Protecting And Strengthening Our Democracy

Voting Rights

The Right To Vote Must Be Sacred To All Of Us

Every citizen who is 18 years old or older and wants to vote must be allowed to vote.  It’s really as simple as that.

I support:

  • automatic voter registration

  • same day voter registration

  • expanded early voting

  • expanded and simplified voting by mail

  • full voting rights restoration for individuals that have completed criminal sentences

  • any other reform that makes casting a ballot easy and accessible to all eligible voters

Republicans, including Doug Lamborn, are fighting hard to make it more difficult for all eligible citizens to vote because they would rather pick their voters

than allow voters to pick their elected representatives.

This is unacceptable, and every American has a duty to put an end to it.

Confronting Right-Wing Domestic Terrorism

Militia Groups And White Supremacists Threaten National Security

The January 6, 2021, insurrection was all the proof we need that right-wing terrorism is a significant threat to our national security and democracy.

Violent domestic extremist groups must be confronted and stopped.

I support:

  • Dramatically stepping up federal law enforcement efforts to identify, confront, and dismantle violent domestic extremist groups planning attacks against Americans and American institutions

Trumpism And The GOP

Republicans Have Placed Party Over Country

Trumpism is about the political and financial fortunes of the Trump family, not about ideas. We know this because we have seen time and time again that whatever Trump says or wants is what adherents of Trumpism support. This is a fine way to run a cult, but it’s no way to run a political party and it is incredibly toxic.

Republicans must disavow Trumpism and strive to build a party of ideas. Only then can Americans engage in informed and robust debate about competing visions for what is best for the future of our country.

Small Business Investment Program

Investing In Americans Is Always Worth It

All Americans benefit when American entrepreneurship thrives. There’s no shortage of Americans that can succeed in forming their own small businesses with the right kind of help from a much more ambitious approach to small business aid.

I support:

  • dramatically expanded subsidized small business startup and expansion loan programs with income-based repayment options on the model of student loan programs

  • complete “turn key” small business startup assistance from government-employed or contracted attorneys and accountants to help new small business owners navigate regulatory and tax requirements and other barriers to launching a new small business or expanding an existing one

 

Across America, small and medium sized towns are slowly dying. Many of the towns fortunate enough to have once been home to large employers have either seen those employers dramatically reduce their workforces or leave town altogether.

As a result, those individuals who love their towns sometimes have no choice but to leave to find work elsewhere. The same is true for young people who might want to stay in the communities where they grew up or return after college but have no job prospects.

Those who choose to stay or cannot afford to relocate are faced with a town that is a shadow of what it once was – empty storefronts and an almost complete lack of basic services.

Inner city neighborhoods have been struggling with this same issue for decades.

Plumbers, electricians, roofers, landscapers, and mechanics can all be hard to find, to say nothing of coffee shops, bookstores, and other small retail businesses that make a community feel vibrant.

This is a death spiral, and it could easily be interrupted and reversed with programs that help locals form their own small businesses to serve their friends, family, and neighbors in their communities.

Rather than squandering government resources on tax breaks for massive corporations that will never invest in small and medium sized towns or struggling inner city neighborhoods, that money is far better spent directly investing in the potential of entrepreneurial Americans right where they live.

Pro Middle Class Tax Policy

Trickle Down Economics Is A Scam

Our economy has been rigged to favor the ultra wealthy for over 40 years now.

Wealthy individuals and massive corporations simply do not make hiring decisions or open new businesses based on tax cuts. They make those decisions, more than anything else, based on demand for products and services.

The best way to expand the economy is to increase demand for products and services by putting more money in the pockets of working Americans.

Yet for decades we have squandered valuable taxpayer resources by throwing more and more money at the wealthiest households, which does nothing to increase demand.

To finally stop the relentless downward economic spiral brought about by the trickle down economics scam, we need to fund government programs that provide meaningful help to working Americans.

I support:

 

Under Warren’s proposal, 99.9 percent of American households would pay no additional taxes, and yet over 3 trillion dollars would be raised to help fund programs targeted at expanding the American middle class like the Small Business Investment ProgramFederal Job GuaranteeStudent Debt Relief proposalPro-Middle Class Health Care reform, and proposal for providing meaningful help for working parents.

By asking the top .1 percent of ultra wealthy households to pay a modest new tax, we can finally rebuild the American middle class and bring hope to struggling communities throughout America that have been devastated by shifts in the global economy coupled with the ridiculous scam of trickle down economics.

Meaningful Help For Working Parents

Teach Our Children Well

Working families need access to free quality daycare and preschools. There is simply no excuse for making parents choose between paying their bills and knowing that their kids are being safely cared for by licensed professionals trained in early childhood development and education.

I support:

  • fully funded daycares and preschools located in elementary schools in every community

Federal Job Guarantee

I’ll Say It Again: Trickle Down Economics Is A Scam

No American that wants a job should face chronic unemployment or underemployment.

Forty plus years of squandering taxpayer resources on tax cuts for the wealthy has done nothing but widen the gap between the rich and the poor. It certainly hasn’t brought us the living wages and sustained unemployment that Republicans promised.

The simple fact is that wealthy individuals and corporations do not start new businesses or make hiring decisions based on tax cuts. They make those decisions, more than anything else, based on demand for products and services.

To truly stimulate the economy, we need to juice demand. The best way to do that is to put more money in the pockets of working Americans. They will then spend the extra money on goods and services. The businesses that provide those goods and services will then hire more employees to meet the demand.

Republicans like Doug Lamborn want us to believe that this issue is more complicated than it is. Tax cuts targeted at the working class and government programs that invest in helping Americans tap into their full earnings potential are the best ways to stop the relentless downward spiral of trickle down economics.

It is long past the time for American government to invest in working Americans.

I support:

  • creating a federal job guarantee that ensures every American that wants to work can work for the public good while earning a living wage

Student Debt Relief

We Have To Hit The Reset Button

The student debt crisis cannot be ignored any longer.

I support:

  • complete student loan forgiveness or

  • changing the bankruptcy code to include student debt

 

It’s not a big mystery why student debt has ballooned to insane levels. For one thing, states haven’t invested in state university systems at anything approaching the levels needed to keep tuition affordable.

This lack of investment has resulted in skyrocketing tuition, as the universities have sought to maintain competitiveness on the backs of students.

This isn’t your grandparents’ college story: students today face tuition in the range of tens of thousands of dollars a year. There is simply no way to “pay as you go” in an employment marketplace that often doesn’t offer anything approaching a livable wage, let alone a wage that could pay exorbitant tuition on top of basic living expenses.

Without meaningful help from other sources, most students have had no choice but to borrow outrageous amounts of money simply to invest in their own futures.

Now they have hopeless amounts of debt, which is keeping them from being able to start the next chapters in their lives.

The story of the student debt crisis is not one of reckless borrowing; it’s a story of decades of negligent lack of investment in higher education that is being unfairly shouldered by students.

Addressing Systemic Racism and Discrimination

Police Reform

Black Lives Matter

American police officers should be the world’s leading experts in de-escalation techniques. Instead, the opposite occurs far too often, and this escalation of violence affects communities of color at a disproportionate rate. It has to stop.

I support:

  • federal legislation that models and incentivizes ongoing intensive training in de-escalation techniques with expectations of follow through and ongoing intensive psychological screening for police officers

  • federal legislation that creates robust financial and legal penalties for departments that have developed and continue to encourage a culture of violence and discrimination

  • increased federal funding for dramatically expanded Department of Justice Pattern and Practice Investigations into police departments across the nation to ensure that departments that tolerate or encourage a culture of violence and discrimination are held accountable by the federal government

Racial Justice And Equity

Time For Truth And Reconciliation

Everyone is entitled to equal treatment under the law and recognition of their fundamental human rights and dignity. There is nothing that should be controversial about this statement.

But it sometimes feels our American story has been a twisted game of whack-a-mole, in which each generation of Americans has had to engage in sustained battles against those who would deprive their fellow citizens of the basic rights and dignity we all deserve.

Systemic racism is something we have never fully confronted.

We are haunted to this day by the legacies of the genocide against indigenous Americans, slavery, the century of white supremacist terror that followed the abolition of slavery, and the more subtle forms of racism and discrimination that took root after the formal end of Jim Crow laws.

Until we look this brutal history directly in the eye and commit to unravelling the many ways it remains a factor in our society, we will never be able to move forward.

I support:

  • the establishment of a federal truth and reconciliation commission to fully examine and make recommendations about repairing the legacies of systemic racism that have terrorized communities of color and held America back from realizing its full potential

LGBTQ+ Equity

Another Opportunity For Truth And Reconciliation

Everyone deserves the equal protection of the law, and no one should live in fear that their basic rights and dignity are up for debate or may come under legal attack.

I support:

  • full equality under the law for LGBTQ+ Americans

  • the establishment of a federal truth and reconciliation commission to fully examine and make recommendations for dismantling systemic discrimination targeting our LGBTQ+ friends, family, and neighbors

Equitable Investment In Public Education

Teachers Are Paying Out Of Pocket For Classroom Supplies

Republicans like Doug Lamborn want us to believe that we are lavishing money on public education. But our nation’s teachers generally disagree, especially those who are literally chipping in out of their own pockets to make sure their students have the basic supplies they need.

I support:

  • Increased federal funding for public schools to makeup for the funding disparities at the state and local levels so that all children – regardless of zip code – have all the resources they need to thrive in the classroom

  • Focusing on equity in education funding and policy so that students from households with lower socioeconomic status or other systemic challenges are not continually disadvantaged as they move through the public education system

Disability Rights and Advocacy

Time To Build On The Progress That Has Been Made

The passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990 (ADA) brought about some badly needed reforms and protections for Americans with disabilities. But from housing, education, and employment to community integration, mental health, and access to justice, there is plenty of room to build on the achievements of the ADA in just about every facet of American life.

I support:

  • increased federal agency review and enforcement of existing disability laws

  • increased federal funding for critical disability programs

  • the establishment of a commission to comprehensively review and make recommendations to substantively address the unmet needs of Americans with disabilities

Public Safety

Guns And Public Safety

The Second Amendment Is Not Absolute

You can’t falsely shout fire in a crowded theater. All of our rights outlined in the Bill of Rights are subject to common sense limitations. The Second Amendment is no different.

I support:

  • Universal background checks for all gun purchases

  • Assault weapons ban

  • High capacity magazine ban

  • Federal and/or state gun licensing requirement

Law abiding gun owners have nothing to fear from these common sense reforms. But the creeping extremism of the NRA and Republican Party has convinced millions of Americans that any regulation on gun ownership is tantamount to a shredding of the Constitution.

There is no reason we cannot respect Second Amendment rights while at the same time protecting public safety.

Domestic Abuse Awareness And Prevention

All Americans Should Feel Safe In Their Homes

As a survivor of domestic abuse, I want to encourage anyone suffering from this often hidden scourge to seek help by reaching out to professionals as soon as possible.

www.tessacs.org

I support:

  • expanded federal support for state and local programs and nonprofits working to increase awareness of and substantively address domestic abuse

National Security

Green Jobs To Build Our Future Economy

Fossil Fuels Power A Fossilized Society

We all face an existential threat from catastrophic global climate change. That should be reason enough to part from our reliance on fossil fuels.

Sadly, that isn’t enough for Republicans like Doug Lamborn.

And if literally saving our planet does not provide sufficient motivation to make drastic changes, there is also the undeniable reality that the country that wins the race to transition to renewable energy will win the future.

I want that country to be America.

There is no downside to making sizable investments in emerging green energy technologies and markets. It substantially limits or eliminates our contribution to climate change, creates new high paying jobs, and sets America up to win the future.

I support:

  • the Green New Deal or any variation of it that accomplishes the goals of making sizable investments in renewable energies and positioning America to win the race to a green economy

Health Care

Health Care Is A Human Right

All Americans Deserve The Best Health Care The World Has To Offer

Every year health insurance premiums increase, copays increase, co-insurance increases, and Americans feel less secure that they will be covered if they get sick or injured.

Without the reforms ushered in by the Affordable Care Act — basic mandatory coverages, protections for Americans with pre-existing conditions, and prohibitions against caps on coverage for essential services — most Americans who thought they were covered by insurance would have found out upon getting sick or injured that they weren’t.

Our for-profit health insurance system is ineffective, unethical, and it is the most expensive in the world. It takes a huge bite out of every paycheck Americans receive, and all to support a health care rationing system that benefits only the wealthy.

I support:

  • Medicare for All

As things currently stand, completely unaccountable insurance company executives are placing themselves between Americans and their doctors, and those executives are empowered to veto medical recommendations based on profit motives.

Working together, we can finally end this insanity.

Rebuilding Our Middle Class

The Right To Collectively Bargain In Workplaces Must Be Protected And Expanded

To rebuild the middle class, we need to protect and expand the right to organize workplaces so that workers can collectively bargain with management for better working conditions and pay.

I support:

  • The Protecting the Right to Organize Act

Unions Built The Middle Class

 
 
 
 
 
 

Health Care And Reproductive Freedom

All Americans Deserve Autonomy Over Their Bodies And Reproductive Choices

A woman’s decision about whether to terminate a pregnancy is a health care decision between that woman and her doctor.

 

I support:

  • full autonomy over reproductive choices for all American women