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Beyond the Podium: Interview with gubernatorial candidate Walt Maddox

(img: WPMI) Interview with gubernatorial candidate Walt Maddox

Walt Maddox, Democratic candidate for Governor of Alabama, spoke to NBC 15 News while on the campaign trail.

On his background:

“I’ve been mayor for one of Alabama’s largest cities now for 13 years, no hint of scandal and no ethics complaints. Tuscaloosa is the fastest growing city in Alabama when you look at the 2010 census. Our economic growth has been second to none. And our ability to reduce poverty was ranked ninth in the nation in a 2015 survey. We’ve been able to accomplish a lot in Tuscaloosa, and we’ve done it through the great recession and also did it through the April 27, 2011 tornado that destroyed more than 12.5 percent of our city.”

Why do you want to be governor?

“Stephanie, my wife, asked me the same thing. We’d be leaving a town that we love and a job that I absolutely cherish. But as mayor I see the defaults in state government.

We’re not taking care of corrections, we’re not taking care of mental health, roads and bridges need to be repaved or rebuilt, our education system continues to fail, and our health care system has collapsed. Recently the CDC ranked Alabama No. 1 in the nation when it comes to infant mortality.

These problems have to be addressed. We need results and not rhetoric.”

What would you want to accomplish in that role?

“On day one, hour one we want to expand Medicaid. Which will immediately have a $1.8 billion economic impact in Alabama. It’ll create 30,000 new jobs and sustain our healthcare network. If not, it will continue to crumble.

We want to pass the Alabama education lottery. With that we will have a college scholarship program similar to what you see in two year, so not only will it focus on four-year and two-year college scholarships, but also work-force development. The other thing through that lottery program, that we want to have universal pre-K. We’ve educated enough children Georgia, Florida and Tennessee. Alabamians deserve those two things. We plan on doing that, beginning that process on day one of our administration.

The difference that you find between the opponent and myself is she’s offered monuments and mountain oysters as solutions to Alabama’s problems. We’ve offered an Alabama Lottery, we’ve offered to expand Medicaid, we’ve detailed on our website how we will pay for it.

I’m a mayor and mayors solve problems. Alabama has huge problems and whether you’re a Republican or a Democrat we have to start addressing those problems or we’re never going to make this century the Alabama century."