Democrat Jessica Ehrlich trying to do her part to curb the Republican majority in Congress listen10/30/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday | Listen to this entire show:
Republicans have controlled Congress for the past two years. This election cycle Democrats would need to win 25 seats in the House in order to win back the majority they had before 2010. Pinellas County Democratic candidate Jessica Ehrlich is trying to win one of them by beating out long-time incumbent Bill Young. Ehrlich is a former aide to both Republicans and Democrats in Congress.
“We’ve seen the most unproductive Congress in generations and part of that has been because of the gridlock that’s going on up in Washington and in particular the House of Representatives. It’s vital that we have new members of Congress, that we have a fresh approach, that we have members who go to Washington to actually represent their constituents to work together and build coalitions and actually deal and make the tough decisions that we have to do regarding our economy and dealing with our deficit and look to the future.”
Ehrlich may be fighting an up hill battle in her fight to oust the more than 40 year Congressional veteran. Young has nearly tripled Ehrlich’s fundraising and a poll over the summer had him leading 49-35%. But the Ehrlich camp is still holding out hope. In that same poll people who said they were sure who they were voting for, Young only led Ehrlich by five points. Ehrlich has repeatedly tried to debate her opponent, but Young hasn’t been available. Regardless, Ehrlich is still confident that people are fed up with Young enough to vote for her.
“We’ve got to have member who are people like myself who are people who have worked on both sides of the aisle who are willing to go and stand up for, not only their constituents, but to build coalitions with other members and make sure that work is actually being done because we’re not beholden to special interests or worried about the next election and a book deal or what’s going to happen at the next point, but that we’re really there for the right reasons and I’ve worked with those members of Congress when I was in Washington before and it’s amazing what can be done. We still have the ability to do it and that’s really what needs to happen.”
Ehrlich has support from Emily’s List and the New Democrat Coalition and has been endorsed so far by the Women’s Campaign Fund and an LGBT group, eQualityGiving. Her opponent, Bill Young started his political career in the Florida Senate in 1961 and has been a member of Congress since 1970. Bill Young did not respond to interview requests.