Tribune-Courier News Reporter
U.S. Senate Candidate Alison Lundergan Grimes visited Marshall County last Friday as part of a 10-day, 50-county jobs tour across the Commonwealth.
Grimes spoke at a rally on the steps of the Benton Courthouse on Friday afternoon.
“I stand here today as your Secretary of State because Marshall County showed up – indeed the only female constitutional officer we have, the youngest female secretary of state in the nation and it will be because of Marshall County that Kentucky will have its first female United State’s Senator.”
Grimes said Marshall County is home to several of its own hard-working elected officials, but in Washington the county is missing someone who is willing to fight for its interests.
“Kentucky deserves someone who wants to put Kentuckians back to work and that is the No. 1 priority of a United States Senator,” she said. “Kentucky and this nation are ready for someone that believes as I do, that it’s not just a minimum wage it’s a living wage and each and every citizen deserves that. Mitch McConnell has said no to increasing the minimum wage 15 times.”
Grimes said if elected it is her plan to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10.
Another highlight of Grimes’ speech on Friday focused on eliminating the pay gap between men and women.
“The women of this state – 53 percent of the electorate – are ready for someone to say 79 cents on every dollar is not acceptable,” she said. “Equal pay for equal work must be a reality.”
Grimes said if elected she would fight for equality on the pay scale. She said McConnell has voted against the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act and voted twice against the Paycheck Fairness Act.
Grimes said it was her mission to build a stronger Kentucky by bringing in jobs, which she could only do with the support of the people of the Commonwealth.
After the rally Friday afternoon, Grimes spent almost half an hour talking with locals one-on-one.
Tiffany Carlson, 35, of Benton, said she sees Grimes speak every time she can because she agrees with her plans for the state.
“Equal pay for equal work is one of the biggest disagreements I have with our current senator, but Alison is also very personable and approachable,” she said. “I’ve spoken with her several times and I feel like if she was elected she would actually take the people’s concerns to Washington.”
Senator Mitch McConnell was also in Kentucky on Saturday for a series of meet and greet events in five cities. McConnell visited the towns of Liberty, Russell Springs, Albany, Burkesville and Edmonton.
Polls show Grimes and McConnell in a dead heat in the contest.