“I believe I have to earn your vote, and I am working really hard to do that,” said Katie Boyd Britt, Republican U.S. Senate candidate, during campaign events in St. Clair County on Thursday.  

“I am the only candidate in this race who was born and raised in Alabama. I am proud to be from Coffee County. I am proud to be from there because of the values instilled there.”

Britt discussed a variety of issues during events in Pell City and Moody, specifically her hopes for Alabama, support of veterans and what she believes are her qualifications for the role of senator.

“The first thing we did when I entered this race is I went to all 67 counties,” Britt said. “The most important things in life are faith, family, and freedom.”

Britt said that while she is immensely proud of Alabama, there are some things that the state must change moving forward.

Britt said, “We are 46th in the nation in access to mental health.

“In 2018, we wrote more prescriptions for opioids than any other place anywhere. We wrote 97 prescriptions for every 100 people, and this was a four-year low.”

Britt said that the opioid crisis has killed more young Alabamians over the last two years than COVID-19 and keeps citizens from being able to go to work and fully participate in the economy.

Britt also stressed the need for broadband connectivity, especially in rural places.

“Precision agriculture is not in the future; it is here. You need connectivity to thrive,” Britt said. “If we want 21st century jobs, we have to have 21st century infrastructure.”

Regarding education in the state, Britt stated, “We rank 49th in reading and 52nd in math. If a child cannot read by the third grade, the likelihood that they will graduate from high school goes down.”

Britt said that if one does not graduate from high school, there are fewer opportunities in life, and there is a much greater likelihood of being incarcerated.

Britt thanked law enforcement for their service to the state and nation.

“We owe you a great debt of gratitude, and I will always 'back the blue,'” Britt said.

Regarding the military and veterans, Britt was critical of the Biden Administration’s pullout from Afghanistan and emphasized the need for support for veterans.

“We must have leaders who will never leave our soldiers behind on the battlefield,” Britt said. “I think everyone here can agree that we all wanted our men and women to come home, but never did we see an American president get on bended knee to the Taliban. We pulled out and left American citizens - including women and children - behind. We left Christian missionaries behind.

“We are failing our veterans. We lost more veterans to suicide in the last eight years than we did during the entire Vietnam War.”

Britt affirmed her support of the border wall, specifically as a means to counter human and drug trafficking.

“I have been to the border and met with the Border Patrol. More men, women and children are being trafficked across the border than ever before. Enough fentanyl is coming across the border to kill every American four times over. We must put back in place Donald Trump’s Remain in Mexico policy, and we must finish the border wall.”

Britt said that the subject of her age often comes up on the campaign trail.

“I am 40 (which is) 10 years (older) than the Constitution requires,” Britt said. “I am older than Tom Cotton when he entered the Senate. I am older than Josh Hawley when he entered the Senate. I am older than Marco Rubio when he was elected to the Senate. I am older than Ron DeSantis when he became governor of Florida.”

Britt is a former chief of staff for incumbent Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Alabama).

“I owe a huge debt of gratitude to Richard Shelby, but I am not Richard Shelby 2.0.”

Britt attended a hotdog cookout at Pell City’s Park followed by a reception in her honor at Moody’s Red Diamond corporate headquarters.

Lillie Boddie, Britt, Mo Brooks, Karla Dupriest, Mike Durant, and Jake Schafer are all running for the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate.

Will Boyd, Brandaun Dean, and Lanny Jackson are running for the Democratic nomination for U.S. Senate.

Both primaries are on May 24. The winners will face off in the general election on Nov. 8.

To connect with the author of this story, or to comment, email brandon.moseley@1819News.com.

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