Brights balks at party labels

Published 10:00 pm Thursday, October 23, 2008

Bobby Bright may be running as the Democrat nominee for the 2nd Congressional District, but he assured Exchange Club members Thursday his campaign has all parties in mind.

“It’s not Republican or Democrat for me but what I can do and how I can do it,” Bright said. “Your agenda is my agenda.”

Bright told his audience he shares their conservative views, and those are things he would not abandon in Washington.

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“Labels don’t mean anything to me. My party’s given me the opportunity to say that, and the other party wouldn’t let me,” Bright said.

Bright said his label with the Democrat party could serve as an advantage for the people of District 2, since he will be part of the House majority if elected.

“I haven’t burned any bridges,” Bright said. “The Republicans have been on this seat 44 years. Give me two years, and if I don’t suit you, vote me out.”

Bright said a recent endorsement from Harri Anne Smith, who ran in the Republican primaries for the seat, is an example of the steps he’s trying to take in the Congress.

“She is doing exactly what we have to do in Washington D.C. — work across party lines,” Bright said. “She’s put the Wiregrass and District 2 ahead of the party.”

Republicans have criticized the Bright campaign and accused him of paying Smith for her endorsement, but Bright said it is something she should be praised for doing.

Bright said if elected, he would be available for Pike County residents.

“I promise good ethical government from Washington, and I’m going to be accessible,” Bright said. “I will be coming to Pike County and listening to the people and hearing what they have to say. We’ll bring our office to Pike County.”

Bright said he pledges to not vote for any tax increases, and to push for more affordable health care.

“We have 47 million Americans who don’t have health insurance,” Bright said. “We’ve got to come together in a bi-partisan fashion.”

Bright said passing tax credit incentives for health insurance are just one of the things that could make health insurance more affordable.

In ads by his opponent Jay Love, Bright said he has been accused of endorsing Barack Obama for president.

However, he said he has not and will not endorse either candidate for the election.

“I’m focusing on my campaign and getting elected to Congress,” Bright said. “Whoever people elect, I will do my best to work with them.”