Dr. Will Boyd is the Democratic nominee for U.S. Senate. Boyd spoke with 1819 News on Thursday about how his campaign is going and the issues confronting the state of Alabama that he is passionate about.
Boyd expressed confidence in his campaign, stating that it is “going extremely well. I like where I am at.” He commented that he has seen a lot of passion and enthusiasm for his campaign. He also shared that he recently received endorsements from both the AFL-CIO and the International Association of Machinists.
Due to division among Alabama Republicans “when it comes to labor,” Boyd feels he has benefitted.
“The United Mineworkers of America stood with me during the primary, and half of them are Republicans,” Boyd said. “Alabama is a right-to-work state, but they want the right to unite. They want to have the same channels of communication in the company that the corporation has.
“I am both pro-business and pro-labor,” Boyd continued. “I am a former business professor. I have taught business. I have helped people start businesses.”
Yet money isn’t everything, he noted.
“[Republican candidate Katie Britt] has $9 million in cash on hand, while I have $9,” Boyd joked. “There is a great distance there.”
In regards to the second amendment, Boyd favors the Democrats' "assault weapons ban" legislation.
“I think it is a step in the right direction,” Boyd said. He cited the high rates of gun violence, including gun suicides, in Alabama for the justification of banning certain types of weapons.
Boyd also said that he favors “extreme risk protection orders,” or red flag laws, to take guns out of the hands of people who authorities believe may pose a risk to the community or themselves.
Boyd was recently in attendance in Lowndes County when the USDA and EPA announced a new partnership to provide modern sanitation services to people in the Black Belt and other places around the country.
Boyd praised the effort but wants to know when this will be completed.
“Some of [the residents] have been dealing with this since 1987,” Boyd said. “We need to modernize our infrastructure.
“We have people without septic systems. It is taking a long time to get this money out there.”
Boyd urged the extension of existing sewer systems out to connect more people and the decentralization of sewers by creating independent sewer systems. He also noted that there are still people in rural areas with such low population density that there are no sewer systems to connect.
“We still have a long way to go,” he said.
While acknowledging that the state receives much of its revenue from the federal government, Boyd expressed wanting more.
“The state is very dependent on federal resources,” Boyd said. “Forty-three percent of the revenue we bring in as a state come from the federal government.
“We have to look at taking money available to us for transportation, particularly high-speed rail.”
Boyd said that the state should abolish the grocery tax because it is the tax that impacts people of low income the most.
In regards to balancing the budget, Boyd said that he favored modernizing revenues and using Keynesian economics.
However, Boyd noted that he favors addressing climate change, expanding Medicaid and protecting SNAP benefits (previously referred to as food stamps) ahead of deficit reduction.
State Rep. Chris England (D-Tuscaloosa) recently announced that he is stepping down as chair of the Alabama Democratic Party.
“I endorsed Josh Coleman for chairman,” Boyd said. “He is a candidate who has the experience as head of the Young Democrats to lead the party.”
Boyd said that it is “very important” for his campaign to have a well-led Alabama Democratic Party because they have the resources, the infrastructure and the ability to reach out to Democratic voters and mobilize county parties to wage a statewide campaign.
Boyd will face Britt and Libertarian John Sophocleus in the Nov. 8 general election.
To connect with the author of this story, or to comment, email brandon.moseley@1819News.com.
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