Home Election 2018 OPINION: Why women should choose Sappington over Edwards

OPINION: Why women should choose Sappington over Edwards

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The Nelsonville native is the first candidate to announce plans to run for the Ohio House's 94th District in 2018.

Opinion writer Maddie Kramer argues Taylor Sappington is the state representative candidate women can trust. 

Incumbent State Representative Jay Edwards, a Republican, debated Democrat Taylor Sappington, current Nelsonville City Council member, at Ohio University on Oct. 29.

The candidates for Ohio House District 94 debated several hot button topics, including women’s rights regarding abortion and sexual assault on college campuses. The candidates agreed on the idea of “changing the culture” surrounding sexual assault on college campuses, but disagreed on the issue of abortion.

Edwards has a history of being “pro-life”, which he repeated at the debate. However, he also stated that he was not elected to office “to work on” abortion issues. This should be concerning for women voters. When elected, a representative needs to work on and advocate for any issue that their constituents bring to them.

Issues surrounding women’s health and abortion are very relevant in the Statehouse. In December 2017, House Bill 258, known as the “Heartbeat Bill” came to the Ohio legislature.

This bill would make it illegal to have an abortion if a fetal heartbeat is detected, which could be as early as six weeks into pregnancy. This is extremely early, as many women only discover they are pregnant around this time. Edwards voted in favor of this bill.

However, Edwards did agree with Sappington in that he would advocate for funds to be allocated for sexual assault on college campuses. Sappington expanded on this, saying that the culture in the Statehouse needs to be changed as well, meaning holding politicians accountable.

Sappington’s stance on abortion is much different than Edward’s. Sappington is pro-choice and stated that it is important to change the current “radical” state legislature. Sappington also expressed interest in reducing the “pink tax”, a form of gender discrimination that targets feminine products and other products usually aimed towards women.

Sappington also stressed that women’s health — and healthcare in general — needs to be addressed in the Statehouse. He has been endorsed by NARAL Pro-Choice Ohio, Human Rights Campaign, and Planned Parenthood Advocates for Ohio. Sappington continually shows that he is the candidate for women. Edwards has been endorsed by Ohio Right to Life, a pro-life organization.

The endorsements speak for themselves. Sappington is a better candidate for protecting women’s rights and will fight for them in the Ohio Statehouse. Edwards has a history of voting to impede on women’s rights. This is why it is important to go to the polls on Nov. 6.

Remember to find your polling station and make it to the polls. You can find your polling station here. Consider casting your vote for Taylor Sappington for Ohio House District 94.

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