To the editor:
Those of us west of I-495 are used to infrequent visits from elected officials. Those of us in the Berkshires are used to outright neglect. But Joe Kennedy is different. Whether he’s campaigning or not, whether there’s news coverage or not, Kennedy shows up in every corner of Massachusetts, including ours. Some people might argue it doesn’t matter where an elected official spends their time, but I disagree.
You can gauge an elected official’s priorities by where they spend their time, and with whom they spend it. Joe is clear on his priorities: people — that means people all over the state (and country), marginalized people, working people trying to take care of their families, people running small businesses, other people running for office, and more. By connecting with people, Joe is able to understand complex problems in detailed ways, hear ideas from those most affected by the challenges, and ensure everyone has a seat at the table. It’s not hard to see the difference between lawmakers who spend all their time inside the D.C. beltway and those who actually know the people they represent.
In addition to spending most of his time in the Commonwealth (70 percent compared to Ed Markey’s 30 percent), Joe spends a tremendous amount of time in central and western Massachusetts. He’s a regular in Pittsfield, both before running for Senate and since. There is no shortage of critical issues on Joe’s radar, but watching him support small business owners is a great example of his leadership. By walking our streets with local leaders and small-business owners, Joe appreciates, firsthand, the ways in which COVID-19 has shuttered many local establishments and the obstacles to reopening. His Jobs and Justice Initiative builds on his support of small business and American manufacturing, using the strengths of both to connect unemployed Americans with jobs needed to recover and rebuild from COVID-19.
We deserve a senator who shows up for us, knows us, and fights for us. Joe Kennedy has clearly shown that he will be that senator. Please vote for him during early voting or on Tuesday, Sept. 1.