Republican gubernatorial candidate Lindy Blanchard emphasized education and law and order in a recent press release.

“For education, we have to empower parents and good teachers alike,” Blanchard said. “I will do this by ensuring that Common Core requirements don't tie teachers' hands, that their classrooms are safe environments for them and their students, that they have the support they need from their administration, and that we are recruiting and retaining the best talent.

“I'll make sure that parents' voices are heard, that they have the opportunity to choose the best learning environment for their child, and that if their child is in a public school, they can trust that they're being taught the skills required to be successful in life and not indoctrinated,” Blanchard said.

Blanchard is challenging incumbent Gov. Kay Ivey (R) in the Republican primary, along with Lew Burdette, Dean Odle, Dave Thomas, and Dean Young in the Republican Primary.

Yolanda Rochelle Flowers, Chad “Chig” Martin, Malika Sanders-Fortier, and Doug “New Blue” Smith are running in the Democratic primary for Governor.

Alabama was ranked 52nd in education by USA Today in 2019 – the last year of reliable data because of COVID-19 school closures. Alabama’s fourth graders were 47th in reading and 52nd in math on the National Assessment of Educational Performance (NAEP).

“I know that among our most significant problems are those who choose not to follow the law – from those pouring in over our open borders to the career criminals who have no respect for the lives of others or law enforcement,” Blanchard said. “I know that more can and should be done to make our state safer.

“We have several crises coming to a head in this state that I will address as your governor. First, there is a lack of resources for those with mental illness and substance abuse issues,” Blanchard added. “Second, we need more law enforcement, not less. I will fight those who wish to defund the police or tie their hands with in-house policies that [prevent them from] calling ICE to report illegal immigrants who commit crimes.”

Alabama had 22,322 violent crimes reported in 2020 according to FBI crime statistics. That is 453.6 per 100,000 residents. That is the 15th highest rate in the nation. The U.S. violent crime rate includes murder, rape and sexual assault, robbery, and assault. Some 471 Alabamians were murdered in 2020, 9.6 per 100,000 residents. That is the ninth highest rate in the nation and is up from 7.9 in 2019 and 7.8 in 2018. In 2021 Birmingham alone had 116 murders and 14 justifiable killings (including officer involved shootings).

Both major party primaries are on May 24. The two nominees will face off in the general election on Nov. 8.

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