My Turn, Scott Huffman: We deserve better than Ted Budd

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 10, 2021

By Scott Huffman

We swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States when we join the military or assume an elected office.

In both cases, we become public servants. We are duty bound to protect and defend you, the people. This oath compels us to act in a manner that should require honesty, integrity and a willingness to do what is right for others and not necessarily ourselves.

Ted Budd has broken all of these promises in the most egregious and vile manners.

Let’s start with the big lie of election fraud. If I thought that my vote was stolen, I would be angry. If I truly believed that there was no other political recourse than to violently revolt to protect our most sacred right in this democracy, then maybe…maybe I would resort to extreme measures. At the very least, I can completely understand the desperation felt by those who feel disenfranchised. (Let’s ask African Americans how it feels to have their votes threatened to be canceled, or be prevented from voting at all.)

Americans get their information and news from different sources. However, the primary source of this information should be their elected officials, like their president and their congressional representative. Ted Budd failed to be an arbiter of this information and exploited his base by lying to them about their votes being stolen. He then voted to disenfranchise and remove the voices of millions of African American voters. He had no problem with the states where Trump won. However, he’s so mortified that more Americans chose Joe Biden that he broke his oath and lied to America for two months. These lies culminated in a murderous attack on our seat of government in attempts to disrupt a Constitutional process. Death and violence followed at the hands of people led to this place of desperation by men like Ted Budd.

Budd has also failed his district when it comes to economic justice and the welfare of its citizens. However, he has gladly reaped the benefits that the government can offer for his own personal enrichment. While North Carolina lost 16% of its businesses, Ted Budd drove the maximum of $10 million to his already wealthy family business, The Budd Group, through Paycheck Protection Plan loans. He then voted repeatedly to deny aid to Americans in crisis. He continues to condemn further relief proposed by President Biden for suffering Americans. Perhaps it’s because the current relief package is geared more toward smaller businesses and not the richest 1% who fund Budd’s campaigns and dictate his policy decisions.

Ask yourself: what has Ted Budd done for you? Has he helped increase your wages? Has he protected your right to vote? Has he done anything to promote the economic wellness of the area? Just see for yourself. Don’t take my word for it. Look up your tax bracket and then see how Ted Budd votes to support you. Consistently, he votes to support the extreme rich who benefit from our working class tax dollars. He’s fine handing $2.3 trillion in tax cuts to the wealthy, but he doesn’t believe that working class Americans deserve a $15 an hour minimum wage. (If wages had kept pace with production values, the minimum wage would be $24/hour.)

Ted Budd has told us who he is repeatedly. He has told us that he doesn’t mind chants of “white power” in his district and his actions to attempt to silence millions of Black votes confirm this notion. He has chosen the extreme rich repeatedly, further condemning the rest of America to labor in silence and accept that they have no upward social mobility. Men like Ted Budd climbed the ladder and pulled it up behind them. They then look down upon you and curse your desire to be there with them. Budd has done nothing to advance the health and wellness of our district, only spreading disease and lies to further inflame our already divided nation.

Americans should be able to trust their lawmakers. They need to believe them when they say “I’m here for you and I will always protect you.” The reality is that Ted Budd harms us while pretending to care about our welfare.

We deserve better than Ted Budd.

Scott Huffman is originally from Rowan County and ran against Rep. Ted Budd, a Republican who represents the 13th Congressional District, in the 2020 election.