country is downright scary. Scratch beneath the surface and you find a man who can’t resist a crass comment about women or a cheap joke about the disabled. Trump thinks gaming the U.S. tax system is genius – it’s not. While Democrats want to restore voter rights because it’s the correct thing to do, Trump and the Republicans want to disenfranchise people they fear won’t vote for them. America is better than personal attacks, intimidation, and divisive grandstanding.
President Obama has now served nearly two forward-looking terms marked by economic recovery, improved global standing, and an advancement of minority rights. It’s time to hand the reigns to a candidate who will continue to toil for access to healthcare, LGBT equity, and an end to racial profiling. A candidate respected by world leaders, the business community, armed services, and Americans of all ages, races, and religions. A candidate that will not appoint far-right, backward-looking Supreme Court justices. That candidate is Hillary Clinton.
Professor Larry Sabato at the University of Virginia once said “Every election is determined by the people who show up.” Traditionally the 35th District has seen very high turnout in presidential election years. I implore you to exercise your right and privilege as an American to vote in this important election. A few things to remember between now and November 8:
- • You must vote in your city/county of residence.
- • You can register to vote or update your voter registration by October 17. You may check your status or update your address at www.vote.virginia.gov.
- • You can vote early. You don’t need to apply in advance, just walk into an absentee voting location and select a code that qualifies you to cast an early absentee ballot. There are 19 valid reasons to vote absentee in Virginia. All of the reasons and their associated codes may be found on the website listed above.
- • For those voting on Election Day the polls are open from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. and you must show a photo ID to vote. Many forms of photo ID are acceptable at the polls. Again, check the Virginia Elections website to be sure before you vote.
- • Please share this voting information with any friends or family members who may have a need to vote absentee.
- On November 8, we can put the final crack in the glass ceiling and elect the first woman president of the United States. Join me in this historic moment and send a message to the obstructionists – America is great and we’re on the right path to keep it that way.
Senator Saslaw represents the 35th District in the Virginia State Senate. He may be emailed at [email protected]