Priorities

My priorities in Congress will be to address the needs of our district:

  1. Support the development of good paying jobs for working families, including renewable energy, manufacturing, and natural resource management jobs;
  2. Provide affordable and accessible health care for all;
  3. Care for our troops while they are in uniform, and our veterans when they return home;
  4. Safeguard our environment by sustainably managing our water, air quality, public lands, and cultural resources; and
  5. Provide college education in exchange for public service.

Government has an important role in making this happen by providing the resources, creating incentives, and/or collaborating with other sectors to accomplish these goals.  It’s important that this work is done in a way that builds the public’s trust in their representative government.

Government’s Roles and Responsibilities

“We the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

The Preamble to our Constitution establishes three areas of government responsibility:

  1. Ensure safety from internal conflict and external attack,
  2. Create and enforce just laws, and
  3. Provide a physical and social infrastructure for healthy families, individuals, and economy.

Policy Goals:

1. Ensure safety from internal conflict and external attack

    • Ensure our military personnel receive the support they need – resources, advocacy, and behavioral health services – during their active duty and their transition back to civilian life.
      • Prior to troop deployment, Congress should fully account for the cost of meeting the needs of our troops to ensure they are covered.
    • Reduce the national debt.
      • Ensure future generations are not financially dependent on other nations and can make their own decisions about how to invest their tax dollars.
    • Ensure election integrity with campaign finance reform and by limiting the influence of foreign governments and big business on our elections.
      • Includes support to overturn Citizens United, transparency for paid Internet campaign ads, and collaborate with states to ensure all Americans can vote without prejudice or undue restrictions.
    • Ensure trade deals support Oregon businesses and level the playing field by protecting workers and our shared environment.
    • Support community-based solutions, such as the Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement, that address local issues, meet treaty obligation, and achieve regional policy goals.

2. Create and enforce just laws

        • Our public health and safety institutions, including our prisons, need to be under public control and held accountable for their actions by common sense regulation.
          • Private prisons create a monetary incentive to incarcerate people.  Public control can ensure standards for hygiene, diet, and basic human rights.
        • Our immigration system needs to provide for national security while also creating a path to citizenship for those who have grown up in the U.S. or who have notably contributed to our economy, our communities, or our national defense.
          • Citizenship for those who have paid their fair share through taxes and other means is good for our agricultural sector, reduces fear and bullying in schools, and creates safer communities by encouraging positive engagement with public safety. We are a nation of laws; they should be fair laws.
        • Our Tax Code must provide the resources necessary to support our basic physical and social infrastructure while also reducing our federal deficit.
          • This includes supporting healthy families, small businesses, and those seeking higher education, while establishing disincentives for corporations who off-shore their businesses outside the U.S.
        • Encourage Corporate and Tax Law to employ long-term investments and holistic measures of success, rather than maximizing quarterly profits.

3.  Provide a physical and social infrastructure for healthy families, individuals, and economy

        • Ensure financial and regional access to a full range of physical and behavioral healthcare for all, leaving up to individuals a full range of choices.
        • Support development of clean energy (solar, wind, geothermal) to create good-paying jobs and reduce environmental impacts by shifting tax incentives to clean sustainable energy systems and away from dirty fuels.
        • Ensure financial access to education –  including college, technical, and trade schools – by rewarding public service with free tuition and forgiveness for student debt.
          • This helps address community needs and supports business growth through developing an educated workforce.
        • Maintain public lands and natural resources through sustainable management.
          • Sufficiently fund the US Forest Service to thin forests which will reduce the risk of wildfires, protect air quality, and provide jobs.
        • Support Internet access for rural communities and ensure net neutrality to encourage business growth and innovation.
        • Support installation of basic infrastructure for housing and community development, focusing on rural communities and higher-need populations.
          • Support community reintegration for veterans, people recovering from addiction, and people leaving incarceration having paid their debt to society.
        • Support water and sanitation system upgrades to meet public health standards, with a focus on low income rural areas.
        • Support development of interstate transportation systems, including roadways and high-speed rail.
        • Safeguard our water resources by ensuring that inter-boundary agreements protect Oregon’s long-term interests.
        • Preserve our natural, native, and ranching heritage by protecting our wildlife and ecosystems in Oregon and throughout the country.

I will work to protect our country, establish just laws, and ensure Oregon gets our fair share of tax dollars to support the development of our physical and social infrastructure and to prepare our district for the 21st century.