Democratic U.S. Senate candidate Rep. Kendrick Meek told students, local business owners and campaign supporters Thursday his vision for Florida’s economy during a campaign rally at Florida State University.
Meek, a Florida A&M graduate, rallied throughout the state last week and spoke about North Florida’s needs on issues such as unemployment, education and health care.
“There’s great potential for North Florida,” Meek said. “This campaign is going to let people know that I’m going to make their life better.”
Some of the visions Meek has lined up include support policies which will to financially help families and students. The policies include better health care access for everyone.
Meek pointed out how he’s also focused on establishing an energy policy that includes alternative energy. He said this might help promote green jobs throughout the state.
“Energy will allow us to create jobs in Florida,” Meek said. “We can be the new energy example for others.” He added that universities and colleges would benefit from the green jobs.
Meek said as senator he will ease the financial burdens many college students have.
“Student loans, bright futures, all play a role in the community,” Meek said. “We plan to push the issue of affordability for students to pay off student loans.”
Patrick L. Mason, a professor of economics at FSU, said he has watched Meek’s career for a long time and supported him, especially in the issue involving unemployment and health care reform.
“I like what he did as a congressman,” Mason said. “I think he’ll be a fantastic senator.”
Local business owners like Morris Evans, CEO of Evans Construction & Development, Inc., can attest to the burden of unemployment. Evans said profits have dropped to 20 percent in 2009 and thinks that Kendrick can help fix the problem.
“I’m supporting Kendrick because he knows about hard work,” Evans said. “He’s someone I have a feeling he has the passion to turn Florida around.”
Meek said veterans need leadership when they come home. Ensuring veterans are cared for is a personal issue for Meek, who had an uncle who was a veteran.
“It’s important that we invest quality health care and jobs for our veterans,” Meek said.
According to the Center for Responsive Politics, an organization research group that tracks money in U.S. politics and its effect on elections and public policy, so far, Meek’s campaign has raised has more than $4 million. The campaign has more than $3 million in cash on hands and has spent more than $1 million. Individual contributions are accounted for 80 percent.
Meek said the campaign is doing fine but they can always do better.
“We’re going to continue to raise money,” Meek added.
Meek also collected petition signatures to get on statewide ballot for the Aug. 24 democratic primary.