By SHERI GASSAWAY
State Auditor Nicole Galloway never expected to be running for governor. She didn’t come from a political family. Her mom is a nurse and her dad is an engineer for a general contractor.
“When I launched this campaign for governor a year ago, I never imagined where we would be today – the economic and public health crisis we would be facing,” she said. “But I knew that Missouri’s working families needed a change, and I’m even more certain of it now.”
Galloway, a Democrat endorsed by the Missouri AFL-CIO, made the comments during a socially-distanced, outdoor meet-and-greet fundraiser in Barnhart Oct. 6 hosted by Bob Butler, chairman of the Jefferson County Democratic Central Committee and former District 112 House of Representative candidate.
SUPPORT LABOR FRIENDLY CANDIDATES
Prior to her speech, she recognized two other Labor-endorsed candidates in attendance – Representative Doug Beck (D-Affton), who is vying for the Senate seat in District 1, and Laborers Local 110 member Terry Burgess, who running for the House seat in District 113.
If elected, Galloway would be the state’s first female governor. She comes from a union family. Her great grandfather worked on the Gateway Arch as a member of Operating Engineers Local 513, and she has numerous uncles, cousins and other family members who are also members of Local 513.
Galloway urged voters to support Labor-friendly candidates to stop the attacks on working families, including repeated attempts by the Republican legislature to implement so-called ‘right to work’ and efforts to weaken prevailing wages laws.
“The legislature would love to pass another ‘right-to-work’ bill, and Gov. Parson has said that he’s going to sign it if it comes to his desk,” Galloway said. “But next year, there’s a surefire way to make sure that doesn’t happen – by electing worker friendly candidates and having a veto pen on the second floor.”
CONTAIN THE VIRUS, REBUILD THE ECONOMY
Galloway said the most important task for the next governor will be to contain the spread of the coronavirus and rebuild Missouri’s economy.
“The question is will we rebuild in a way that working folks can get back on their feet or will we continue to ignore science and distract and rebuild only for well-connected special interests?” she asked. “I am running for governor to put Jefferson City back on the side of working families and to act with urgency to protect our Missourians.”
TIME FOR A CHANGE
Galloway noted that Parson has been in Jefferson City for almost two decades. He served as lieutenant governor until he was appointed governor in June 2018 following the resignation of Republican Gov. Eric Greitens. Prior to that, he served in the Missouri House and Senate.
“If he had a plan for our state’s most pressing problems, we would have seen it already,” she said. “He has failed the test of leadership, and it is time for a change.”
Galloway has developed a plan to address the spread of the virus based on containment, mitigation, data and science so Missouri doesn’t have to shut down the economy again and schools can safely reopen.
“I’m a mom of three little boys, and I am eager for them to get back to in-person learning,” she said. “It’s vital for them, and it’s vital for our economy so parents can get back to work. But Gov. Parson just doesn’t get it, and he doesn’t get it when it comes to healthcare either.”
Parson campaigned against Medicaid expansion in the midst of a pandemic and with his attorney general in a lawsuit to get rid of protections for pre-existing conditions, Galloway said.
“I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have a pre-existing condition, but he went further than that – he has kicked 100,000 kids off of their health insurance,” she said. “Terminally ill children were turned away at routine doctor’s appointments.”
Galloway said she has a plan to help those children and expand Medicaid. She will also work to ensure coverage of pre-existing conditions and to lower the cost of prescription medication.
“I do have a message for Gov. Parson – ‘If you mess with my children, I will have a word with you. If you mess with Missouri’s children, I will build and army, I will run against you, and I will win,’” Galloway said.
A PLAN TO END WASTFUL SPENDING AND CORRUPTION
Galloway has pledged to put an end to wasteful spending and corruption to help Missouri’s economy and make it more attractive to businesses. Her plan includes:
- A development and incentive strategy that is transparent, attracts new business to Missouri and uplifts communities and workers.
- Transparent funding for education that prioritizes students, teachers, and outcomes rather than the re-election of career politicians.
- Giving workers a greater voice on the job through the freedom to collectively bargain and ensure that public works projects pay the prevailing wage, creating safer working conditions, and protecting workers from wage theft.
- Passing the Missouri Nondiscrimination Act.
- Expanding workforce development opportunities that create pathways out of poverty and teach the skills necessary for family-supporting careers, like the apprenticeship programs in the unionized building and construction sector.
- Expanding broadband internet throughout rural Missouri to connect even the most remote parts of our state to the world.
Galloway, who grew up in Fenton, is certified public accountant and certified fraud examiner. She was appointed state auditor by Gov. Jay Nixon in 2015, following the death of Tom Schweich. In 2018, she won a four-year term as auditor and is currently the only Democrat serving in a statewide elected office.
As state auditor, she has been the taxpayers’ independent watchdog. She’s uncovered more than $350 million in wasted or stolen taxpayer money – and brought more than 60 criminal counts against corrupt public officials from both political parties.
She supports the state’s prevailing wage laws and the minimum wage increase in 2018, campaigned alongside Labor in the 2018 “No on Prop A” campaign to repeal the phony “right-to-work’ and believes teachers should be paid a wage that values the work that they do.
You can donate to Galloway’s campaign for governor online at bit.ly/31UbDja or by mailing a check payable to Nicole Galloway for Missouri to P.O. Box 2115, St. Louis, MO 63158.