Sweet begins hopeful run to the State House

Published 6:29 pm Monday, February 1, 2010

As a small crowd gathered with signs of support at Veterans Park in Hoover, Virginia Sweet launched her candidacy to represent District 43, which includes Jefferson and Shelby counties, in the Alabama House of Representatives.

Mary Sue McClurkin is the current representative.

“I have hope that, as Abraham Lincoln said at Gettysburg, we can have a government of the people, by the people and for the people,” Sweet said to the cheering crowd.

During her speech, Sweet touched on the importance of education and ethics reform.

She also said Shelby County is an excellent place to live, but her goal is to make the county an economic base so people can find jobs more easily.

“I have hope that if we shine the spotlight on Shelby County as the best place in the state to live, we can both live and work in this county,” she said.

Campaign manager Elliott Bell said he’s working for Sweet because of her qualifications and her desire for change.

“She’s very qualified. She has a doctorate in public policy,” he said. “She has always worked to better the community around her.”

However, Bell did concede that Sweet is facing a battle.

“She is, I believe, the first Democrat to challenge Mary Sue (McClurkin),” Bell said. “That’s the challenge.”

Sweet said it would take a changing of the guard to bring reform to Montgomery.

“We need some non-career politicians to do that, and that’s me,” she said.

She also said she would continue to fight against all challenges until Election Day — and possibly beyond.

“Until I am there, writing sound legislation, I won’t be finished,” she said.