My name is Quang Do and I am the first Asian-American immigrant running for the Alabama State House. I'm also the first public high school educator (I teach 12th Grade AP Gov and Politics) to run in nearly 25 years.

Our platform is simple: Educate, Reform, Empower.

If we want to be genuine about fixing our education system we have to reform what's happening outside the classroom to empower our families to fix what's happening inside of it.

You can take a kid from an inner city school and move him to the suburbs but nothing changes if that single parent still has to work 60-80 hours a week and can't support their kids education, nothing changes if that parent gets sick and the kid has to pick up extra shifts at work to help pay the bills because their jobs don't provide health insurance, nothing changes if the car breaks down and there is not a public transit system to help get the kids to school.

Our primary opponent has received over $300,000 (for a state legislative seat!!!) From corporations and super-pacs. We have made a committment to not accept a dollar from any special interest groups and stand by that committment. But we need your help!

Please feel free to share with anyone who might be interested in our fight to #DoBetterFor55 and Alabama.

Check out our Facebook @ or our website at

Here is an interview with a local political podcast for a more in depth look of our platform.

You can view our campaign fundraising page at

I look forward to hearing from you and answering your questions!


Edit: some great questions so far! I'm teaching right now but keep asking and I will respond later on in the day. Please consider donating at to help us fight to #DoBetterFor55 and Alabama.

Comments: 82 • Responses: 27  • Date: 

draebderredbeard9 karma

If elected, what will be your first priority for legislation?

QuangDoforDistrict5529 karma

Ah, yes! Was waiting for this question. Our team has been working and have decided to put bi-partisan bills that we KNOW can be done immediately at the top of our list rather than things that we know can be done after some organizing and coalition building work.

My first priority, and I hope District 55 will hold me accountable to this, will always be our working class families. Whenever the opportunity presents itself for me to pass, vote or fund legislation and policies that will directly benefit our families I will do that above any other priority.

Three specific pieces of bi-partisan legislation:

  1. The introduction of an amendment that guarantees the survival of the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for a minimum of 20 years with a requirement of it being assessed for extension every 5 years. Alabama currently provides ZERO state-funding for children's healthcare. All of our funding comes from the federal government. That's just not good enough. The health and lives of our children should not be up to who is in the White House.

  2. Introduce home rule. Municipalities in Alabama are required to go to the State Capitol for approval on local-level bills, amendments and funding. The Birmingham City Council, for example, voted to increase minimum wage from the federal minimum $7.25 to $10.10/hr but was stopped by the Alabama House Legislator which retroactively banned local governments from setting minimum wage.

  3. Creation of a state lottery to help fund public schools/expand pre-k, the CHIP program, and pre-trial diversion programs aimed at ending the school-to-prison pipeline.

Dream Priorities:

  1. Campaign finance reform. Alabama has one of the most corrupt political systems in the country. I would work to make us the national model for governing without corporate or special interest dollars.
  2. Creation of a state minimum wage that adjusts with income.
  3. Ending of "special school districts" that leave poor and marginalized students out to dry.

Quantext6097 karma

Where would you put yourself on the political spectrum?

QuangDoforDistrict5511 karma

I would align most with "Berniecrat" minus some of the global isolationist views of the platform.

Off the top of my head:

Economy: I'd rather have a dozen mom-and-pop grocery stores than one Wal-Mart.

Education: Publicly funded post-secondary programs, increase funding for HBCU's, create better pathways for parents to be engaged in the classroom by supporting them outside of it.

Crime: Decriminalize marijuana but increase penalties for drug trafficking. Our criminal justice system should not be punitive but be truly restorative and rehabilitative.

Social: I'm a single father of a 6 year old and my co-parent is in an LGBTQ relationship so I am in full support of LGBTQ rights and protections, personally pro-life as a Catholic but politically pro-choice because I, or no other man, should have a say in what my daughter does with her body.

Let me know if there's anything specific things you'd like me to expand on!

Thank you again for stopping by.


Do you agree with Bernie's "white people don't know what it's like to be poor or live in ghettos" tirade

QuangDoforDistrict5518 karma

"white people don't know what it's like to be poor or live in ghettos"

No, I do not agree with it because, when you look at the data and statistics, it just isn't true. Over 20 million white Americans live in poverty. Saying that does nothing to help address the plight of anyone.

Being completely honest and transparent, though, I think what it means to be poor and Black in America is contrastingly different than what it means to be White and poor in America.

The data on this is pretty clear: when you control for income, Black and Brown Americans have far worse socio-economic outcomes than White Americans. I do think that has a lot to do with some of the wounds we have from slavery, segregation and Jim Crow that we have yet to heal.

Black and Brown Americans are still suffering from hundreds of years of systemic and institutionalized racism but saying that "white people don't know what it means to be poor" is just plain wrong and inaccurate.

Dontjudgemeforasking4 karma

When it comes to funding education, would you be in support of equalizing funding across school systems or targeting underfunded schools and increasing funding for them specifically?

QuangDoforDistrict5512 karma

What a really, really fantastic question.

I'm going to be honest with you - I don't think either of those options are enough to fix the issues with education in Alabama.

Birmingham City Schools receives just as much funding (when you look at spending per student) as the schools in the suburbs, but the dollar doesn't go nearly as far when the only meal some of our students get are when they are at school, it doesn't go nearly as far when students are having to work 30-40 hour a week jobs after school to help pay the rent, it doesn't go nearly as far when the young man or woman can't study at night because they're too busy being worried about the gunshots outside their house, and it definitely doesn't go as far when teachers are having to spend 60% of instruction time addressing behavioral problems rather than focused on helping students reach their learning goals.

If we want to be honest about fixing education, we have to be honest about addressing poverty. We cannot have an equitable education system until all parents and families have the same economic opportunities outside the classroom as we expect students to have educational opportunities inside the classroom.

So how do we fix this without just throwing more money at the problem?

  1. Create a state minimum wage that adjusts annually with cost of living.
  2. Guarantee that anyone who works 35 hours a week (even if it's 18 hours a week at one job and 17 hours at another) will have health insurance.
  3. Implement a state fund (Alabama is one of 3 states that does not have this) for public transportation to make access to high quality, good paying jobs in our city and state not so dependent on whether or not you have a car.
  4. Decriminalizing marijuana and retro-actively clear the records for anyone previously charged with minor possession offenses.

ALL of those things and so much ore are required to truly fix our education system and create an environment where parents have the financial resources to support their students in the classroom.

We shouldn't make the classroom any "easier" by lowering standards but we should make it easier for our parents to be engaged in the classroom by reforming what's happening outside of it to empower them to be available inside of it.

To answer your question specifically:

I think we need to raise the standards and make it much more difficult for cities trying to create their own "special districts" that essentially cut out black, poor and marginalized students and remove tax revenue from poor and working class families.

A county school recently tried to separate from the county system and create their own "city" school system but the DOJ came down and denied their request (even though our state and county said yes) because they would have disenfranchised black families and it was quite simply, racist. It was a school that was 60% black and the new district would have made it less than 10% black. All tax revenue in the new school district would have gone to the new "upper class" school which means the taxes (sales and real estate) would be taken from the old school and placed with the new one. The fact that this would have come into fruition without the DOJ stepping in is ABSOLUTELY disgusting.

Dontjudgemeforasking4 karma

A good, complex answer. Thank you.

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma

You're welcome. Don't worry, I didn't judge you for asking.

Please feel free to follow us on facebook or reach out to us at [email protected] if you have any more questions, comments or concerns. It's going to take everyone in District 55, Alabama and America for us to truly reform our government from one focused on the concerns of corporations and interest groups to one that fights for our working and middle class families.

We need and appreciate any help or guidance you could provide.

1tudore3 karma

Do you support Ranked Choice Voting to avoid spoilers and encourage more positive campaigning?

QuangDoforDistrict554 karma

Yes! I would take it further and suggest non-partisan ballots as well as supporting public* funding of the electoral process through a tax for political donations by corporate entities and lobbying groups that then go into a public fund for campaigning (if Wal-Mart gives you $10,000, half of that money then goes to the general pool to support all candidates).

I used to wonder why only lawyers and businessmen became politicians but now I've realized it's because they're the only ones who have the money to! Just basic things like printing, advertising, and marketing are more expensive than most people would realize, I am literally spending all of my personal savings (which, as a teacher, ya'll know isn't much) on this race. A public fund that guarantees all political candidates with at least some support would guarantee that we not only have more positive campaigning but a more demographically reflective legislature.

On a side-note... please consider helping us even the fight against our opponent by donating at

Fortunatious3 karma

What is your stance on the polarization of American politics? If it’s good, how will you play a part in it? If it is bad, how will you and your campaign address the issue? (Also good luck this fall!)

QuangDoforDistrict553 karma

Thank you! We actually have no republican Challenger so the Primary IS the election.


We just covered this in class. Research has shown that Americans are actually much more centrist and closer ideologically/politically than what the media would suggest.

There are countless things that Americans of all races, ethnicities, genders and political ideologies agree upon and I think we need to start with those things first.

For Alabama, specifically, things like marijuana decriminalization, banning private prisons, ending civil forfeiture, implementation of home rule, addressing poverty, and providing adequate healthcare for our families and children are are all issues that Alabamians agree upon.

aetheradept2 karma

I like the campaign finance reform, but are you gonna defend our rights in the Senate? Alabama has always been strong on defending the constitution and I'm proud of my state for that. Most alabamians are trending toward hardcore libertarianism these days.

Another issue with our state is the schools in Selma. Most of the people in these schools live in abhorrent conditions. I would really like for my state to rebuild these schools. Not with property tax money as they are very poor. I hate the fact that kids have to live with that.

I really want to know how you stand on the constitution? This is the biggest issue when voting for a senator for my state to me. Also they will probably kill you if you try to reform campaign finance.

QuangDoforDistrict551 karma

Yes. I will work my butt off to fight for the rights of working and middle class families in America. I couldn't care less about what corporate or private lobbying groups want.

Can you be more specific about the Constitution?

datbech2 karma

For being a newcomer to a very inefficient Alabama State House, what would be your strategy for shaking off the dust and getting the gears turning to produce meaningful legislation?

QuangDoforDistrict558 karma

I'll be transparent in saying that I disagree with your statement about the inefficiency of the Alabama State House. I'd argue that our State House is extremely efficient, so efficient that they decided to end session early by nearly a month because they "had done everything they set out to do" even though there were several bills that hadn't even been discussed yet and several high-impact bills (HB317 for example that will allow for private interest groups and corporations to continue exploiting the people of Alabama) that were passed without any real discussion or debate.

Our State House cares more about the people giving them money under the table or donating to their campaigns than they do about the working and middle class families of Alabama. Our State House has been infiltrated by dark money and the way we operate reflects that. We had the same problems regardless of whatever political party is in power.

To answer your question:

A lot of political veterans have told me to "tone down my language" because they don't want me to "burn any bridges" before I get down to Montgomery. My answer? I don't give a damn. I'm not going down there to make friends. I'm not going down there to have fun. I'm going down to fight against a racist, sexist and homophobic state government. I'm going down to fight for our public schools, families, and communities like noone else has before.

I'm going to keep EVERYONE accountable. I'm going to bring back names and information to educate my District on why we couldn't get done what we wanted to and then I will do everything I can to work with them to organize Americans from all parts of Alabama and America to hold our State House as accountable as possible by voting them out of office.

This is more than just an election for me, this is the start to a truly progressive, inclusive and accountable Alabama.

1tudore1 karma

How can Alabama make progress in school desegregation?

QuangDoforDistrict553 karma

I think the first step is for Alabama, as a whole, to admit that we still have a major issue with school segregation. We still have some open wounds from slavery, Jim Crow, and the Civil Rights Movement but we prefer to wrap it up and hide it rather than performing the surgery needed to really move forward and heal from our past.

I once drove a young man on my soccer team home from practice - he lived nearly 35 minutes from the school. When I pulled up to his apartment complex I saw there was a "special district" school literally BEHIND his apartment complex. He could have walked to the other school (one of the top schools in our state in terms of graduation rate, test scores and average parental income) but instead had to ride the bus to a school thirty minutes away because his apartment complex had a literal line cutting them out from the "special school district"

I'm going to copy and paste a more pragmatic answer from someone else who asked a similar question:

I think we need to raise the standards and make it much more difficult for cities trying to create their own "special districts" that essentially cut out black, poor and marginalized students and remove tax revenue from their cities. The current required number of households for a school to create a special tax zone and school district is 5,000. I would push that number to 25,000 to ensure that poor communities are not being exploited.

A county school recently tried to separate from the county system and create their own "city" school system but the DOJ came down and denied their request (even though our state and county said yes) because they would have disenfranchised black families and was quite simply, racist. It was a school that was 60% black and the new district would have made it less than 10% black. All tax revenue in the new school district would have gone to the new "upper class" school which means the taxes (sales and real estate) would be taken from the old school and placed with the new one. The fact that this would have come into fruition without the DOJ stepping in is ABSOLUTELY disgusting.

1tudore1 karma

Have you reached out to Rep Grace Meng's ASPIRE PAC or other Asian American candidate organizations?

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma

I have not! I have reached out to some AAPI organizations but not specifically ASPIRE PAC. I would LOVE to hear more about the organization. Do you happen to have a good contact? Feel free to PM me or reach out to us directly at [email protected]

1tudore1 karma

To increase turnout by easing participation, would you support vote by mail1 ?

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma


1tudore1 karma

What kind of wrap-around services are necessary to prevent summer learning loss and otherwise ensure low-income students are able to reach their full educational potential?

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma

Wrap-around services:

I think wrap-around services should be done in conjunction with addressing poverty in Alabama. The more time, resources and opportunities that parents have to be engaged with their child's learning the better. Continued parental engagement, not any service or summer learning program, in the educational process is the key for educational success.

We must make it easier for our parents to teach, spend time and learn with their kids. Wrap-around services are a band-aid to a bigger problem that we have with multi-generational poverty in our state.

You could have no summer programs, but if all parents in Alabama were able to have the time and money to spend with their kids instead of having to work 2 sometimes 3 jobs just to pay the water bill, I guarantee you that education outcomes from our state would be significantly improved.

If parents weren't having to work 60-80 hours a week to just put food on the table they could actually spend the money they would have summer learning or tutoring on trips to the museum, public lectures, or a multitude of other ways that can grow the parent bond with the child.

From a pragmatic perspective:

Alabama has the best pre-k program in the country.

The problem? Only a small percentage of families in our state actually have access to it due to lack of state commitment to fully fund our pre-k program to reach 100% of families who need them.

Aventric1 karma

What are your stances/potential solutions regarding illegal immigration?

QuangDoforDistrict553 karma

I think it's important for us to be very intentional in educating ourselves on both documented and undocumented immigration.

I'll be honest in saying that I do not believe that undocumented and/or illegal immigration is as much of a "crisis" as some might say. I do not believe in completely open borders but I do believe that a large majority of undocumented immigrants are here for the same reason all of us are - to chase the American Dream.


Undocumented immigration has decreased by 2 million since President Obamas tenure. Undocumented immigrants give more to our economy than they take "away". Undocumented immigrants move to America for economic reasons more than any other. The American economy would collapse without the undocumented workforce.


I don't think we need to do anything differently than we have been. If you're undocumented and commit a heinous crime, we need to get you out of here. If you are a drug trafficker, we need to get you out of here. But if you are a productive member of society, if you have kids here, if you are doing everything you can to do the right thing for your family, we should treat you with respect and compassion.

As a teacher, I have too many brilliant young men and women who live their daily lives in fear of either them or their parents being deported. We must protect our families and kids whether they are documented, undocumented or American citizens.

1tudore0 karma

What are the greatest challenges to having IDEA and ADA compliant schools and how can Alabama overcome those challenges?

QuangDoforDistrict553 karma

I am in full support of strict enforcement of IDEA and ADA rules and regulations. This is what equal opportunity is all about.

I think the main challenge that we face in regards to being IDEA and ADA compliant is funding.

Major sections of IDEA and ADA, while important, are unfunded mandates.

You're expecting teachers, administrators and school communities with already tight budgets to do more (we should always be pushing and challenging our education system to be and do better) but not give them the funds, staffing or facilities they need to meet those goals appropriately?

And THEN you're going to give them a bad score on a state-wide "school report card" that impacts how much funding they get in the future, which then results in the loss of further teachers and resources... which then makes it even harder for them to meet those standards next year? How does that make sense?

Alabama has got to stop waiting for the federal government to bail us out and take ownership over the problems that we have.

The Democrats in Congress have tried for a long time to fully fund IDEA but we can't wait for the federal government to save us anymore. It's time for us to take ownership over the problems we have and work on no-nonsense, bi-partisan solutions that will help our working and middle class families.

An easy solution would be to create a state lottery that will help fund IDEA and ADA compliance for our public schools as well as our post-secondary education institutions.

MasterProtoge-1 karma

What does Quang Do?

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma

I am currently a teacher but previously served as Advocacy and Policy Director for a local non-profit and was a social justice educator and student affairs professional at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) before that.


Are you for or against defending rights?

QuangDoforDistrict554 karma

For BUT I think it's important for us to understand that our rights have never been "absolute." They have been continually adjusted throughout our great history through legislation and our court system.

I'm a big believer in our political and policymaking system.


Are you for or against my second amendment rights?

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma

I'm not sure why you are getting downvoted, I think you are asking a very solid question that is important to MANY Americans and Alabamians.

I am a gun owner myself and understand, beyond the guns themselves, the cultural and historical connection that America has with the second amendment.

With that being said, no amendment is absolute in it's definition. All of our rights have evolved over time including but not limited to freedom of speech, assembly and protest. I tend to lean with what Justice Scalia said on this topic during the Heller case. We certainly have the right to bear arms but that doesn't mean that there can't be limits or regulations on it.

I think there are many common things that Americans on all sides of the political spectrum agree on (universal background checks and mental health screening for examples) and regardless of how I personally feel about an issue, I think it's important for elected officials to advocate for the concerns and needs of their constituents.

Amiib00-6 karma

You've beat around the bush quite a lot. What are your thoughts on firearms? Tell it straight.

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma

I am a firm believer in our constitution and the rights it grants to us.

I believe that the current conversation of "all or nothing" when it comes to addressing gun violence are misguided and a false dichotomy.

I support bi-partisan solutions to address gun violence.

91% of Americans agree on UBCs 84% on requiring Mental Health Checks 72% on raising the age to buy to 21 69% on more SROs in schools 60% on bannjnf assault weapons.

I wholly support the second amendment but also support these bi-partisan solutions to address gun violence in our country. I do not believe that defending the second amendment necessarily means that we don't have serious conversations about evolvinf it to fit our current need.

Since we are on the topic of gun violence, I don't believe there is one simple solution to fix all the problems we have with gun deaths in America. Gun violence in our Union is multilayered and complex and I think our solutions need to reflect that. What happened in Parkland is much different than what happened to Trayvon Martin and that is much different than what's happening in West Birmingham.

Amiib002 karma

"Assault weapons" are not a thing. That's a dangerous thing to push. Lost my vote.

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma

I'm sorry to hear that. Regardless of whether or not you vote for me, know that I am committed to fighting for you and your community.

Assault weapons are certainly a thing... The Federal Assault Weapons ban that sunset in 2004 is real and the fact that there is no current federal ban on assault weapons is real.

I think you're assuming that I am trying to conflate semi-automatic rifles like an AR-15 with something like a machine gun. I know that an AR-15 is not an assault rifle with stock equipment, but when given the right modifications (bump stocks + extended magazine) i think the argument could be made that it is more or less one. I own an AR-15 myself, have shot a military-grade M4A1 and have also shot my AR-15 with a bump stock. The bump stock clearly turns the AR-15 into an assault rifle by all definitions.

The data on whether or not the assault weapon ban from 1994-2004 actually worked is unclear. Assault Weapons have been not been used in any recent mass shootings (except in Las Vegas when the shooter used a bump stock) so it wouldn't stop a large majority of gun deaths (most are suicides and domestic disputes).

Let's be clear: An assault weapons ban won't stop a kid getting shot down the street by gangbangers, an assault weapons ban won't stop a young man from getting shot by the police, but what it will do is make shooters like the one in Las Vegas hurt a whole lot less people.

Again, I don't think there is one single solution that will solve all of our problems. Mental health checks won't stop a kid from joining a gang but it will help stop what happened in Newtwon, UBCs won't stop someone from committing suicide but it will stop what happened at Pulse Night Club.

If 60% of my constituents want something to help make their lives safer, and I don't feel like the data is clear one way or the other, I'm going to always side with my constituents. My job is to represent my constituents not the other way around.

Tldr: sorry I lost your vote. I don't believe an assault weapons will solve all of our gun problems and that it should be done in conjunction with other methods and should be adjusted specifically to each community.b

Amiib001 karma

If you support only banning something like an AR with a bump stock, then that's fien with me. Bump stocks are already incredibly dangerous to hold and it is a loophole on full auto weapons.

QuangDoforDistrict552 karma

I certainly support an assault weapons ban that also includes a provision for bump stocks but I do not think that is the solution to gun violence. I think there needs to be a holistic and multi-layered conversation to really address it appropriately. We've been trying small Band-Aids for too long.

Thank you for engaging in the conversation!

YUDODISDO-18 karma

The fact you refuse to simply state you're for my rights tells me all I need to know about you as a politician

Bonus points for wanting to be in the government, and being against the right for civilians to stop tyrannical governments

QuangDoforDistrict5510 karma

We made a commitment this campaign to be as honest and transparent about our views as possible. I am for defending the rights of Alabamians and all Americans but I wanted to be intentional in bringing up the facts behind the rights granted to us in the constitution. I apologize if that in anyway came off as me avoiding or refusing to answer your question.

All of the amendments within the Bill of Rights have provisions, protections and limitations that are determined through our political processes, either directly by the citizens via the ballot or indirectly through the Judicial, Executive or Legislative branches of government.

Again, I am a gun owner and enthusiast and would like to think that I have a good understanding of the social, historical and political significance of the second amendment. I was born in a country that does not have the same freedoms and protections like in America and I have made it my life goal to do everything I possibly can to protect those freedoms for my daughter but the job of an elected official is not to do what THEY want but to do what their citizens have asked of them.

Thank you again for the insightful conversation.


Are you for or against my freedom of religion?

QuangDoforDistrict555 karma

I will preface this with saying that I am a strong believer in the fact that the first amendment that protects me, as a Christian, from persecution also applies to the freedom of Buddhists, Muslims and any other spiritual/religious groups as well as those who are secular and atheist from persecution and oppression.

I am a firm believer in the freedom of religion. I am a devout Catholic and a proud member of the local Vietnamese-Catholic church here in Birmingham.

Many of my family members were murdered and killed in Communist Vietnam for their religious beliefs so I certainly know what can happen when we don't actively work to protect our right to believe in what we would like to believe.


I am a firm believer in the freedom of religion

Why won't you say that about the right to bear arms?

Especially since you claim to use said right

QuangDoforDistrict557 karma

I am a firm believer in the right to bear arms. Again, I'm not sure where I was unclear on that so I apologize for any confusion. I will be sure to be more direct in the future.

I do believe that, just like the freedom of religion, I need to be intentional in communicating what I believe "the right to bear arms" means and what our constitution and SCOTUS have determined it to mean.

The right to bear arms does not mean that I can buy whatever gun I want, however I want, whenever I want. It means that as a country, we don't get to decide whether or not you can buy a gun (unless we take it away through a constitutional amendment) but we do get to decide the limitations on what constitutes "the right to bear arms."

The Supreme Court has reaffirmed the flexibility of local municipalities, states and the federal government to amend and adjust the meanings of different rights countless times throughout our history.

To ignore this fact is to ignore how our government works and what the Bill of Rights and Constitution actually are.

Tillpteli5er-3 karma

How much should I weigh a candidate's race or ethnicity when deciding how to vote in an election?

QuangDoforDistrict553 karma

As much as you'd like. All Americans weigh things differently and if having a visually diverse and ideologically progressive government is important to you than I would be grateful for your support.

If it's not, I hope I can get your support for my passion and committment to fighting for poor and working class families of District 55 and Alabama.