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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Michigan House District 41

Duties: The Michigan House of Representatives shares responsibility with the Michigan Senate to enact new laws and amend or repeal existing laws.Qualifications: State Representatives may serve a maximum of three full terms. They must be at least 21 years of age and a registered voter in their district. There are 110 State House districts which are re-apportioned after each census.Term: 2 years

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    Julie M. Rogers

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    Terry Haines

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    Rafael Wolf

Biographical Information

EDUCATION: What should Michigan do, if anything, to 1) provide an equitable, quality public education for all students and 2) address the shortage of teachers?

ECONOMIC SECURITY: What policies do you support to help Michigan residents improve their economic positions?

ELECTIONS: What state policies do you support regarding Michigan elections, campaign funding and voting rights?

ENVIRONMENT/ENERGY: What actions or policies do you support to protect Michigan’s water, air and land for current and future generations? What is your position on energy efficiency and renewable energy?

SOCIAL JUSTICE: How would you address racial, economic, health and education inequities, including Michigan’s 23% of children and 17% of seniors living in poverty?

GUNS: What steps, if any, should be taken to curb gun violence in our communities?

Campaign Twitter Handle @@vote4rogers
Occupation / Current Position State Representative and Physical Therapist
Education Master’s Degree in Physical Therapy - Marquette University
Qualifications and Experience Current State Rep, Assistant Democratic Floor Leader, Democratic VC for Military, Veterans &Homeland Security Com, Appropriations Com, EGLE Approps sub-com, Financial Services Com, House Dem DEI Com
I was proud to vote for the 2023 state budget which had the largest per pupil funding increase for preK-12 schools in decades. However, I support funding formulas weighted more heavily toward our most vulnerable school districts. Areas with higher proportions of children qualifying for free/reduced lunch generally face more hardships and are not starting from the same level as students from wealthier families.

To address the teacher shortage, we must support teachers by equipping them with the tools and resources they need and stop vilifying them. This means adequately funding schools to retain the hardworking staff who serve our students
Working families are struggling to put food on the table, gas in their cars, and pay for childcare and rent. I support legislation to expand the Earned Income Tax Credit which would give a tax cut for many hard-working Michiganders and help them pay for basics. Medical bills continue to be the #1 cause of bankruptcy in the U.S. Access to affordable healthcare must be prioritized. Prior to COVID-19, we had a housing shortage, but now we have an extreme housing bubble with very few affordable units available. I support thinking creatively with public-private partnerships that can leverage grants and layer them with federal and state support.
I support legislation that makes voting easier and supports residents’ freedom to vote. This term, I introduced HB 5945 which would provide an online option for absentee voting applications. I have also co-sponsored numerous bills to enhance voting. Your voice is your vote. Our democracy is under attack, and I will oppose any efforts to make voting more difficult for residents. Access to safe, secure elections which are free from intimidation tactics are critical to ensuring residents can choose their candidate.
Environmental protection is critical. Right here in Kalamazoo, a company operating the Morrow Dam lowered water levels to make repairs and discharged 400,000 cubic yards of sludge downstream, damaging our ecosystem and wildlife. I introduced HB 5661, which would amend the Michigan Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act to give the Michigan Dept. of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy emergency powers when inland lakes and streams are threatened. I also voted for SB 565, a large water infrastructure package for lead pipeline replacement; repairs for dams, roads and bridges; and PFAS clean-up. We need to invest in more renewables.
Everyone deserves access to affordable healthcare. I will continue to fight for reproductive freedom for all people. Residents of 49007 have been disproportionately affected by higher levels of lead exposure. Last year, my team and I knocked on 10,000 doors to speak to families about lead poisoning prevention. I’ve fought for additional funding in our state budget to address this critical issue that impacts health. Food deserts are another inequity. I introduced HB 5656, with bipartisan support. This bill extends the Michigan Strategic Fund Act and allows grants for neighborhood food initiatives to increase fresh produce in underserved area
I am very concerned about the recent increase in violence in Kalamazoo. I serve as a member of the Firearm Safety and Violence Prevention Legislative Caucus. We’ve introduced numerous bills, many of which I have co-sponsored, aimed at reducing firearm violence and increasing safety. One of the areas with significant bipartisan support has been “red flag” legislation which allows for temporary removal of firearms when an individual presents a danger to themselves or others. The majority of residents support common sense reforms. Unfortunately, none of the bills introduced this term on this topic have received a committee hearing.
Campaign Twitter Handle @TCT_Pioneer
Occupation / Current Position Retired
Education BS from Central Michigan University
Qualifications and Experience I have thirty years of involvement in politics. I gave been to the vast majority of state conventions in that time. I seriously promote the Convention of States.
The reason teachers are leaving is because they are micromanaged, usually at the federal level. They can't teach because they can't adapt to the needs or level of the students in their class. They are told what to teach, whether the students understand the teaching or not. Get rid of common core, which even Bill Gates says is a failure. Bring power for the curriculum back to the state and the localities. Allow the teachers to teach to the best of their abilities and according to the needs of the students. Many teachers are leaving because they feel the classroom has become an indoctrination center for philosophies to which they do not cling.
I believe in the "invisible hand" of free enterprise, from the book by Adam Smith called The Wealth of Nations. Except for maintaining safety and a healthy environment, the government has little need to be involved in a company's enterprise. More government almost always means a poorer economy. The government should not be involved in choosing winners and losers.
Machines should create two paper copies of every vote. Both copies should be inspected by the voter to make sure they both have correctly registered their vote. One copy goes home with the voter. One copy is kept at the voting polls and later permanently by local authorities. In the case of a voting dispute, the paper copies should be used for the counts. The "chain of custody" must be very strict, with provable record of who gives and receives the ballot at each point. The machines must not be able to accept the internet during voting hours.
I have Michigan's best plan to lower gas prices and enhance the environment in that specific issue. See the details at my web site, I will support conditions and policies that improve our environment. What is usually the least expensive can be made clean. Energy being expensive is NOT an indicator of our nobility and moral superiority. We can be green and still use abundant, available and inexpensive fuels and energy sources.
There will always be inequities in income. Inflation, caused by federal overspending, and inflation caused by the Federal Reserve making us pay interest to have access to our own money supply, are ruining our economy. At a state level, this can be dealt with by promoting the Convention of States referendum. At a state level, the goal should be equal access to economic opportunity, not the enforcement of equal results. I will promote policies that give equal access to all, such as charter school freedom and the elimination of federal control of our education. Advance the Convention of States!
Criminals do not follow the current laws. Why do we think that restricting the freedoms of the innocent will bring good results? I recommend guns being worn by the teachers and administrators of schools. Putting a "gun free zone" area anywhere promotes the violent to find and attack in these areas. I recommend universal concealed carry for Michigan.
Occupation / Current Position IT Consulting
Education BS, BRE
Qualifications and Experience Education, reading, listening, and knowing how government should work
Why can’t 50% of U.S. adults read a book written at the 8th- grade level? Michigan's average high school graduation rate is 89%, which means 39% of students were advanced through their education with an inadequate literacy skill set, regardless of funding increases. The answer is simple across the board - fund education with qualified teachers, have specially designed course material, and small class sizes. This is not an original thought as noted in the written essay below. During WWII, the military used a similar method to remediate the masses of illiterate recruits. I have written about this here:
This question paints economics with a broad brush. "Economic security” is a myth - there is no such thing. I expound upon it here: Democratic candidates typically push for corporate welfare to boost economic development through “public-private partnerships," a practice which funds the ruling class, allowing high level connections to give money and opportunity to Michigan oligarchs who receive a competitive market advantage through tax payer transfers of wealth upward. Michigan needs a streamlined administrative state with low taxation so citizens can retain more of their own wealth.
This discussion is esoteric, and the solutions presented by typical politicians remains equally antiquated. The Republican-Democratic duopoly uses issues like this to divide and conquer its constituents in an ongoing struggle to encourage the “right kind of voter” to vote. I do not believe it is interested in offering everyone the opportunity to vote, thereby maintaining monopoly power on government. Michigan could benefit from adopting a system similar to the Estonian digital election system that uses a strong identity document to allow for secure remote signing and legally binding digital signatures - overall, an easy problem to solve.
I discuss in great detail my thoughts on climate change and environmentalism here: In short, I know very few politicians that know much about these topic in depth. You hear rhetoric about solar panels, wind turbines, alternative forms of propulsion, an amazing new future of undiscovered energy sources, hydroelectric power, etc. - green industrial capitalist propaganda. Many politicians are "salesmen" for Chinese solar panel companies. The only “green,” minimally carbon-producing renewable resource that can fuel Michigan is nuclear power. Unfortunately, it is inconvenient, and certainly has risks, as noted in the essay.
Inequity is simply defined as “a lack of fairness or justice.” Establishment, duopoly candidates have historically promoted the value of inequitable policy. Why do you think there continues to be so much inequity? Because the masses have voted to maintain it. The discussion of public-private partnerships prefers one well connected group over another, which is not fair. We live in a bifurcated social system which has one set of rules for the wealthy, and another, often harsher set of punishments, for the middle class and poor. You will get more of the same voting for the establishment. (Review the tax essay for more information.)
I have written extensively about gun violence because it is important to so many people and grossly misunderstood by political candidates of all stripes. The in-depth essay can be found here: Like many other issues, gun policy debate can be used as a political weapon. Most people do not even realize that suicide accounts for a larger percentage of gun deaths than mass murder. The issues surrounding gun violence are in large part associated with healthcare (lack of mental health) and socioeconomic systems in America. Rational sane adults with stability in their lives do not murder others, nor do they commit suicide.