Candidate Name: Kathy Ellis
What office are you running for?
US House of Representatives, Missouri 8th District
With which party are you running for office?
November 3, 2020
Why are you running for office?
After the 2016 election, I travelled to Washington, DC, for the Women’s March on Washington. There, I met a woman, who was holding a sign that read something like, “If you take away my healthcare, I will die.” As a social worker for the past 35 years, I was familiar with telling my clients that the best way to work through trauma is to take action. I felt I had to take my own advice, and so I decided to run for Congress in 2018. Although I did not win then, we moved the needle. Many progressive ballot initiatives passed in the District, and more progressives came together than ever before. When I considered whether to run again in 2020, I felt that our work isn’t done. So, I launched my campaign for 2020 earlier this year.
The 8th District has been represented by the current incumbent for many years. As a long-time resident of the District, I have seen first-hand the impact that his polices have had: our rural hospitals are closing, our jobs are leaving, and our infrastructure is crumbling. It’s one of the poorest districts in the country, and it’s time for leadership that addresses the many crises facing the area.
Change is possible in this District, and elections are won and lost in our rural communities. People are ready for quality, affordable healthcare; strong, union jobs; and an end to the government exploitation and corruption in our poorest communities. I’m running for Congress to help bring that change to the District.
What is the biggest issue facing your community and how do you propose helping?
As one of the poorest districts in the country, there are many issues facing my community, but the one we hear about most often is healthcare. Our rural hospitals are rapidly closing, and for many in the District, they must travel 2-3 hours to access the closest medical center. In a state that didn’t expand Medicaid, and in a District with a high poverty and uninsured rate, healthcare is nonexistent in many parts of our community.
On the state level, we must expand Medicaid. On the federal level, we must work to ensure that all people, regardless of income and zip code, have access to the healthcare they need. That’s why I support moving the United States to universal healthcare, and I believe Medicare-for-All is a smart way to accomplish this goal. As long as insurance companies and for-profit organizations run our healthcare system, we will continue to suffer. We need a new plan.
What is the most recent book you read?
Where the Crawdads Sing
Do you have any kids/pets/talking houseplants?
I have three dogs, Sophie, Lilly, and Curry. You may see them in our campaign materials throughout the election cycle…
How can our readers get involved in your campaign?
Readers can get involved in our campaign by visiting our website, https://www.ellisforcongress.com/join-us, or by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, if any of your readers are ever in the area, we’d be happy to show them around the District and let them see first-hand the impact of Republican policies on our community.
What question do you wish we’d asked, and what is your answer?
I often get asked why in the world I’d run in such a red District. It’s an important question, and the answer is simple. Until we start investing in our rural communities, and laying the groundwork for future candidates in these areas, we will not move this country forward. We need progressives running at all levels of our government in every community. This campaign is about more than just winning; it is about empowering community members to realize that change is possible when we work together. The Republicans have not abandoned the 8th District, and we shouldn’t either.
Post created from answers submitted by candidate to our Meet the Candidate survey.