When you place a 911 call for emergency assistance, you deserve to have full confidence that the call will be answered.

There can be no compromise when it comes to public safety.

That’s why I worked in the state legislature across party lines to ensure all Arkansans can have confidence in a well-funded, state-of-the-art 911 emergency response system.

Congressman French Hill, my opponent in this year’s Congressional race, correctly noted the vital importance of a reliable emergency response system in his article published in this paper last week.

But his article came just one day after he launched a misleading television advertisement attacking me for co-sponsoring a bill that helped fund the struggling 911 emergency response system in our state. Arkansans deserve better than such flip-flopping to score political points.

To their credit, last year Representative Michelle Gray and Senator Jason Rapert sponsored the Public Safety Act intended to “develop a next generation 911 system.” I was happy to join these two Republican lawmakers as a co-sponsor because I saw the obvious benefits of the legislation for citizens and law enforcement officials alike.

Not only did the bill pass with overwhelming support from both parties in the House and Senate, but Senator Rapert stated, “The 911 reform bill had overwhelming support from basically every county judge and sheriff and person involved in law enforcement and emergency services in the state of Arkansas.”

Local leaders and law enforcement officials called on us for support, and we responded. But my opponent didn’t seem to care about these vital services when he intentionally misled the public by leaving out key words from news headlines to attack me with this beneficial legislation.

I got into politics to help people – simple as that. That often means rising above the fray of partisan politics to address real issues that affect people’s lives.

I’ve formed a set of guiding principles in my years of public service: I prioritize beneficial policies over political attacks, I welcome collaboration from anyone seeking to make meaningful progress, regardless of party, and I place people above politics.

It’s time we had a Representative in Congress who shared these values.

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