Many voters in the VA9th support Anthony Flaccavento because he has a realistic vision for how rural areas can pull themselves up by the bootstraps, not through food stamps and welfare, but through targeted investment. Flaccavento formalized his plans into the Rural Progressive Platform, upon which his candidacy is largely based. In a recent article, Why Rural America Isn’t a Lost Cause for Progressive Ideas, Yes! Magazine recognized the platform as a dynamic program that’s being adopted by candidates in other states like Pennsylvania and New York.
Describing the program, Yes! details, “The platform outlines a framework for progressive values within a rural context through the lens of three central elements: land, livelihood and community. It provides progressive policy examples that cater to each of those elements, including increased investment in sustainable farming, ending policies that undermine organized labor, and expansion of rural health clinics and addiction treatment centers.”
Largely based upon the platform, the article relates that rural politicians around the country are “buying into a new way of campaigning…talking about raising the minimum wage, universal health care, debt-free college and investing in local assets, like natural landscapes and small business development, instead of industrial recruitment.”
What have the Republicans offered to date? Tax cuts for the rich, and the busted promise of trickle-down economics. In the article, Flaccavento disagrees, stating, “Trickle-down economics has been a disaster for most rural places, and we need a bottom-up alternative,” which is a common refrain in his campaign speeches. On his website, Flaccavento further elaborates. “Forty years of cutting tax rates for the wealthiest people and the biggest corporations has not led to widespread prosperity. On the contrary, it has made a few people unimaginably rich, while diverting resources away from fixing serious problems and building real wealth. Nowhere could this be more true than in Southwest Virginia.
As the Yes! article points out, Flaccavento’s ideas are taking hold in other races. One example is Emily Martz, who is running for office in New York’s 21st Congressional District, who Yes! quotes as saying, “We absolutely have the power to create jobs that can sustain families if we invest in our two biggest assets, which are our people and our natural resources.”
Our current representative, Morgan Griffith, hasn’t promoted a single cause not motivated by his corporate donors or Republican policies as spearheaded by President Trump. He’s a parrot for the wealthy and the Republican party, not an advocate for the VA9th. We need a Congressman with the ideas, energy, and focus to help the VP9th prosper. As Flaccavento’s ideas gain national recognition and acceptance, it becomes clearer that he is the best choice.