Single-Payer Healthcare for All
Our profit-driven healthcare industry leaves millions uninsured. We are the wealthiest industrialized nation in the world that does not guarantee Universal Healthcare. Over 70% of people across this nation support Medicare for All, a single-payer healthcare system that will guarantee no one is left uninsured. It will provide preventative care from birth and save lives. A single-payer system puts healthcare in the hands of patient and doctor, taking the profit-driven health insurance companies out of the decision-making process. I support a Medicare for All Bill that will guarantee healthcare as a human right, prioritize health over the profits of the eliminate the insurance industry from the delivery from healthcare and health system monopolies.
We also must increase opportunities in the healthcare industry, to ensure that patients’ healthcare needs are met. This requires increasing our investment in STEM education and encouraging the pursuit of healthcare sciences, to improve access to healthcare services in rural areas. We also must eliminate harmful state certificate-of-need laws which restrict competition, increase market share concentration, limit access to care, and raise the cost of care. I will pursue these actions so that healthcare is available when patients need it.
Tuition Free College & Training
Higher education is an essential component of any civilized and productive society. The right to pursue higher education should be available to all without burdensome student debt.. We must pass legislation that makes trade schools, public colleges, and universities tuition-free. Ensuring training and education to everyone is the best way to strengthen our economy and combat systemic poverty. Education and training should be a priority in our national budget, to ensure a secure future for everyone.
Our government has responsibilities to our citizens and to immigrants under both US and International law. All too often, our leaders have neglected or breached these obligations, subjecting it to lawsuits and international sanctions which unnecessarily cost taxpayers millions each year. Our government also pays millions to private corporations to house refugees, rather than processing them as required by law. Texas is one of several states which are home to a high population of undocumented immigrants, and most play a crucial role in our state’s economic vitality. Many are subjected to horrible working conditions, abuse, discrimination, and the lowest pay among all Texans. I will work to pass legislation that gives undocumented immigrants a clear pathway to citizenship. I also will push for the simplification of the immigration process and ending immigration waitlists.
Texas’ voter registration process is outdated and discriminatory in nature. Waiting periods, inconvenient registration processes and unnecessary ID requirements discourage some potential voters from participating in the electoral process. We need to implement automatic voter registration with no waiting period. I will also work to expand the Voter Rights Act to include permanent residents, DACA recipients, undocumented parents or guardians of citizen minors and restore the rights of convicted felons. Every person who contributes to our state’s and countries vitality should be allowed to vote.
There is still much work to be done in regard to protecting Women’s Rights and LGBTQ Rights. When elected, I will relentlessly press for legislation that prevents discrimination against individuals due to their sexual orientation and/or gender identity. We also must increase efforts at the federal level and state level to ratify the Equal Rights Amendment. I support the right of women to have autonomy over their own bodies and make choices in regards to their pregnancy that are suitable to their situation and needs. I support the pay equity, expanding the Violence Against Women Act, Family Violence Prevention and Services Act, expand and protect reproductive rights, and support Supreme Court Justice nominees who will uphold Roe v. Wade.
Renewable Energy, Sustainable Infrastructure, and Environmental Justice
Environmental threats are a consequence of developed nations. Our nation recognized this early in the 20th Century, as manufacturing increased the production of waste and harmful byproducts. Industry lobbyists resisted efforts to protect our communities and our air, land, and waters. Finally, Congress passed the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), which resulted in the Environmental Protection Agency. Industry efforts to escape environmental regulations have contributed to a perilous condition that now threatens life around the world.
We must hold the fossil fuel industry accountable for the damage they have already caused and demand investment in alternative energy sources. In a country as large and wealthy as the United States, we have to change the way we build our communities and minimize the impact our decisions have on our environment. Other countries already have achieved this, and yet the energy industry insists that our people and our economy are incapable of change. This is insulting. We have technology and the ability to make the transition to renewable energy and build sustainable infrastructure to achieve energy independence and withstand the effects of global warming, while creating jobs in the public sector.
Criminal Justice Reform
The United States’ criminal justice system is fueled more by profit than by justice. It’s time to overturn laws that incentivize revolving-door prison policies. The Zero-Tolerance bills of the 1990s were a trojan horse for an ever-growing for-profit prison system. Too many are locked up solely because they don’t have the ability to pay exorbitant court costs and legal fees. Strict sentencing guidelines have turned petty crimes into life-sentences of poverty. Individuals of low socioeconomic status are incarcerated at a disproportionate rate, and the corporate for-profit prison system has expanded as a result. This costs taxpayers far more money than would rehabilitation and alternative programs such as community service.
Additionally, the private prison system has proven itself to be corrupt and ineffective. Prisoners who are sent to privately-run institutions are subjected to horrible living conditions, abuse by staff, and human rights violations. Private prisons should cease to exist. I will work to eliminate the role of private corporations in criminal justice and return control to the courts.
The most important issue, however, is combating police brutality and the targeting of African-Americans. Police violence against minorities has increased each year, as law enforcement becomes more and more militarized. All law enforcement personnel should undergo racial sensitivity training and de-escalation training before they are handed a badge and a weapon. They should be trained to protect – not attack – those suffering from mental illness. Any officer who targets racial minorities or using unnecessary force must be terminated immediately, with no exceptions.
At this point, science has continually proven that the consumption of marijuana produces no adverse effects on individual health. In fact, marijuana is an excellent pain reliever and can be used for a variety of medical purposes. I support the decriminalization and subsequent legalization of marijuana throughout the United States. No one should be thrown in jail for smoking a joint, and no cancer patient should be subject to prosecution for using marijuana to relieve pain. Legalization would bring in tax revenue and help to restrict the power of massive pharmaceutical companies, who only care about profit margins.
Cessation of Militarization
The United States is home to one of the most powerful military in the world. We have hundreds of military bases across the globe, which we use to constantly intervene in the foreign affairs of other countries without their request for aid. We are long over due for an exit plan to end the wars, bring our troops home, fund transition programs for our veterans form combat to civilian life. Arms sales to nations with corrupt governments should be prohibited. We must work on diplomacy, stop creating conflict and arming terrorist.
Fair Trade Deals
Our trade agreements must be rewritten to be mutually beneficial for all countries involved. NAFTA resulted in a loss of American jobs and stagnated or reduced wages. The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) – the reformed NAFTA – offers some improvements, such as raising wages in Mexico, but keeps US wages stagnant. Moving from a free trade deal to fair trade deal will include raising the minimum wage to a living wage, increasing environmental protections, improving the standard of working and living conditions, and protecting workers’ right to unionize both here and in trade partner nations.
Native Americans have suffered for over two centuries under U.S. government rule. To this day, Native Americans are treated as second-class citizens. Private corporations prey on the hardship of Native American communities. Representing our indigenous brother and sisters to ensure that their voices are heard in the Senate. We must respect all treaties and Native American rights to their land. We must end the exploitation of Native Americans by corporations and work to preserve generations of culture and identity.