Kimberly Lightford has served as 4th District senator since 1998, and we believe she has earned another term.

Lightford has, among other accomplishments, sponsored legislation to expand HIV/AIDS testing in prisons, fought for stricter regulations of the payday loan industry, and supported increases in the minimum wage.

As chair of the senate’s education committee she has pushed for a school funding system that relies more on income taxes than property taxes. She does not gloss over the state’s dismal ranking of 48th in the country in school funding, and is dedicated to finding solutions.

Yarbrough’s opponent, James T. Smith, is a rare political outsider looking to make a difference for all the right reasons. He certainly could be a viable candidate in years to come, but at this time it would do him good to work to balance his idealism with a thorough understanding of the political process. Identifying problems is one thing, but proposing realistic solutions is another, and Smith has yet to do so.

Lightford’s alliance with, or at least acceptance of, local political hacks such as Chris Welch and Eugene Moore is cause for some concern. Still, Lightford says she’s beholden to no one but the district’s voters. Her record supersedes her political networking, and provides ample reason to support her re-election campaign.

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