Senate hopeful makes bus stop here

Published 12:00 am Sunday, May 26, 2002

He was part of Friday’s campaign bus tour for Democratic senatorial hopeful Julian McPhillips.

McPhillips calls himself "the people’s lawyer," and he wants to be "the people’s senator" as he seeks votes for the June 4 Democratic primary.

He stressed the need to move from current "corporate welfare" practices to helping everyday people’s needs.

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In addressing the needs of the Black Belt region, he said infrastructure and capital improvements are areas where congressmen should put emphasis.

A senator can do a lot to push economic development through the "bully pulpit." "You can work with state and local officials to bring in and inspire new (industrial growth).

…The whole West Alabama area, particularly the Black Belt portion, is suffering," McPhillips said. "It is suffering from sort of Third World country problems with living standards being way low (and) life expectancy standards being low."

McPhillips talked of the need to four-lane Highway 80 from Selma to the Mississippi line, and he favored an interstate from Mobile to Florence.

McPhillips praised State Senator Charles Steele for his leadership and bringing in innovative ideas. He calls Steele a friend, and if elected, McPhillips said the state senator will be constantly after him to aid the Black Belt Region.

A Marshall Plan for education is one issue McPhillips mentioned on his brief visit to Demopolis. If public schools are not improved, he said there would continue to be "re-segregation of America in the public and private schools. That’s not a good thing."

Another issue McPhillips hit hard on was what he called "equal justice."

McPhillips would also like to see equity in prison sentencing procedures between blacks and whites.

It’s been my law practice; it’s been in my heart; it’s my philosophy….It’s part of the Sermon on the Mound. It’s something that we all need to take seriously."

than anybody in the civil rights movement in this state.