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The Texas Blue
Advancing Progressive Ideas

On The Record: Tammie Hartgroves

For this episode of On The Record, we speak with Tammie Hartgroves, delegate to the 2004 Democratic National Convention, president of the Central Texas Democratic Women and precinct chair for precinct 63 in McLennan County.

What would you say are the primary issues concerning your area?

The most important issue is the economy. Increasing gasoline prices, an unstable job market and receiving a fair wage for a days pay are our main concerns.

Drinking water quality is a local issue. We’ve had some notoriety with our water pollution in north Bosque by dairy farmers. It continues to be a problem.

Through the effort of a task force, Congressman Chet Edwards and U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison kept the local V.A. hospital open. We’re looking at that hospital to become a center for the returning veterans. Right now, there are not enough resources for our veterans.

How do state politics affect your neighborhood?

We are watching the Trans Texas Corridor unfold. It affects the people around us. The water issue affects us locally, also.

CHIP will affect us if they don’t get more children signed up. We all pay when health care is not compensated.

The school bond elections has effected us because McLennan Community College is one of our local colleges. A lot of our local work force comes through MCC, like nursing, radiology, respiratory therapy, E.M.T, police officer training and cosmetology.

Who are some of your political heroes?

Ann Richards and John F. Kennedy are personal political heroes of mine. Barbara Jordan, because she told it like it was. She was very much in to creating equal opportunity for everyone.

What are you looking forward to in the coming cycle?

I hope that we elect a Democratic president and are able to win a majority in the Texas House and the Senate in Washington. If we win the majority in the Texas House, we will be able to get a new speaker.

We need a new speaker because Craddick has ruled with an iron hand, especially in the last legislative session. He wouldn’t allow people to speak, and his own aides walked out.

Craddick’s very partisan in his appointments and the way he votes, whether it’s for the good of Texans or not. He votes with his Party and not for the good of all Texans.

As a health care provider I have to worry that we’re going to have the money and the legislation that will take care of our medical needs. I understand when people are faced with paying grocery or electricity bills versus buying medication they need. They must opt for what for what will affect their family the most.

What one thing would you say a political organization never has enough of?

Money and volunteers are very important. It takes money to help the candidates and keep headquarters open.

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