BA, Trinity University (Political Science); Masters in Educational Administration, UTA
Show me an 18 billion-dollar fence and I’ll show you a dozen $200 tunnels. A border wall is a white-flag of surrender to the problem of undocumented immigration, and I am not ready to surrender. I teach in an urban school district with a large population of DREAMers. This is the only culture these students have ever known; we need to accept them as the Americans they are. First, by making the passage of a clean DREAM Act a priority. Second, via the creation of a panel of experts to study immigration reform, made up of those who practice immigration law, those who enforce it, and those who have been through the current process and are now citizens. The only way to get compassionate reform is to listen to those with practical experience.
In 1914 a Serbian terrorist murdered an Austrian aristocrat and his wife in Bosnia. The death of two foreigners, in a foreign land, for a foreign cause, led directly to hundreds of thousands of American casualties and ended the era of practical isolationism forever. We ignored this to the world’s grief in 1939; we cannot afford to ignore it today. Our military is made up of precious American lives; we should deploy them only after diplomatic and economic tools failed. With North Korea, I do not feel we have exhausted our arsenal of diplomatic and economic tools, particularly regarding Chinese intervention; I also would advocate most strongly for a return to stable, sane rhetoric regarding this situation.
We must protect and stabilize Social Security/Medicare. This begins with combating efforts to privatize either program; in the realm of public education, we have seen the systemic failures of privatization efforts, failure awaiting similar efforts for entitlement programs. Once privatized, I fear we would see Social Security and Medicare become less of a social safety net and more of a profit-making machine enriching anyone other than those who need the programs most. To ensure Social Security is around for the next generation, Congress should immediately raise the salary cap on contributions. That way, we correct the problem on the front end by bringing in more revenue and avoid reliance on complicated formulas to determine payouts.
In my district, almost 60,000 people would lose health insurance if the Affordable Care Act is repealed; I am ashamed to say that our current representative gave full-throated support to repeal. Moving forward, we need to not only strengthen and reform the Affordable Care Act to make it more efficient and more affordable, but we need to also look ahead to what is next. A single-payer system is the destiny of the American healthcare market. We are moving in that direction, and I believe within ten years we will fully arrive at a version of the single-payer plan championed by Senator Bernie Sanders.
Reforming the bureaucratic train wreck of the Veteran’s Administration is a pressing issue. Over and over, I’ve heard veterans say they or someone they knew was either turned away by the VA or had the life-saving care they need delayed by inefficiency. Until this nation has reformed our Veteran Care system into the envy of the world, we should allow veterans to seek service from civilian providers, with the tab picked up by the VA. From 2010-2014, 29,000 veterans committed suicide (20 a day). Wouldn't the billions of dollars President Trump wants to spend on a border wall be better spent on making sure that every VA Hospital has an attached "Mental Health ER" designed to identify and treat suicide risks among our veteran population?
University of North Texas, Bachelor of Administration ("BBA"), Major: Finance.
The current undocumented residents will have to submit for a Visa, which is normal practice. As for the wall along the southern border, the cost will have to be funded through the U. S. Congress and not taxpayers, for it addresses a structural improvement for safety.
The United States should only enter a foreign conflict, when the United States or its Allies are threatened, and under a Congressional Declaration of War. Regarding North Korea, the situation in North Korea probably will not escalate until South Korea is invaded. Therefore, I support the policy of caution and military readiness to defend against missile attack and naval invasion.
The Consumer Price Index is commonly used to gauge what the cost of living looks like at present and in the past. Finding the rate of change could be done through a moving average, along with the change in rate of population growth or decline to consider. Once the variables are plugged into the equation, the estimated cost will be appropriated through Congress. The budget deficits are handled through appropriations. It is important to understand why our civilization exists at all; and it is due to having raw resources, from mountain ranges, to mine and create products, physical structure, etc. Otherwise, the monetary means of exchange would be under the effects of other countries that "do" have mountain ranges and resources.
The removal of taxing the practice of medicine or medicine received will reduce medical costs. What these particular taxes currently fund will have to be addressed with direct Congressional appropriations, for the real demand and need, as well as audited.
"Domestic Terrorism by Satellite and Wireless Cellular Tower Surveillance" is a major concern these days, with most people in the dark concerning the crime. My greatest challenge is to get information in the hands of the voting population that I am running for office and will provide to each one of the voters something that has yet to be provided by anyone in law enforcement or elected officials, to my knowledge: "Access to the government satellite and wireless cellular tower surveillance networks to obtain a copy his or her account, if there, and all information concerning the account, upon request to present during a court hearing to cover probable cause for an immediate arrest warrant to be issued."
B.A. Southern Nazarene University, Honorary Doctorate Southern Nazarene University
I believe that the primary focus of our immigration policy should be on securing the border and enforcing the existing law while putting the American worker first. I will continue to push for the resources Texas needs to secure the border, a quicker response process to remove individuals who should not be here, and enforcement measures including a physical barrier, technology enhancements, and legislation to prevent illegal entries.
Our greatest threat comes from the North Korean dictatorship of Kim Jong-un. His regime's ballistic missile tests are a destabilizing force for regional security and peace, and recent tests have demonstrated increased payloads and range. The US must respond in a variety of forms---most recently, Congress approved $4 billion in new missile defense funding. These funds are needed to bolster our missile defense efforts to ensure the continued safety of our citizens and as a check against North Korea's ballistic missile program. The US must also ensure that recently approved UN sanctions against North Korea are enforced. Our administration has worked this year to cut-off North Korean revenue sources while improving our own defensive posture.
One of my top priorities is to preserve and strengthen our Social Security system for future generations. I support legislative measures to protect Social Security beneficiaries, encourage private pension savings for future beneficiaries through tax incentives, and over time raise the age at which benefits can be drawn while not affecting those at or close to retirement. Modernization of the program must not break the obligations to current retirees or to those near retirement. These measures are necessary to maintain integrity of and strengthen the foundation of the Social Security program. In addition, I favor means testing Social Security benefits for the wealthiest recipients.
Obamacare should be repealed and replaced by market-oriented policies that put heath care decisions in the hands of patients and doctors, not federal bureaucrats. Our nation does need insurance reform but it can be accomplished in a way that addresses the problems with our health care system instead of exacerbating them the way that Obamacare does. In December 2017, Congress passed meaningful legislation to repeal the heart of Obamacare, the individual mandate. I will continue work with my colleagues for a true patient-centered health care bill.
As America’s number one exporter, Texas is a prime beneficiary of American trade agreements. Look no further than North Texas to view the positive economic impact of America’s trade relationships on our local businesses. NAFTA and other agreements were created with the goal of removing barriers to trade, increasing opportunity and providing a common market for goods and services throughout North America and other regions. I support free-trade agreements, but as President Trump has stated, they must also be fair-trade agreements.
Texas Tech, BA in Journalism/PR
Undergrad and grad level courses in Accounting and Business at UTD
The Dreamers should have a clear path to citizenship. It’s the right thing to do, plus we have invested for years in their education, so it would be foolish to deport them now, when they can fully contribute to our economy.
Anyone here illegally who is convicted of a violent crime should be deported.
For others, we benefit daily from their work. And by sharing their culture they enrich our diverse tapestry. People in countries less fortunate than ours are trying to do what’s best for their families, as we all do. They would rather enter the country legally, and that should be a viable option.
Families should be kept together, not torn apart. I oppose a border wall. Our country should be symbolized by the Statue of Liberty, not a wall.
Our armed forces should only be used as a last resort, to repel an existential threat to our country.
We should use our intelligence capabilities, our money, and our expertise to pressure adversaries, not our young men and women in uniform. Also, whenever armed forces are to be deployed, a calculation must be made of the expected costs of treating those service members who will inevitably come home with long-term injuries. That amount of money must be appropriated to the VA before the troops are sent. Just saying we support our troops is not enough.
In Korea, diplomacy must be our first line of defense. Our currently decimated State Department is endangering our nation.
No, I oppose changes to Social Security and Medicare. The basic equation of a profit and loss statement is: revenues minus expenses equal net profit or loss. So a deficit (net loss) can be reduced either by reducing expenses or by increasing revenues. I favor what I call bubble up economics. If people at lower income levels had a living wage, a good public education, and affordable healthcare and housing, they would be able to spend more money in the economy. Businesses would have more customers, and would thus need to hire more workers. More economic activity would generate more taxes, and there would be less need for government assistance, thus also simultaneously decreasing expenses. That’s why we all do better when we ALL do better.
Healthcare is a right of every person, not a privilege for those able to afford it. By whatever name or means necessary, healthcare for all must become a reality in our nation. It is appalling for the United States to be the only very highly developed nation in the world without universal healthcare. Studies have shown that we spend more and achieve poorer outcomes than other developed nations. That must change.
Until we achieve universal healthcare, I strongly support the Affordable Care Act, and oppose efforts to undermine or repeal it. One important feature of the ACA is providing routine preventive medicine at no out-of-pocket cost. That allows problems to be detected early, when they can be treated more effectively and at lower costs.
We have an enormous opportunity, challenge, and necessity to begin an exciting transition from being a nation driven by fossil fuels to being one powered by solar and wind energy. As in the 1800s, when the Transcontinental Railroad was built, and the 1960s, when we worked to put a man on the moon, our national efforts in this century can and must be directed toward this goal.
As we encourage STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education, our clean energy revolution will provide the millions of new jobs to put those STEM graduates into great careers.
Now that I have three young grandchildren, I’m more determined than ever to safeguard the health and sustainability of our planet.
B.F.A. Theatre Arts
All from the University of Texas at Arlington.
The DREAM Act needs to be passed as soon as possible. In fact, I hope that it is done before I get to Congress. Children brought to this country through no fault of their own, who are contributing members of society and do not have a criminal record, should be allowed a path to citizenship. We have already invested so much time, effort, and money into these children, it is beneficial to both them and us to allow them to continue being contributing members of this great society.
On top of that, expanding guest worker programs, streamlining the immigration process, and addressing non-economic reasons for illegal immigration (e.g. war) is how we begin to improve our broken system.
I do not support the border wall.
The military is an important part of our diplomacy that certainly cannot be ignored, but must never be misused. Only when all other options are exhausted, and/or there is an imminent threat to the safety of the US or mankind, should we use military intervention. We must use our tools of diplomacy, like trade, aide, sanctions, and leverage our international community to find resolution.
When it comes to North Korea, we must use our tools of diplomacy. There is no good military option to use against them. One wrong move could put millions of South Koreans and hundreds of thousands of Americans at risk. Overall, this is a tenuous situation without an easy answer.
I do support changes to these programs in the way of reforms; cuts are not acceptable. There are many ways to accomplish this. One would be that the income cap should be raised to $250,000 to account for wage disparity, but still remain fair. It must also be permanently indexed to inflation so that it keeps up with economic growth. Next, a small increase in the retirement age, a few months to a year, gradually phased in over time can help keep the program in place for generations to come. However, it is imperative that the longevity gap between high and low earners is bridged first. Otherwise, it would be inconceivable to raise the retirement age. Additionally, we can close loopholes in the tax code, specifically carried interest.
I would support any legislation that will lower costs while maintaining the same quality of care. Obamacare can be reformed, but it is too crucial to be repealed and replaced. At the same time, we must work with states to remove unnecessary regulations that keep healthcare professionals from delivering the care that they are trained to deliver. Nurse practitioners and physician’s assistants cannot open their own practice, even though the care may be the same for lower cost. We can also make it easier for Americans to purchase safe, non-narcotic prescription medicines across international borders as long as they are safe and legal in the US.
We have spent over $1 trillion on the war on drugs with very little to show for it, especially with regard to marijuana. While it seemed like we were beginning to move in the right direction on marijuana policy by allowing states to decide for themselves, that progress has been derailed by the Justice Department's recent decision to enforce federal regulations over states' objections. The best option is for Congress to reschedule or deschedule marijuana and allow states the right to choose for themselves. That is why I support the Marijuana Justice Act.
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