Congressional District 9, U.S. Representative — Sarah Smith

Sarah Smith (Courtesy Photo)

What are specific ways you have helped people of color and/or the immigrant community?

I am the only candidate in this race with an explicit racial justice platform:

Rather than speak in generalities about “equality of opportunity” I am using my platform to amplify the message that this country is built on violence and structural injustice against communities of color.

In my own personal life, I have spent time volunteering with the Indian Society of Southern Arizona while attending college and worked with the Iskashitaa Refugee Network. During the course of this campaign, I have used my platform to elevate communities of color and equity of opportunity including the importance of strengthening our immigrant communities. It is incredibly important to me to elevate marginalized communities who need their voices heard the most.

What is the biggest legislative priority for communities of color and the immigrant community in the next few years? Do you think there are legislative concerns that are unique to these communities?

I absolutely think there are legislative concerns that are unique to communities of color and immigrant communities. My top priorities include abolishing ICE, reforming our immigration system, closing for profit prisons, and detention centers, holding police accountable for violence against communities of color and fighting structural such as discriminatory zoning, land-use practices and exclusionary policies.

In general, my plan to repair the safety net of this country, including Medicare for All, a national minimum wage, affordable education and a federal jobs guarantee would benefit marginalized communities who suffer disproportionately from poverty, lack of access to quality education, and poor health outcomes.

What are specific ways that the office you seek would affect communities of color and the immigrant community, if you are elected?

Congress has a duty to represent all Americans and hold the executive branch accountable for abuses of power. Our congressional representatives are failing spectacularly in both cases. Our representatives have stood by while Trump persecutes immigrants, stokes racial tension, gives massive handouts to his billionaire friends, and embroil us in needless international conflict.

Rather than stand in the back and complain about the powerlessness of Congress, I would use my national platform to call attention to these injustices at every opportunity. I have made this a priority during the course of my campaign and will continue to do so as a representative in Congress. This is not a time to be silent and compromise. It’s a time to fight with everything we have. If elected to congress, my office would speak plainly, fight loudly, and act boldly to make the United States a truly just society.

Adam Smith