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Principles

You Have a Voice

Indiana’s 9th District needs someone who isn’t afraid to speak out against corruption in Washington and in big business. And Indiana needs someone who will be a voice in Congress for everyone
- not just a select few.

I have spent my life providing a voice to the voiceless. Throughout my career I’ve represented hundreds of individuals - workers, minorities, students, veterans, police officers, inmates, children, senior citizens, refugees, and more - against powerful corporate and government interests.

Now I’m ready to represent you in Congress.

We may not agree on every issue, but my pledge is that I will listen to you, I will carry your concerns back to Washington, and I will help you make your voice heard.

A Right to Healthcare

I believe that healthcare is a fundamental human right, not a luxury good for a privileged few. Our for-profit health care system is broken. And while the Affordable Care Act was an improvement for many people, it still places too heavy a burden on the middle class while protecting the wealthy. GOP proposals to “repeal and replace” the ACA are just tax breaks for the wealthy in disguise, and would make things even worse. The simple fact of the matter is: Americans cannot truly be free when their healthcare is tied to an employer, or when their lives depend on the profit margins of giant corporations.

Every other advanced nation in the world - including nations which Americans have supported with our tax dollars - guarantees health care for all of its citizens. And every one of those nations have better health outcomes, including infant mortality, maternal mortality, and overall life expectancy. Not one of these countries would require its citizens to ruin their financial futures just for the privilege of staying alive. But here in the United States, we still can’t even find out what we will pay for a service before we receive it, and middle-class families go bankrupt from medical debt every day. That’s unacceptable, and we cannot tolerate it any longer.

We all have a stake in maintaining the health of our families, our neighbors, and our country. If I am fortunate enough to serve you, I will work toward legislation to guarantee affordable, transparent, comprehensive health care for all Americans.

Bringing Back the Middle Class

Career politicians of both parties have been trying for 40 years to sell the idea that if we just help the rich get even richer, we’ll all get better. That’s a lie. And this lie is killing the middle class, pushing more and more people into what we call the “working poor.”

There should be no such thing as the “working poor.” No working person should be poor - period. And in the wealthiest country in the world, there is no reason that any person should go without adequate food or housing.

Occupations which were springboards into the middle class have had their wages and benefits slashed by the diminishing power of unions and collective bargaining. Wages and savings are at an all-time low, and pensions are practically a thing of the past. America is the only industrialized nation in the world that doesn’t offer paid maternity and sick leave. Working people are just one illness, one accident, one family tragedy away from total financial ruin.

All this for what? To make the rich even richer. While tax breaks and laissez-faire economic policy has led to record profits for the biggest corporations every year, the middle class is still dying. Education has become too expensive to be a meaningful option for many working people who want to improve their station in life. And the billionaire class that now owns Washington wants to do away with Social Security and Medicare - the last remaining safe havens for America’s workers.

The backbone of a vibrant economy has always been the middle class. And our middle class here in Indiana must be permitted to organize, paid a fair wage, given the opportunity to invest, and empowered to support their families with more than just a paycheck. We have to make some drastic changes if this is going to happen.

As your representative, I will work tirelessly to be a voice for all Hoosiers, and not just champion the pet issues of special interests and the wealthy. I will fight for paid leave, a living wage, affordable education, and stable options for retirement. Together, we will ensure that no Hoosier - and no American - has to live in poverty.

Justice for All

I believe that America’s promise of “justice for all” should mean that no matter who you are, you should be treated with dignity and given equal access to the abundant opportunities available to Americans. No one should suffer discrimination based upon their race, gender, religion, sexuality, disability, or nationality. There should not be separate justice systems for people of different races. There should not be separate rules for the wealthy and for everyone else. Our children, siblings, and parents with addiction issues should not be treated like common criminals and left to die in horrifically, unnecessarily violent prison systems. People who are patients in one state should not be criminals in another, just because of their choice of medication. Those who have broken the law and served their time should be given a path back to equal citizenship and equal dignity. And those who have escaped extreme poverty and corruption in their homelands should be given a chance to provide for their families and make a better life here.

As a civil rights lawyer, I have made a career of serving individuals whose rights have been compromised by the government and by powerful corporate interests. As your voice in D.C., I will be there to fight to ensure that you, your family, your neighbors, and your friends have equal access to the tools and opportunities you need to live your best lives.

Truth Matters

In this age of “alternative facts,” our elected leaders routinely deny the truth in order to forward their own agendas, rather than the best interests of voters. For decades, career politicians have scared workers with lies about social issues, all while stealing their job options, their wages, their pensions, and their futures. Americans have been taught that they should focus on the welfare recipient, the single mother, the immigrant, or the drug addict who takes their dime, while ignoring corrupt billionaires who take their whole wallet.

I believe that Indiana’s 9th District needs representation that values data, analysis, real science, and real facts. Hoosiers need a representative who knows that climate change isn’t a myth, and that that the destruction of our environment is a real threat that needs to be addressed. We need someone who isn’t afraid of technological innovation, but who embraces it as the way of the future, using it to create new industries, jobs, and improved standards of living. We need a representative who respects the right of all people to make their own medical decisions, and who wants people to have the best education possible so they can make those decisions in an informed way. We need a representative who, instead of antagonizing news outlets or favoring biased sources, works with the media in an effort to be transparent. And we need a representative with integrity; someone who can’t be sold to the highest bidder, and someone who will look at the relevant facts, data, and expert opinions before making a decision based on political gain.

Hold them Accountable

Too often, people in power are tangled up with foreign interests, big corporations, and Wall Street. Politicians, many of whom have never set foot in Indiana, make decisions that affect our everyday lives from hundreds of miles away. That’s not good for America, and it’s not good for Indiana. Our elected representative needs to be a Hoosier who is ready, willing, and able to go to bat for other Hoosiers.

Party politics has always been a dirty business, and there’s plenty of blame to go around. We should aspire to making major structural changes to reform the way campaigns are financed, the way districts are gerrymandered, and the two-party system overall. But in the short run, a single party in control of Washington - especially a party run by the wealthiest people in history - stinks of corruption. Regardless of what you think about the Commander-in-Chief, checks and balances are critical to a healthy democracy. If no one is there to hold a reckless class of billionaires accountable, we are all in danger.

Now more than ever, it’s critical to have someone in Washington who knows how to represent people against power. It’s critical to choose someone who will protect the integrity of our government - someone who’s not a career politician, not in the pocket of any corporation, and who cannot be bought and sold. And it’s critical to have someone who has spent enough time in this District to know the unique and diverse challenges faced by the people here. I’ve spent my career taking on corruption and big business, and making sure that powerful institutions are held accountable when they’ve done something wrong. I’ll do the same in Washington.

Policies

In the coming weeks, I will be releasing detailed policy statements that will appear on CanonForIndiana.com. Please click here and sign up to be notified when new policies go live. If you have a specific question or an issue you do not see addressed here, please email info@CanonForIndiana.com.

I fully understand and recognize that these goals will not be achieved overnight. But I believe they are achievable. We have to start with a vision of what we want for America 25 years or more in the future and have a clear plan for how we intend to get there. Real change starts with the belief that a better country is possible, and the will to start working on it together. We can never make these ideas mainstream, we can never convince anyone that these ideas are right, if we keep treating them like pipe dreams ourselves. We can be incremental in our methods, but we must be revolutionary in our aspirations.

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