Well hello there!

I'm James Cordrey, and I'm running in Missouri's 109th representative district.

You might remember me from some of my other Reddit posts - like Drunk Christmas Cards, or maybe The time I found and played this cool Batman Arcade Game or perhaps, even, My D&D posts.

Or maybe you've never heard of me before, and you're just now getting to meet me. Let me tell you some things about me, and what I care about. Then we'll get to the heart of the matter: Your questions.

I'm 31 years old. For a few more days, anyway. I like to read, write, and program small things that are useless to pretty much anyone who is not me. I'm a software developer for a medium sized company, I own my own small business, and I am currently going to school for a BS in Software Development. So, of course, right now was the perfect time to jump into politics, right?

I grew up bouncing around from place to place, but a recurring location was my grandfather's farm. I learned the value of a hard day's work, and what it really means to be a steward of the land. That respect for our planet, and the people living here, is probably the biggest push for me in running for office. I believe that people deserve every opportunity to live decent lives, charted by their own desires, thoughts and ambitions. Nobody should have a life "forced" on them based on where they were born, or the economic status of their parents.

This campaign isn't against anything; not directly. I'm not running "against" the Republicans, and I'm certainly not running against a specific person. I'm running for something. To help provide opportunities for all students to have access to a truly excellent education system. Farmers should find it easier to sell the product of their toil in marketplaces, without fear of large corporate farms undercutting them and driving them out of business. People are the heart of this campaign, and I want to run for everyone in the 109th district.

So. Where can you find out a little more about me? Well. My Campaign Page is a good place to start, and you can then jump over to my Website to learn a bit more about me. I can also be found on Twitter and Instagram if those are more your style. Of course, you can skip all of that and just ask your questions here. I'll do my very absolute best to skip the normal political non-answers and give you as honest, and thorough of an answer as I can. If there's one thing we know about Redditors, it's that we can hold people to a higher standard, am I right?

If you're interested in donating to my campaign, (and you live in the United States) you can find the form for that here.

... That was really long-winded. Sorry. Ask me your questions!

Edit: WOOF! That was a lot of questions, and I see I have, at this point, 34 more comments ready to go! I've gotta go for a bit, but you better believe I'll be back to answer those messages. (And if I missed one, reach out to me via PM on Facebook or here, and I'll get to it.)

Thanks guys, you've been great, and I'm glad I got some tough questions! You were wonderful.

Remember to register to vote, wherever you are, and make your voices heard.

Edit 2: Came back last night to answer more questions, then back again this morning to pick up the stragglers. You guys had a lot of really good questions, and they weren't easy, fluffy questions either! Thank you so much for your support, and thank you to the people I disagreed with - stay involved! I fully admit I might be wrong some of the time! If you keep talking, providing evidence, and being persuasive, you'll change minds.

Thank you again!

Comments: 1184 • Responses: 119  • Date: 

HeisenBohr418 karma

What are your views on Gun laws considering the recent mass shootings?

Damadar661 karma

Ooh, a tough question. On the one hand, I would hate to be singled out by the NRA or any other group as being anti-gun. On the other hand, I could lose all support if I don't come out in favor of gun control.

Thanks! This is the kind of tough question I was wanting!

I think the time to talk about guns, and their affects on peoples lives is whenever someone wants to have the conversation. I think asking people to "wait" for the "appropriate time" is just a way to never have the conversation. If you're afraid to have a conversation, you shouldn't be working for the public.

That said, I own two pistols myself. I recognize the emotional plea for wanting to ban firearms; I don't think that's a good answer, and there are several studies that show the effect of bans on guns are not directly attributable to a drop in gun violence. Other policies and initiatives that went along with the 1994 AWB were more helpful.

Still, it's too easy for someone to decide they're going to kill a large number of people. Law enforcement agencies should have tools, (such as the Red Flag laws being discussed right now) to proactively intervene when there's a threat to others, or a possibility of self-harm. This should go through the courts, and there should absolutely be a pathway to regaining those weapons once the danger has passed - whatever the criteria for that may be.

Closing the gun show loophole is another good idea. I have an idea, I'll float it here. Tell me what you think:

In Missouri, if you're a private gun seller, selling at a gun show, you are only allowed to sell to Missouri Citizens. (That's my understanding; I could be wrong. Feel free to correct me and cite a statute!) If Gun Shows were responsible for issuing a permit-to-purchase, you'd have background checks for every firearm sold at a gun show. (Gun show dealers, to my understanding, who are Licensed Shops, still have to follow NICS rules for background checks, even at gun shows.) The gun shows would work with the local sheriff's department to run a MULES background check to ensure the person is safe to buy a firearm. If they pass, they get a permit; they show the permit (and ID) to the guy at the gun show, and they get to buy the gun.

That's an idea, anyway. I'd also be in favor of raising the age of purchase to 21, or examining, (I haven't fully dived into it) a revival of Missouri's permit to purchase program that was removed around 2007.

Thanks for your question!

Gov_Martin_OweMalley223 karma

issuing a permit-to-purchase

That's a different Idea I haven't heard before and certainly has some merit! It's refreshing to see someone not toe the party line and want to force bans on everyone. Maryland has a couple great Democrat candidates running for Governor right now but they all support the idea of bans and that just pushes people to vote for our Republican Governor once again(And in his defense, he's done a great job).

Damadar166 karma

I believe in finding solutions that bridge divides and can gain support from everyone. I don't like the idea of bans. I do like the idea of responsible, safe gun ownership.


wtcnbrwndo4u172 karma

Clarification. You can buy a gun from a gun show if you live out of state, however, you would have to pay for them to transfer it to a FFL in your state of residence.

Damadar123 karma

Huh; the guys I talked to made it sound like that was not at all possible. Maybe something the Gun Show told'em when setting up, or maybe just something they didn't want to go through.


LustLacker50 karma

I want every politician to support funding CDC research on gun violence. Surely studying the factors and outcomes can help lead to a decrease. Gun violence should be treated like drunk driving in the 70's and 80's. We weren't removing cars, we had a campaign and studies to decrease the impact and occurences, with ads and awareness and studies.

Damadar33 karma

If the Dickey amendment could be affected by the Missouri State House of Representatives, you better believe I'd be all aboard allowing the CDC to research gun violence.

kjfang29 karma

I feel like you have good gun control policies, but I'm curious about raising the age to 21? I'm currently under the age of 21, and as I'm soon moving away from my parents, I was considering purchasing a firearm for home safety. Is it fair, or is there any backing, as to why someone between the ages of 18 (the current age limit without parental consent) and 21 shouldn't be allowed to purchase a firearm?

Damadar50 karma

I'm more flexible on the 21 age-range. I would be more in favor of requiring proof that you can safely operate and store a weapon and ammunition.

I have my CCW; I believe in responsible, safe gun ownership. That's the real crux of my position.


kjfang25 karma

I definitely agree with proving you can safely operate and own a firearm. My plans for when I own one are to take the Hunter's Course and Gun Safety course to learn to keep it responsibly.

Damadar17 karma

Good to hear!

nmotsch78924 karma

The "gun show loophole" does not exist. It's just another way of saying background checks aren't needed for private sales between individuals. There are states that require background checks for sales between individuals but it's impossible to enforce. The only way it would be possible to enforce background checks on private sales would be to later implement registration, and this wouldn't stop criminals from doing illegal private sales.

As a side note, the strict wording of the law in some states that require a background check for private sales actually requires it not just for sales, but for all transfers of ownership or possession, even temporary ones. If I'm walking through the woods with my buddy and we come across an obstacle of some sort, the safe thing to do is for me to hand him my gun, then I go over the obstacle, he hands me both guns, then he climbs over. That way, you aren't holding a rifle while trying to climb over something. In some states, that safe procedure would be considered a transfer of possession and would be illegal. Hell, even something as simple as trying your buddy's gun out at the range or borrowing it for a weekend if your hunting rifle is broken would become illegal in some states. In very serious cases, if a person who owns a gun is going through personal difficulties and wants to give the gun to a friend or family member (fear of an abusive spouse using it, or they want to get rid of it because they are suicidal, for example), it adds an extra barrier and makes it much harder to take the gun off of someone else's hands. Now, there are very few police officers who would actually arrest someone for simply holding their buddy's gun, but the fact that some states technically make it illegal is a problem, and it can be tricky to word the law in such a way that it doesn't criminalize these acts.

Damadar19 karma

I answered this elsewhere, but you're right about it being about private person-to-person sales. However, if you're going to an event, setting up a stall, and laying out things you want to sell, you're pretty close to a business, and I think it'd be okay to have the gun show facilitate background checks before people buy those guns.

No law fixes every problem; expecting a law to fix all issues would be, in a word, silly.

Thanks for your input!

Birdjag11 karma

I was able to legally purchase a handgun at 18 from a private seller and purchase long guns from a dealer. I am 20 now, live in Missouri and got my CCW when I was 19. I carry my pistol everywhere except school. I didn't go through a background check for the handgun, I bought it from someone I never knew and who didn't know me. I believe private sales should be required to go through an FFL for a NICS background check just as buying a firearm from an FFL is.

As for the age, I don't think that moving it to 21 will make much of a difference or is a good idea. The government can strap a rifle to a 18 year old and send them into combat but they cannot purchase a firearm back in the homeland for their personal protection? I believe schools should have armed personnel. Why do we have armed guards at banks and jewelry stores but do not share reciprocity for the kids who will make up future generations to come? We protect literal rocks that are extracted from the ground and placed on people's bodies better than school children. Why disarm / make it difficult for the population to protect themselves? Criminals won't care about gun legislation they are criminals.

edit; grammar and clarification

Damadar20 karma

Some of that I agree with. I also have my CCW and believe people should be trained in the safe use and storage of weapons and ammunition.

I'm not sure I want armed guards at schools; I'd be more inclined to focus on non-weapon-related safety measures. A guy in Joplin invented a lock that makes it incredibly difficult for someone to get into the classroom, even if they have a gun. That's a good start. Air-locked vestibules at entry-points are also a good idea.

But I understand the armed guard argument, and it's not a terrible argument. Unlike arming teachers. That's a terrible idea.

makinglemonade9 karma

Permit to purchase is a great idea! Run with this as a demonstration of your ability to find meaningful and productive compromises! Good work!

Damadar18 karma

I floated it past a few friends first; they liked it. I'm hopeful that seeking compromise and listening to both sides of an issue, and trying to find common ground will be more prominent in Missouri Politics.


KJ6BWB3 karma

If Gun Shows were responsible for issuing a permit-to-purchase, you'd have background checks for every firearm sold at a gun show. (Gun show dealers, to my understanding, who are Licensed Shops, still have to follow NICS rules for background checks, even at gun shows.) The gun shows would work with the local sheriff's department to run a MULES background check to ensure the person is safe to buy a firearm. If they pass, they get a permit; they show the permit (and ID) to the guy at the gun show, and they get to buy the gun.

Who are these non-dealers selling guns at gun shows? If they're skirting by under the table and not signing up as a dealer, then wouldn't they continue to do such? I guess I'm asking, if the gun show dealers need to do a background check anyway then why does the show need to do an additional background check?

Damadar5 karma

Lots of non-dealers sell guns at gun shows as "Private collections". They're not skirting anything. They just don't need to do background checks because they are not FFL dealers. They're private citizens selling to private citizens. The permits would be a way to ensure that the private sellers are not selling to someone who is, for example, under indictment for a felony, has a restraining order against them, or is a felon.


Thebeckmane3 karma

Can confirm and Missouri resident and was able to just hand cash to someone at a gun show and get a gun with almost no questions asked. It seemed insane I could do this.

Damadar3 karma

I'd like to fix that, myself. It seems like a common sense approach, and it would support local sheriff departments. Seems win/win to me.

senatorskeletor2 karma

In the future, I’d suggest you start your answers with discussion of your principles (or, better still, a short answer to the question) as opposed to your concerns about how your answer will affect your political standing.

Damadar3 karma

That's fair feedback. Thanks!

yalogin2 karma

You are thinking like a politician when your first thought is, how do I position myself that is advantageous to me, instead of what you actually feel.

Damadar1 karma

I mean, I guess? But I don't know that explaining why this is a tough question that a lot of people try to avoid is doing that.

NinjaEdit: But thanks for your comment!

sideburnsy288 karma

What are your legislative priorities for Missouri? How do you feel about the alleged misconduct of Governor Grietens?

Damadar416 karma

What are your legislative priorities for Missouri?

Focusing on education, primarily. Modifying the foundation formula to be more generous to schools to provide updated equipment, as well as better salaries for teachers. I'd also like to see Missouri move to a ranked-choice voting setup, to allow people to accurately represent themselves without feeling like their vote is powerless.

How do you feel about the alleged misconduct of Governor Grietens?

I'd like to see the judicial process move forward on it, and keep the politics out of it. The House is currently doing an investigation; that's fine. I feel like trying to set a trial date for November 5th was stupid. If he broke the law in this manner, he should be subject to the appropriate punishments as set forth by Missouri law.

I don't know the guy, I don't know anyone involved. This is something worth investigating, absolutely. I don't know (or have an opinion) on whether or not he actually committed the crime, as I don't have enough information available.

CptObviousRemark72 karma

I'd also like to see Missouri move to a ranked-choice voting setup, to allow people to accurately represent themselves without feeling like their vote is powerless.

I'm a Missouri resident, and curious as to how you plan to introduce this to the state. Do you have a plan, or is this truly just a "Hey we should do this. Somebody do it." kind of thing as most people who present the idea on the internet bring it up as?

Damadar119 karma

So, I believe (I could be wrong) that Chapter 15 of Missouri's Statutes covers all of Missouri's election laws. If elected, making modifications to that through House Bills would be my first tactic. If that doesn't work, (or I'm not elected) a constitutional amendment could be put on the ballot with enough support which would require Missouri use Ranked Choice voting.


effervescenthoopla140 karma

Hi, James! I'm a St. Louis county resident interested in politics, especially in this blue-red-blue state.

What are your thoughts on merging St. Louis city and St. Louis county? (That's always a fun question to ask to start.)

Now, a hard one: Let's say the people of Missouri voted for A, but you very, very strongly believe B. The polls are close, and you hear a lot of good arguments for both sides, but the people ultimately decide A and you VERY strongly feel B. How do you vote?

Damadar310 karma

What are your thoughts on merging St. Louis city and St. Louis county? (That's always a fun question to ask to start.)

Not living directly in St. Louis or the STL County area, I don't know the nuances of the problems. I know it would make managing the city easier, as some of the laws would be relaxed. (Like officials having to live in STL City itself) but I also know that benefit would be offset by tax-related issues.

Let's say the people of Missouri voted for A, but you very, very strongly believe B. The polls are close, and you hear a lot of good arguments for both sides, but the people ultimately decide A and you VERY strongly feel B. How do you vote?

I love the tough questions. First, let me tell you right now: When I vote on something, you'll have every reason why I vote for something. It'll be on Facebook, it'll be on my site, and it'll be on Twitter. I won't shy away from detailing exactly why I vote for something.

Secondly, if the data and arguments weren't enough to sway my opinion, (and I like to try my hardest to keep an open mind on any issue, and argue it from every side. I'm a human, though, so bias exists.) then I would probably still vote B. Your situation seems to imply that the vote was close, so I feel my obligation as a leader in the community would have necessitate that I lead with my values, and explain it as such to the voters. We are a republic; we vote leaders to make decisions on our behalf because we trust their approach. I would hope my constituents would feel that they could trust me, and listen to my explanation.

To put it simply, I'd vote B, and explain why.

That might get me voted out of office - but that's okay. We should elect people that represent our ideals, and if I don't represent them, then I'm not the man for the job.

Thanks for your question!

johncessna92 karma

Which of us do you think has the market on Reddit drunk Christmas cards?

Damadar51 karma

Different kinds of cards, but I'd say you've got the older claim, so you!

Merry Christmas! Hah!

Jehovacoin83 karma

Hey James, I'm curious about the challenges you have faced so far, and the steps required to run for office. Specifically, what steps have you taken to drum up support and build your constituency, and what financial hurdles have you had to overcome up to this point?

Damadar130 karma

First, thanks for the question! I really appreciate it. I'll try to give you as complete an answer as I can!

I'm curious about the challenges you have faced so far, and the steps required to run for office.

Well, first and foremost, there's a large amount of paperwork that ends up going into it. I chose to file as a Democrat, although I lean more independent than I do to any given party. The first thing I needed to do was head over to the Missouri Ethic's Commission and create a candidate committee. That required filling out a form, getting a treasurer, and creating a bank account for the campaign. (That was a whole other problem; the bank wanted proof I was running from the State, and the State wouldn't give proof until I had a bank account. Commerce Bank was really good about working with me on getting it all set up!)

Then, once I did that, I had to file for office at the state capitol. That was a kinda neat process: First, I filed some forms, (an affidavit saying I didn't owe back taxes, and a receipt from the party stating I'd paid my filing fee of $50.) Once that was done, I went up to the 3rd floor of the Secretary of State's building and created an envelope for my documents. I was lead down a long hallway, met the Secretary of State briefly, and drew a number from a Fishbowl.

That number determined ballot placement; every day after the 27th, it's first come, first serve; but on opening day, placement is random, determined by a random number. I got a fairly low number. (In the 300's) and moved on to the next area. It was a long hallway with offices off it. I went into one of these offices, and an assistant filled out some forms in front of me. I verified they were correct, and signed some forms. That officially put me on the ballot!

I then walked around a corner, got my documents officially stamped and filed, received my copies, and left! It was super awesome, everyone was really friendly and helpful.

I still have a financial disclosure form to fill out; that will be done soon!

Specifically, what steps have you taken to drum up support and build your constituency

So far, I've been going to local meetings and introducing myself, letting people know what I believe in, and asking them to reach out with any comments or concerns they might have. I have some business cards printed up that I give out, which have all of the campaign's contact info on it, too. I've given those out door-to-door in my neighborhood.

As soon as I have more fundraising completed, I'll be purchasing access to a likely-voter network application, (costs about $500 for my area) which will help me focus my attention on getting voters turned out for the election.

and what financial hurdles have you had to overcome up to this point?

Well, financially, I've loaned $200 to my campaign, spent $50 of personal money on filing, and did $575 worth of free-work that I have to mark off as an in-kind contribution. Raising money can be a bit tricky, until you start moving. There's a quote used by Emily's list that is very true: Early money is like yeast!

That said, I'm working with some local printers to try to cut the costs down so I can get some yard signs up. Fundraising is literally the hardest part of running for office; I hate asking people for money. I wish I were wealthy enough to fully self-fund.

It's worth noting that I don't have any contributions from the Democratic party, and do not anticipate getting any. They offer some tools, (training, mostly, and the ability to purchase access to their likely voter network) but there's no financial support from them. That gives me an incredible amount of flexibility for creating my platform, too.

Hope that answers your questions!

Jehovacoin44 karma

Thanks for the timely response, James. I wish you the best of luck in your campaign. It's good to see more people trying to speak up and be heard.

Damadar29 karma

Sure thing; thanks for the questions!

FEwood-6 karma

There is no “gun show loophole”. https://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/facts-about-gun-shows. No vote for you!

Damadar8 karma

Well, the "loophole" is in dealing with private selling of guns that happen often at gunshows, with people who sell professionally labeling their sales as "private collections". I spoke with a few such people at the gun show in Washington, MO last week.

They don't claim to operate a business, but at least one person had that as their main source of income.

I used the term loosely in the colloquial usage, not in a legal reference. Much like there are laws on private sellers at gun shows not allowing them to sell to non-Missouri residents. (Again, I could be wrong about that; I was going off the comments of one of the attendants of the gun shows; feel free to show statutes that refute!)

Thanks, though. :) I hope you vote for someone!

Guardofthedragon66 karma

Hello, thank you for doing this AMA! Could you tell me a little more about your stance on Healthcare? I had a look at your website but was a little confused on your stance.

I'm an American and Canadian citizen living in Canada, so healthcare is rather important to me. Cheers!

Damadar103 karma

So, there are a lot of memes going around about healthcare. I've got friends all over the world, and they both extol the virtues of our healthcare system, and berate the problems. It's interesting to hear praise and condemnation in the same breath!

I look at it this way: Societies are generally judged on a few things, but one of the most important, to me, is how they treat their sick and feeble. In the wealthiest country in the world, with some of the brightest minds on the planet, and with the most entrepreneurial spirit, how is this not something we've solved already?

I want to see (and promote) more access for healthcare. The US seems to be moving towards a single payer system with insurance taking a "more cosmetic" method for dealing with things.

But there's no "magic key" to fix healthcare issues. We have bad eating habits in the country. We have people working too many hours, in dangerous situations. We have poor people avoiding doctors until a situation is dire, and we have people who just don't understand what their options and choices are.

I don't have a bright enough mind to fix it myself, but I'd like to see us put more focus on patients, and less on profits. Obamacare has some benefits, but insurance isn't healthcare - and requiring it for access is just another barrier and red tape that we don't need.

Tuesdaythe5th26 karma

Are you hesitant to support Medicare for All?

Damadar74 karma

It's a federal issue, but no. I wouldn't be hesitant to support it. I'd say we'd need to look at the funding structure of it to ensure we can afford it, but the idea that it would bankrupt our country is kinda silly. Lots of countries offer a similar system and aren't collapsing into anarchy with riots in the streets.

KCSwimmingly48 karma

What’s your actual slogan?

And what’s your drunk slogan?

I hope if elected, Trump doesn’t make your job Missourible.

Damadar27 karma

Your pun is amusing. I give you one upvote.

My actual slogan: Ready to work for you.

Because I am. This job is important, and you have to be willing to work for people. Absentee politicians harm our society; we need engaged leaders.

Drunk slogan? Hrm. I dunno. I don't think I have one. I get a bit sarcastic when drunk, though. So maybe just that: #SarcasmFontsAreTheFuture

??? I dunno though. :p

joshman021911 karma

You may want to think of a slogan that hasn't been used thousands of times. Just a thought.

Damadar18 karma

I'm open to suggestions. This is the one that best reflected how I feel.

Who else used this one? I'm always curious to learn!

juksayer14 karma

Missouri? How about Histouri

Cave?! We've got plenty, but I won't!

In the middle of states, but on top of things!

Standing for what You believe!

It's up to US!

Give Me Another Beer!

Damadar8 karma

You're cheeky. :)

FatMan83238 karma

How do you feel about marijuana legalization and dropping charges against those currently in prison for small possession charges?

Damadar77 karma

I signed the petition to get it on the ballot this year; I think voters should have a say on it in this state. I've never done any form of recreational drug, and I personally don't like being around people who are high. But the evidence suggests that it is not a gateway drug, and it is no more dangerous to a person's body or activities than alcohol. So, just like I don't go to bars, I won't go to places where people smoke pot.

Releasing and dismissing charges of those in jail for marijuana possession makes sense to me. I know the local police chief doesn't agree with me, but he sees things through a different lens than I do, and I completely respect his view point. It is a nuanced, and well thought out position from his perspective. I just don't agree with his interpretation of the overall picture.

Thanks. :)

Hodl2Moon4 karma

I wish that was the mentality of politicians when I used to live in the show me state.

Damadar6 karma

Well, we can hope for some changes. :)

MpegEVIL31 karma

What are your qualifications for entering politics? What education and experience makes you an informed and effective fit for the job?

Damadar4 karma

Insofar as qualifications go, I meet all of Missouri's minimum qualifications for the job.

As for why voters might want to vote for me? I'm a straight shooter when it comes to answering questions. I'm working on a BS degree in Software Dev; I've been a data analyst and software dev for the past 10 years without the degree. I've done data analysis for Hewlett Packard, and I have a lot of ideas that I feel people will resonate with.

If you're looking for a law degree, I think you'll find a number of politicians don't have one. If you're looking for a degree of any kind, I'd point out that I've had a successful career without one. If you're looking for me to be similar to the other people who've run for office before, I'd hope that I fail that particular test.

I don't want to be another "Politician" that's just like every other one, so I hope that, using that measuring stick, I won't measure up.


Fergus_CL30 karma

What are the biggest issues facing Missouri's 109th district as you see them? Can you name a specific way you aim to address one of these issues?

Damadar54 karma

The biggest issues would be, in no particular order:

  • Our voting system
  • Infrastructure
  • Local Economy

I'll do you one better, and give you three ways to address these:

1.) Improving highway 47, (which cuts straight through Union) It should be a 4 lane highway, not a 2 way highway. At the very least, it should have wide shoulders for accidents. 2.) Working with the county commissioners to better plan projects. One of our roads, (Denmark) was completely shut down for some of our residents because the bridge was closed before improvements to the other half of the road were completed; residents were stuck, for varying amounts of time, without a means of egress. 3.) Switching to ranked choice voting. Not everyone agrees, but I feel it provides a more accurate representation of what people want. 4.) Starting an incubator. Our local community college has expressed interest in it; they just need some support. That means local investors and infrastructure improvements. The state can help with part of that, and I feel like good negotiating with investors, (St. Louis is nearby, with a lot of investors) could help with that.

Thanks for your question!

Fergus_CL21 karma

Thanks for your thorough reply. I wish we had someone with as much concern for the job in my district. What is ranked choice voting and why do you feel it better reflects the people's will? Bonus Q: what are your thoughts on those three rather provocative billboards outside Ebbing, MO?

Damadar24 karma

Who's running in your district? Maybe you should run. Think on it.

Ranked choice voting allows you to number your candidates from most liked to least liked. Here's a video.

As for the billboards, I have to be completely honest: I know nothing about it. I'm sorry. :(

justathoughtfromme21 karma

The billboards are a reference to this movie. There is no actual Ebbing, MO.

Damadar16 karma

See? I knew nothing about it. :p

jeffkeyz29 karma

I love your Carpool Karaoke and you're great on Ballers. How's life?

Damadar38 karma

My last name is going to be the bane of my campaign, apparently.

But life's okay. Getting married next year, so that's cool. Running for office is neat. Thanks!

SROTDExplorer28 karma

Hey there! If you had to recommend two books (one fiction, one nonfiction) that you either really enjoyed, or feel had a major impact on you or your life, what would they be?

Damadar43 karma

Two books?! That's a hard sell. Right now, non-fiction? Phew, I'm reading "Founding Rivals" by Chris DeRose, and it's a pretty great book.

Insofar as fiction goes, probably cheese out with Monster Blood by RL Stine. Or maybe The Demon Awakens by RA Salvatore. Both of those books were big for me, for different reasons. (Monster Blood gave me viciously cool nightmares for a while; Salvatore's book got me into reading Fantasy novels.)


tuzlyfe26 karma

What are some little things you'd like to see done that would benefit America's farmers?

Damadar81 karma

I mean, a simple one would be this: Fix Missouri Roads. It's dangerous to haul cattle on roads full of potholes and that are falling apart.

Thanks for your question!

1990sBBSSysOp25 karma

Yo. James. I'm in MO. What do you think of this porn bill trying to get passed in the MO legislature? Also, does Greitens have to go?

Damadar6 karma

Haven't read any porn bills, so I don't have a stance on it. I vaguely remember hearing something about one, but no details. Sorry.

I think the judicial process should figure out what did or did not happen, and punish or acquit as appropriate. I think the House committee should do it's job without press interference, and work quickly to move past this in as honest and straightforward a way as possible.

Sedentary24 karma

Can you tell Frito Lay to stop putting pretzels into Munchies bags?

Damadar40 karma

Sure, but it won't work. I'll tweet about it for you.

Here you go.

mredofcourse24 karma

Thanks, and...

I noticed that you don’t mention in your intro that you’re a Democrat. On your campaign page you talk about how this is your campaign and not a campaign for the Democratic Party.

Can you list some of the issues you’re not aligned with on the Democratic Platform?

Damadar38 karma

Gun reform is probably the biggest one. I don't want to call for a ban on the AR-15 or associated weapons, I don't like the idea of talking about an "assault" weapon's ban because it's too easy to get lost in the muck around the conversation.

I probably wouldn't vote for a ban unless there was overwhelming evidence that it would be beneficial, too. That's one of the primary ways, I guess.

Rhysma23 karma

As one of your former professors, I'm curious - how are you going to support education in Missouri? Specifically the funding of the A+ program and the new "Core 42" mandate that allows students to graduate with a Bachelor's degree and never take a basic computing course.

Damadar23 karma

Hi! Thanks for the question!

First, I think computer education should start in grade school. And I want to see teachers make higher salaries. I was speaking with the president of East Central Community College in Union the other day. His name is Dr. Bauer.

(I really wanted to call him Jack. Okay. Bad joke. Moving on.)

He was talking about how higher education funding has been slipping. A few years ago, it made up 33% of their budget. It now makes up something like 22%. (Rough numbers; don't quote me on those.) He also said that A+ is not being fully funded. I'd like to reverse that.

I'll be honest - I need to read more about Core42. I know my fiancee has mentioned the program (not by name, but close) and has been enthused by it, but I need to know more about it before I can talk about its benefits. I will say, if you don't know how to use basic productivity software or work your way around a computer before you graduate middle school, I think we're failing our students.


Fangirlhasnoreality22 karma

Hi James! I live in Texas so I doubt that most of your policies will affect me personally, but I’m a young person interested in politics. I follow the news and keep my eyes and ears open. Especially via Twitter and Reddit, but I’m too young to really do much about the things I hear about (too young to vote, too awkward to call state reps.)what do you suggest I do to help make my voice heard?

Damadar25 karma

Tweet, E-Mail, engage in conversation on Reddit and in person with your friends. Seek out opinions that are different than your own, too. That's important.

I really like this chart. If you recognize where your own bias lies, then you can use this chart to help find opinions that are different than your own, and stay informed on them.

Mostly, keep an open mind. And practice talking to your local state congressional reps. Talk with your city reps, too. Mayors, City Admins, Ward leaders, this is where the real governing starts.

Thanks for your question, and stay engaged! Make your voice heard!

go200120 karma

Do you see your drunk Christmas cards being used against you in a campaign smear?

Damadar59 karma

Maybe, but I mean, here's the deal with it.

I don't drink much at all. Once a year, I invite some friends over, and I do some drinking, and write some free cards for people around the world. I get messages like, "My friend's wife just died; he could use some cheering up" or "I have nothing to look forward to this year; this will really help out" and "You're a terrible person for doing this, let's be friends."

So I don't see it as a negative. I drink responsibly, not to excess, and I want to help other people have a great holiday with something to look forward to. If people want to judge me negatively for that, I don't think I would ever be able to change their minds. :)

Thanks for your question!

Fenour20 karma

I don't think that this has been asked but what are your views on abortion. Also what do you think about the legalization of weed? Thanks for taking your time to respond in advanced

Damadar73 karma

I don't think that this has been asked but what are your views on abortion.

Another toughie. You guys are great and on fire with these today. Thanks for your question.

Gonna give you the TL;DR answer first; I hope you read the whole thing, though.

tl;dr: Abortion should be legal, and it should be rare.

The long answer: I'm not a fan of the idea of abortion. Not from a religious or ideological perspective, but from a human emotion perspective. Nobody likes having an abortion; anyone who tries to tell you otherwise is using the experience as a shield to keep themselves from hurting. I've talked to people who have had abortions; it is not a pleasant experience, and it is a tough, hard, trying time in their lives.

And the decision is never made with any flippancy. (Which is the most common way I have seen it portrayed.) When an abortion happens, it sucks. It's one of the worst experiences a person can probably go through, and a lot of people go through it alone. Ostracized by family, and friends, neighbors and co-workers.

Better sex education, better access to contraceptives, and focusing more on getting men to be more responsible about their sexual health and practices is the key to reducing abortions. Not making them illegal. They were illegal once upon a time. They still happened, and they caused a lot more heartbreak then.

RE Weed: I signed the petition, I wouldn't vote to criminalize it; I'd be in favor of decriminalizing it and releasing those who are incarcerated solely on a possession charge.


Brynden_Rivers_Esq19 karma

Hi James; I'm not from Missouri but it's very exciting to see someone with a sense of humor running for office. One of the questions I would have for you is this: What do you think your state does well? What do you think the state does poorly?

Damadar37 karma

Thanks for your question! What does my state do well? Farm. Agriculture is a huge part of our economy, to the tune of $88 billion. Our small farmers are fantastic people, and they are great stewards of the land.

What could we do better? A lot of things. I think communicating might be a good goal. I've got family that shuts down when they hear the name "Obama", and other family members that shut down when they hear the name "Trump". I think if we could open our hearts and listen more, and empathize better, our state would do better.

strong_grey_hero18 karma

How did you come up with the idea for "Carpool Karaoke"?

Damadar20 karma

That would have been a cool idea to have had. :( Alas, I cannot take credit for it!

I could totally do some, though. (Nobody would vote for me if they heard me sing, though.)

conservative-logic13 karma

He's thinking of James Corden. I think it was sarcastic. Knowing reddit...definitely sarcastic.

Damadar8 karma

Yeah, it's a common theme through the thread. ;) I was just trying to make fun of my singing skills.


haydukelives99915 karma

Hello Mr Cordrey, What are your thoughts on the state of LGBT rights in Missouri? Do you think we should have an LGBT protections bill to stop discrimination against LGBT people? I see that one of your important issues is edcuatjon reform. As someone who grew up LGBT in the Missouri school system I found it troubling at best. What do you think could be done to help our most vulnerable students? As you can probably tell this is an important issue for me.
Thank you for your time.

Damadar66 karma

Hey, thanks for your question!

I think that people look for reasons to ostracize others without empathizing with them. I'm a CIS white guy from middle-America. My whole life has been set on "easy" mode. But when I was somewhere between 8 and 11, my aunt came out to me as gay, and posed the following question:

"Do you love me any less?"

As a kid, my thought was, "That's dumb. You're just different, who cares?" But I found out that a lot of people care, and care a lot. I feel like we could be doing a lot more to protect and nurture students so they feel safe in the classroom, and in their own bodies. It doesn't matter to me how you self-identify; I care that you feel safe and comfortable in your work place, in your education system, and in your community.

In my mind, schools are places where people come together; segregating them out for any criteria whatsoever feels wrong.

Thanks for your question; I hope my answer helped.

Pritam199715 karma

How do you like your steak??

Damadar40 karma

Medium rare, grilled over an open fire.

SpenceOrSpencer10 karma

Heya James! I know I'm late here, but I went to school with you! It's Spencer, we played D&D at Jordan's and Patrick's houses in high school. I didn't expect to come home from work today and see your name on the main feed of Reddit!

Here's my question: how much are you going to pay me to hide all your dirty secrets? All of your DMing techniques?

Joking aside, it's great to see you involved in politics. I was a district delegate for Bernie myself.

Damadar4 karma

Hey Spencer; great to hear from you! I was talking about your rather unique approach to High School and life after it to some people the other day! Are you still in MO?

Feel free to reach out on Facebook or in PM's so we can catch up! (And please keep my terrible DM secrets to yourself. :P)

youngmrs9 karma

Hi James.

Long story short-ish: I met James when I was just in high school playing an online game. I had a horribly tough time throughout those years and even through college. Over each summer away from college I was homeless (I’m not sure he knew that), later after moving to California I had been in a car accident, I had been assaulted by my older brother, and I had then been homeless again in NYC for a short time before before I finally found a job and returned to school full-time, where I finally graduated with my associate’s degree.

Eight years later and I am in a much better place and life is not so much a huge struggle anymore. But what is important is that throughout those years, James always put forward the effort to stay in touch with me. And almost every birthday and holiday, he’d send me something, if even just a nice card with a message that cheered me up and made me feel valued and worthwhile, even during times when I felt the exact opposite of that. When I was trying to make it through my graphic design program at uni one year he even sent me my first pack of Prismacolour markers - supplies I couldn’t afford but really needed at the time. He knew my passion for art and he always tried to help me harbour it.

I was ashamed all those years for it, but I could never afford to send much in return besides cards. And even then I was flippant and flighty and unreliable in terms of being a good friend. But it didn’t really matter to James. He always sent one for Christmas or something from Amazon for my birthday, wherever in the world I happened to be.

Since this here seems as good a platform as any, I just wanted to take the opportunity to tell the world how great of a guy, and an influence on my life, James has been to me - and how outstanding of a person he is in general - to everybody really. I am where I am today, in some small part, because of James.

It’s really good to see you here. And I’m not sure why we fell out of touch, but that is OK. I hope you achieve your goal because you deserve it. You deserve everything you’ve given out to the world to come back to you tenfold.

Oh and I guess I have to ask you a question to post, sorry if awkward turtles since I’m no longer as clued in on U.S. politics:

Do you accept drunk birthday cards? :)

Damadar3 karma

Well now, I didn't expect to see you pop up. I would gladly accept one; send me a PM! And omg thank you for the kind words. <3

joshman02198 karma

How many genders are there?

Damadar35 karma

My view on it is this, and you can take it or leave it however you want: I don't care. I honestly, just really couldn't care. If you want to be called "her" even though my societal training tells me to call you "bro", well. Her it is. If you want to be called It, well, that's fine too. If you come up with your own pronoun, I'll do my best to treat you with respect and reference you the way you want to be referenced.

One of the most innate qualities we have as people is self determination of our lives and to have our own agency. It costs me nothing, absolutely nothing, to treat someone with respect, or to call someone a Xhintingopod if that's how they identify their gender. As a cost/benefit analysis goes, that's a no-brainer for me.


RandomRoberto8 karma

What would you propose to address the opioids crisis?

Damadar15 karma

A number of things, but probably one of the first would be fully implementing a good Drug Monitoring Program; Greitens took a good first step, but it could be strengthened.

Hospitals already have the tools necessary to watch for drug abuse issues within their own networks; giving them the ability to share that information easily (in a controlled way; similar to how other states have done it) would help immensely.

In Franklin County, it starts with prescription drugs, then moves to Heroin, Meth, and Cocaine. I spent an hour talking with Police Chief Brune about what our issues were, and not having a good rehabilitation policy is part of the problem. A good focus on that would be beneficial.

Thanks for your question!

dixonnuts8 karma

How’s it going, James? Just life in general. I live in California, but I wish you good luck in your campaign.

Damadar6 karma

Oh, pretty good for the most part. I've got a lot on my plate, but I think that's good.

Thanks for asking; I appreciate it!

rickhunter178 karma

What are your view on immigration? Do you support DACA? Do you support the wall? Do you support the Muslim ban?

Damadar23 karma

You'll be hard-pressed to find me in favor of pretty much any ban unless there is a high-bar of evidence suggesting it would be beneficial in the extreme.

That said, no, I absolutely do not support a Muslim ban. I support a path to citizenship for DACA recipients; the sooner the better. If they've been here for 20 years, and they've been good citizens, that's enough for me.

Walls invite ladders and tunnels and lots of time spent washing off graffiti. There are better uses for $24 billion than a wall. Let's go to Mars, or back to the Moon, or some other cool, fun, crazy project that will bring people together.

Alsadius7 karma

Farmers should find it easier to sell the product of their toil in marketplaces, without fear of large corporate farms undercutting them and driving them out of business.

In your mind, are large corporate farms undercutting them through unfair advantages of some sort, or is it simply economies of scale? And if it's happening due to natural advantages of large operations, how do you intend to change that?

Damadar8 karma

Like most things, it's a bit of both. Giving small farms access to larger markets, (through better roads and internet) we can help offset some of the large vs small situations.

There's a discussion in Missouri right now about large out-of-country owned businesses that are given tax-breaks and loans by their country-of-origin to go to other countries and supplant local businesses; there should be good ways to track that, and impose fines/restrictions on access to our markets. In the long run, allowing that much "free market" access (when Governments get involved, specifically) you'll drain local markets of all the cash, and then you're in a dangerous place.

It's a very difficult scale to balance, and requires a lot of input, ideas, and solutions from every side of the problem.


iLikeEggs550007 karma

What's your drink of choice?

Damadar13 karma

What's your drink of choice?

Generally speaking, I like caffeine free diet coke with some lemon or black-cherry flavoring added. :)

iLikeEggs550007 karma

Spiked? I meant adult beverage but aight.

Damadar6 karma

Nah, I don't really drink that often!

Predictive-Text7 karma

Have you ever been to Bobby's bar? I went there once and was very pleased with the cost effective beer. 1$ bottles!!!! That's like 6.50$ here in Canada. Keep up the great work in Missouri and keep the golden liquid flow. Also treat Nortek good because they bring you guys lots of money :)

Damadar21 karma

I have not been to Bobby's Bar, but I now am imagining Bobby Hill owning a bar, and that thought frightens me.

Because that boy ain't right.


svnfvsvn7 karma

Are you homosexual?

Damadar10 karma

No, but I really can't imagine why it would matter.

ragnarokrobo6 karma

What is your position on gun control and the second amendment?

Damadar14 karma

Thanks for your question. I answered something similar here. If that's not enough information, let me know. :) Thanks!

Dank626 karma

Question here... Where the Fuck is my Christmas card?! Because I never got my secret Santa Gift!

Damadar8 karma

Did you sign up for one? :( I sent a ton out this year; I can look through the database later, if you like.

I'm really sorry. :/

Dank623 karma

I'm just being an asshole! Im pretty sure you were not my secret Santa! Dont worry, just had to make a comment! But thanks for caring! :)

Damadar3 karma

Oh. Well, cheers then. :P

septag0n5 karma

As a Missouri resident, I'm concerned about the Zhentarim's growing influence over government officials. The Harpers get some floor time, but when a member of the Emerald Enclave speaks up, they aren't given the same amount of consideration.

How would you bring a balance to a state where the densely populated cities lean left and are located at the extreme East and West borders with so many conservative leaning counties in between?

Damadar7 karma

I literally laughed out loud at this.

I'd call on Elminster to force the representatives of all factions to the table and have a good long conversation.

Thanks! :)

roastbeeftacohat5 karma

stance on electoral reform?

Damadar16 karma

I'd like to see Missouri switch to "Ranked choice voting", which, in my mind, would form a more representative government of the population.


schmalz_der_fliegen5 karma

California here. What is your stance on gerrymandering? Are you for it, against it, and what would you do to push your position forward?

Damadar7 karma

Good question! There are some good reasons for some of the ways some districts are drawn; unfortunately, most districts are drawn for partisan advantage.

There was a study done, (don't have a link handy; it was shown to me by someone I work with; he had a printed copy) that showed redistricting done by a computer would have only shifted one federal seat, so that makes it seem like a trivial issue.

I'm for logical drawing of legislative boundaries with good justifications that don't rely on party. I think it should be non-partisan, and focused on ensuring that citizens are properly represented.


lomhow12345 karma

What do you hope to accomplish as a state representative? Are there any strong stances or claims you'd want to make on behalf of the state?

Damadar8 karma

Oh, a few basic things. Some infrastructure upgrades badly needed in my district would be a start. I'd like to fix voting in Missouri, but that's a pretty lofty goal. Maybe the loftiest.


favoritetoothpaste5 karma

Excited to make my first post on reddit. Anyways, what is your favorite kind of toothpaste? What kind do you have at home right now?

Damadar3 karma

I'm enjoying Crest sensitive teeth tooth paste; it's pretty great. It's what I use! Thanks for caring about my teeth!

Sbaker7774 karma

Mr. Cordrey,

As someone with farming experience, how do you feel about the massive CAFOs being built across the state literally adjacent to other people’s private properties? (Callaway Farrowing, Tipton East, Valley Oaks Steak). Would you support increased DNR regulations about these?

Damadar4 karma

Being a farmer/raising livestock/growing crops/however you want to slice it and dice it should be about two things: Growing/producing good product, and being a steward of the land. CAFO's do neither of those things well in any sense of the word, and they go a step further by hurting local economies by moving money out of state, generally. (Not in every case, of course, but Callaway Farrowing, for example, was registered by a guy from Iowa as a local LLC to run these farms.)

So, we need to look at them carefully and make sure that they aren't abusing our laws to make it harder for local farmers to farm. That could include reducing tax-loopholes for these kind of agencies, or increased regulation.

Miseryy4 karma

What is your stance on tax cuts for the rich?

Damadar10 karma

It's a big question; I don't begrudge anyone their success, and I don't mind paying high taxes myself even though I'm not "rich". (My fiancee and I fall within the "middle class" range). I feel like tax relief is best applied from the bottom up, as those at the top of the income range do not spend nearly as much money locally. But it's not a one-size-fit-all answer; so few answers in life are.


yardrunt4 karma

So you're for more government involvement in student loans and price control in the form of farm subsidies?

Damadar29 karma

So you're for more government involvement in student loans and price control in the form of farm subsidies?

Mm, no. For Missouri, I'd like to see more funding into a Tech-program education route for students interested in pursuing that, and a better funding setup for the A+ program. I believe, (could be wrong; it happens) that it is not a fully funded program as of right now, and it helps facilitate children who are disadvantaged in pursuing careers that might otherwise be out of their reach.

As for subsidies, no. Large farming corporations like them, but farmers like my grandfather don't get them. Instead, I'd rather see access to markets become easier. This involves making transportation of product cheaper (which happens with infrastructure investments) and improving rural internet access.


Theedon4 karma

Window open or closed when it is raining?

Damadar4 karma

Depends on a few things. If it's a light rain with no wind and the day is cool but not cold? Open is great. I love the smell of rain. If it's going to make the house hot and muggy, or if the wind is blowing hard, or if it's raining really hard, closed.

But TV off and curtains open so I can see the lightning. :)

x0_Kiss0fDeath4 karma

What was the catalyst that made you want to run for office? Which issue are you more excited to get working on first, if elected? :)

Damadar4 karma

I've been interested in local government for quite a while, and the fact that this is an open seat makes it competitive. However, I was not planning to run; a woman named Patricia Schuba was planning to run, and I was going to offer her my support. She had to back out, though, so I decided it was time to put my money where my mouth was, so to speak.

Ranked choice voting is probably the first bill I'd work on, but education reform is where the bulk of my attention is going to be.


supratachophobia4 karma

Anything you can do to help enable direct-to-consumer auto sales?

Having dealt with dealerships in the past, they add nothing of value to the buying experience. And as a consumer, I can't tell you how great it was not having to mess with a dealership when purchasing a Tesla. I felt the same way again when I bought another one.

Damadar3 karma

You know, I'm not sure where Missouri's laws are on this one, so... maybe there is something that could be done in MO to facilitate it.

That's something to look into. Thanks.

The-Real-Illuminati3 karma

Do you think that violet video games cause violence among kids and teens?

Damadar9 karma

No. There are some interesting studies about losing games and violent games and the way we trash-talk and interact with others afterward, but there is no long-term evidence from any study that such things lead to violent behavior.

Well. Other than throwing the controller.

Raphael101003 karma

You mentioned doing something about the farmers being ‘undercut’, but what if I , as a consumer and private citizen (or more importantly someone who couldn’t afford to pay more for groceries) wanted to go for a cheaper product? Would you essentially try to limit choice on what people eat or are you talking about cutting agricultural subsidies?

Damadar3 karma

I don't want to limit anything. I want to keep large organizations from pulling money out of our state. CAFO's are an example of this; they come in, take advantage of Missouri markets, and bleed our economy dry while only contributing a small portion of it. There has to be a balance, because like you said: You need to eat, and you need to be able to afford to eat.

That's why I want to focus on education and the local economy in my district, and bring in new jobs that will help pump money into our local economy. Cutting subsidies harms your ability to buy low-cost food, but it might also make it less cost-effective for a large farm to pull money out of our economy.

These are big problems where small tweaks can make big changes. Thanks for being engaged and asking a great question. :)

cheezeitsnackmix3 karma

Hi! I'm a fellow Missourian here. Do you plan on doing anything about the roads if you're elected? For example the ones where I'm at have already had several fatal accidents this year, and nothing's being done about it.

Damadar5 karma

Through our area there's a road, highway 47, which is a big pain point. I would definitely like to see it expanded, and to fix some of the issues we've got with our infrastructure projects. We need good roads to improve education access, (there's an open-enrollment bill for an area nearby, one of the congressional reps for that bill cites road safety as a concern. Instead of fixing the problem, he'd rather ignore it.) and improve our economy.


Ndeek3 karma

Hello James! I am a native of Missouri, I was just wondering how you feel about our states Capital and our Governor being indicted?

Damadar5 karma

Hi! I liked Jefferson city; the Capitol Building is gorgeous, and the city is pretty nice too. I had a great pork chop at a soul food kitchen; it was amazing. Good corn bread, too.

As for the indictment, let the judicial process do what it does. I don't have enough information to have an opinion on it; but I'd like to keep the politics out of the court room as much as possible. Let the judge and prosecutors and jury do their thing, let the House do its investigation (as is appropriate) and let's all take a collective breath and let them do their work.

That's not a popular opinion in the Democratic party, either.

But thanks for your question!

red_sky333 karma

Hey! I'm actually a KC native, and I'm going to school in Rolla for computer science! In fact, I recently had an interview with KnowledgeLake about a week ago, so now I get to turn it around! Out of curiosity, where are you going to school?

Damadar7 karma

WGU - it meets my flexibility needs, what with running for office and working full time. Plus my bowling league. That's important.

Kielo13 karma

You can’t say I’m not running against Republicans, and “I’m running for something.” Unless your voters are 9 year olds. Wait, what State was it? Gotta pick a side, man.

Damadar9 karma

You know, this "sides" thing bothers me. It really does. It's like, "If you think this, you cannot work with someone who doesn't think like you." and you can't compromise, ever. I have my own thoughts; I'm my own man. Some people aren't going to agree with me. Not everyone is going to vote for me.

But that doesn't mean I need to go out and say, "Such and such person thinks this and that's bad!" or, "You should vote for me because I'm not LIKE THEM!"

We can have a difference of opinion. We can run on ideas, and thoughts, and what we feel would benefit the community. We can explain our position, and why we think the way we think without running "against" someone.

Just because I think an idea is bad doesn't mean I think the person proposing it is bad.

That's just my view, though; people are free to disagree. :) Thanks!

lurklurklurky3 karma

I was born and raised in Missouri, and I’m excited to see a candidate who is passionate about education! I went to school at Mizzou, and graduated with thousands of dollars of student loan debt despite many scholarships I acquired and the job I had on top of my schoolwork and extracurricular activities.

How do you plan on making a college education legitimately affordable for the average student? Even better, would you consider relief for students who have already graduated with significant debt, such as reducing or eliminating loan interest rates, allowing students to pay for student loans pretax (like you can for FSAs, commuter benefits, etc), or increasing tax benefits for those paying towards their loans? This is impacting my future, delaying my goals for marriage, savings, and buying a house, and any help would be beneficial towards reaching those goals faster.

Damadar3 karma

Student loan debt is crippling. Finding ways to pay for it are important; I think the Federal government is going backwards when it comes to education financing. (But that's not a surprise given who currently runs the department of Education.)

A good start is the Core42 option; we're helping kids get college credits in high school right now to help supplement what they need when they get into a college environment. Fully funding the A+ program would help. Improving work-study programs in colleges would also help, and finding ways to reduce tuition costs would be beneficial. There are some ideas for how to do that, (including rolling certain types of colleges into the K-12 model, which I'm not fond of.) but I'm not sure which is the best model. I'm open to suggestions, and talking about it. But I don't have a concrete or well thought out solution for everything.

k_fab2 karma

Hey James, do you have a destination when you do Carpool Karaoke?

Ohhhh waiiit......

Damadar4 karma

This joke will never get old, I guess. :p

BroKnight2 karma

Are you a democrat or a liberal? If you don't understand you can ask me.

Damadar3 karma

I'm fairly liberal when it comes to the social agenda, and when it comes to things like healthcare and education. I'm a bit more conservative when it comes to other programs, but if they work, I'm all for them. I'm not eager to sign up on anyone's bandwagon of labels, though. Sorry.

ONLY-NFL2 karma

Pineapple. Does it belong on pizza or not???

Damadar7 karma

The toughest question of all. I'll lose a lot of voters over this, but what the hell.

Yes. Especially on pepperoni thin crust with white sauce.

I'm sorry, Mom. :(

deathfaith2 karma

Thank you for the AMA!

If you were /u/spez or a reddit executive, how would you suggest dealing with /r/t_d?

Damadar23 karma

As a former data analyst, I would probably want tons of data to look at. I'd want to know what the report-to-non-report ratio looks like compared to other active subs, for example. I'd also want to implement a team that reviewed active reports, (focusing on the subs with more abuse violations) and ensure that they are following the Reddit TOS.

If T_D is constantly violating the TOS, and it's being encouraged by Sub leaders, (like other subs have in the past) I'd bring down the ban hammer, probably. But I don't have enough information about the real problems with T_D to give a fully honest answer; I'd need a lot more data.

One thing I'd probably do differently, though, is be more transparent about it.

yoursmartfriend2 karma

Missouri has been in the national spotlight for various racial justice issues. From police brutality to systemic racism and native rights, what will you do for these communities living in your district?

Damadar2 karma

I'm lucky to live in an area where these claims don't happen often. Our police chief (in Union) goes out of his way to ensure that his officers appropriately deal with the public. As a result, his officers (under his leadership) have never had a claim of unnecessary force against them.

But, that said, it's not enough to focus just at home. There could be underlying issues that are not publicly disclosed in my area. I want to be the most communicative person that has ever run in my district. I've got plenty of lines of communication open, and I want people to reach out to me.

The best thing I can do for anyone who feels there is a problem is be reachable. From there, we can work on policy changes or finding other solutions that will benefit and protect citizens. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect. A lot of people shout because nobody listens when they talk.

I want to listen.

Thanks for your question!

liamemsa2 karma

Do you think that you might be somehow related ancestrally to Rob Corddry, given that your names are so similar? One might wonder if they were changed slightly when immigrating to the US.

Damadar1 karma

Unlikely, but anything is possible, I suppose! That would be neat.

CheezeCaek22 karma

How do you react to the word "God"?

Damadar1 karma

Is there an appropriate way to react to a word? Using hyperbole, there are thousands of religions around the world. I can't imagine having any kind of reaction when discovering someone believes something, unless they try pushing it on me.

Joestac2 karma

How about a Marry-F-Kill? America, Jesus, Freedom. Go.

Damadar10 karma

I spent a few minutes staring at my monitor when I read this question. This is the best response I have.

Sorry. :(

Yeahisme20152 karma

Do you believe in keeping our Constitution complete and intact as it is now? All so I think both political parties have been corrupted to the core. Would you run now or later as a independent? Or do you feel the 2 party system is working. Thank you for your time.

Damadar5 karma

To answer your party question: Our voting system, (adversarial) lends itself to a 2 party system, no matter who the two parties are. In so doing, it leaves a large swath of people feeling underrepresented. That's why I want ranked choice voting in Missouri. To give everyone a more equal voice in choosing our leaders.

As for keeping our constitution complete and intact? Well, my thinking is that the constitution is a fantastic framework that provides us with a great foundation for building a working set of State Governments and a good Federal government. However, to think it should never be changed would be a fallacy; before it was ratified, James Madison was working on getting the bill of rights amended on. And I think that we have a good process for interpreting it in the Supreme Court. (The same in our State).

So, should the Constitution(s) never be changed? No. There are good justifications for changes and interpretations, and I believe the intent of the founding fathers was that the Constitution be used to reflect the best of our society at any given time.


condomchewer2 karma

Why are you jumping on the AMA bandwagon to market yourself?

Damadar5 karma

I love AMA's, and this is a good way to get some of my views out there while being held to a high standard. These are also a great way to expose people to multiple points of view.

Plus I like answering questions. :)

Tuesdaythe5th2 karma

Hey James! Your D&D posts are super good!

How do you feel about socialism? And the growing interest in socialist principals and organization like the Democratic Socialists of America?

Damadar2 karma

Socialism has always been a part of the United States. That's how we got the Interstate system. Police, the Army, Fire Departments, roadways, these are all socialist policies.

I wouldn't call myself a socialist, but I don't have a hatred for socialists or think they're bad people out to steal my money. I think, as in all things, a balance between socialism and a free market is appropriate.


rararaknee2 karma

Are you as good of a salesman as Danny?

Damadar3 karma

Oh man, I love the office. I completely forgot about him.

But uh, no. Definitely not. I wish, though. That would make this whole thing easy, right?

HaywoodJablomiMD2 karma

So does just anyone run for an office these days striving for that "relatable person" vote?

Damadar2 karma

I dunno what other people strive for. I'm striving to be genuine.

mummyking2 karma

your just a damn commy?

Damadar2 karma

Nah. More of a Star Wars fan, although Star Trek is cool too.

tiredapplestar2 karma


Damadar7 karma

I think it's a requirement to be human and have committed flaws in your past that you might not be proud of. Nobody is squeaky clean.

I just hope we can all be courteous, and understanding with each other, and try empathy before we throw stones. :)

DangerBabyxX1 karma

What are your views on dress codes that seem to target females more than males?

Damadar2 karma

Rules should be applied fairly and evenly.

Dress codes, in general, are dumb, though. If you can't take someone seriously unless they're wearing certain clothes, maybe you should examine why that is, and really think on it.


wolley_dratsum1 karma

Do you think you can win?

Damadar3 karma


I think anything is possible, but I don't think it will be easy. I don't think it should be easy, either. This is a BIG IMPORTANT THING.


scumbag-reddit0 karma

What are your views on upholding the constitution?

Damadar67 karma

What are your views on upholding the constitution?

That's an incredibly vague question; do you mean the Missouri Constitution, or the US Constitution? Do you have a specific clause, or premise of one of those that you'd like to talk about?

The quick/easy/politician answer is, "Totally for it. Big thumbs up!" - but I assume you want to talk about something specific?

MrPerfidy19 karma

You didn't invoke the founders OR refer to God OR thank our veterans, BOOOOO! :)

Damadar20 karma

Well, since you mention the founding fathers... I'm reading a really cool book right now about the beginning of the United States of America called "Founding Rivals" - and it starts off talking about how James Madison wrote the first three big statements our country gave:

George Washington's Inaugural Address The Congressional Response Washington's Reply

Just thought that was neat.

cesarmac8 karma

Hehehe I like that final response. Up vote for you.

Damadar6 karma

Thanks! :)

deathfaith-1 karma

They're likely in reference to the vast majority of the Whitehouse which uses the constitution as toilet paper.

Damadar5 karma

I'm going to try real hard not to make assumptions about what other people think or feel, although I'm human and will fail at this, like everyone else.

Rabbitacular_IRL-6 karma

Hi James, Your Peter Rabbit movie looks like trash which takes traditionally lovable characters and turns them into punchlines for fart jokes. If you are this reprehensible with a beloved literary character and were out of touch enough to sign on for a project that makes as big of a misstep to think that parents want to take their kids into what amounts as a funny blasphemous abortion of a movie, what makes you think that you have the fiber of being to become a representative of the people of Missouri?

Edit: autocorrected wrong

Damadar2 karma

Well, I guess I'd have to say this: I'm James Cordrey, not James Corden.

But he made $4 million in 2017, I think, so maybe I should ask him for a donation?

Maybe a good campaign slogan would be: James Cordrey for Missouri State Representative. Not James Corden. He's never sang with Alanis Morissette, and never made an animated movie.

What do you think? Rolls of the tongue, right?


alafap-8 karma


Damadar2 karma

Sorry, I'm not interested in bribing people for votes. :(

Best of luck in finding a pizza, though!