I’m Rixi Melton and I’m a forward-thinking Democrat running for Congress in Texas District 21. I was born in Houston and raised in Austin. In 2012 I was drawn into the district lines of South Austin, where I have worked, lived, and studied since 1998. I am honored to have the endorsement of our district’s 2016 Democratic nominee, Thomas Wakely.
My platform is about how we treat people. If we can treat corporations like people, then surely we can treat people like people. I believe in funding public schools, Medicare for all, transitioning to a green energy economy, closing the wealth inequality gap, and securing the rights of all Americans—including ethnic, racial, and religious minorities—to equal treatment under the law. I also believe in gender equality, and I stand firmly beside my LGBTQIA friends and neighbors. We should abolish for-profit prisons and detention centers, and we should provide undocumented immigrants with a clear and safe path to legal status or citizenship. You deserve a Representative who will reflect the unique spirit and culture of the Hill Country. You deserve a Congressperson who will show up and listen.
We Could Use a Few More Moms in Washington
I’m not a politician or CEO or banker, but like many of you, I’d hold my own against any of my fellow candidates on a tractor or a horse, or helping to birth a calf. I also value education and got my B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin in Classical Civilizations. I know what it’s like to work retail jobs in the city for $15 per hour or less, to struggle to help family members who have debilitating medical conditions, and to worry about what the world will look like when my children are grown up.
My life is pretty normal for someone here in Austin: I get up with the kids, take them to school, work a humble job (Suzuki-method guitar teacher for children), enjoy as much quality time with my husband and kids as I can, get the boys tucked in at night, and do it all again the next day. Though there are always going to be challenges, I treasure the experience of living in Austin—it’s a wonderful, diverse city that’s full of culture, music, business, industry, and smart no-nonsense people who care about their neighbors. I’m ready to bring the South Austin I know straight to Washington, DC.
Public Servants Should Serve the Public, Not Themselves
What we’ve seen in Washington lately is not for our benefit: millionaires and billionaires—awash in lobbying and super PAC money—looking out for their own self-interest and political advancement; absurd photos of the Congressional men’s club laughing as they trade your healthcare for tax cuts for the rich; an EPA chief who thinks human-caused climate change is a farce and won’t lift a finger to protect our water and air; and Lamar Smith, our very own congressional lifer and one of America’s most embarrassing climate science deniers, who’s right onboard with every destructive and short-sighted policy Republicans can dream up. We’ve been forced to accept a sad truth about Congress: that too many of our representatives have not only lost touch with their constituents; they have officially abandoned the idea that their job is to represent and improve the lives of voters in their district. I want to change that.
If It’s Not Good for Our Kids, I Won’t Vote for It
I’ve always had a knack for recognizing when people are in trouble, and just like the people I’ve met since starting this campaign, I was raised to lend a helping hand when I can. Lamar Smith isn’t representing the good sense and compassionate spirit we share here in the Hill Country of Texas. I think it’s time for everyday citizens to have a say in Washington, not just at town halls or with voicemail messages to our congressmen that never get answered, but in the House of Representatives itself. It’s time for more women to have our say, and it’s time for moms like me to stand up and say we won’t let Washington throw away our children’s future. Enough with politicians trading harmful partisan policies and short-term thinking for campaign contributions. We need the kind of logical and compassionate long-term thinking that says, simply, that if it’s not good for our kids and grandkids, the answer is NO. I want to be in Washington to represent you every day, and to show Congress that the Texas Hill Country can help lead America towards a brighter future for all of us.
Courage and Compassion Will Bring Us Together
The challenges we face will be easier to bear if we face them together. Year after year, elected officials divide us by exploiting our fears. Courage will elevate us above our fears. We will measure our success by the way that all people—including women, children, people of color, and people in religious minorities—are treated. We will measure our success by the quality, access to, and affordability of healthcare. And, we will measure our success by narrowing the divide between the richest Americans and the poorest among us. We need to look forward with compassion, not backward with fear and anger, on the big issues that shape our lives.