ABILENE, Texas. (KTAB/KRBC)- The pandemic has disrupted the daily activities of people all around the world, including politicians running for office. With November right around the corner, both candidates running to represent District 24 in the Texas State Senate discussed the impact of the pandemic on their campaigns.
“We are moving towards shaking digital hands, or virtual hands is what we call it,” said Democratic candidate Clayton Tucker.
As the pandemic rages on, State Senator Dr. Dawn Buckingham and Democratic candidate Clayton Tucker have found ways to use technology to stay connected with the people of District 24.
“We’ve been focusing pretty heavily on virtual town halls. So we had one about college issues, one about youth issues. We’re going to be having some about, we had one about regenerative agriculture, and we’re going to be having one about education coming up soon as well,” said Tucker.
“The gatherings are just kind of smaller, but we’re looking for other ways to get out and meet people, spending a lot of time outside, doing a lot of phone and video interviews, and so we’re just reaching out to all of our folks every way we can,” said Dr. Buckingham.
Despite the candidates having different political views, both campaigns have worked separately to listen and lend a helping hand to those who need it during the pandemic.
“Our office has been working incredibly hard throughout this whole pandemic, being sure that all of our constituents have access to factual information and any help they needed,” said Dr. Buckingham.
“There’s been cases where we found people who needed masks, or needed hand sanitizer, even found some people who needed diapers and food, and then we would try to connect those folks with the appropriate agencies,” said Tucker.
For those deciding whether or not to send children back to school in the fall, Tucker says opening schools before it is safe to do so could be problematic.
“If we open schools up too soon, in an untimely, unsafe manor, the numbers are going to get worse, and the simple fact of the matter is we don’t have the number of schools and the number of classrooms to really have safe social distancing,” said Tucker.
Tucker says he is not satisfied with Governor Greg Abbott’s response to the pandemic, but Dr. Buckingham disagrees.
“Governor Abbott’s been in a tough position. I think everyone’s been in a tough position, but I think now we’re at the point where we really know how to modulate the spread of the virus, to know how to treat these patients better. Let’s get Texas opened back up,” said Dr. Buckingham.