Nothing is more important than making sure our youth are prepared to become effective contributing members of our society. I will be an advocate for our schools in the legislature making sure they have the resources and flexibility they need to provide a first class public education. We need to make sure schools are not only properly funded, but they must first be accountable to their communities, not St. Paul or Washington D.C. I would like to roll back testing and other unnecessary top-down mandates that drive up costs and lower the quality of education. I oppose rigid curriculums such as Common Core.
Taxes / Budget
Minnesota spends too much, and in light of recent large budget surpluses, it is clear that hardworking Minnesotans are being highly overtaxed as well. I would like to see cuts made focusing on the lower and middle income brackets first, along with tax cuts for small businesses that create jobs. Taxes on food and clothing put the largest burden on the poor, yet we consistently see new proposals that would do just that. I will not vote for any budget bill that would create these new taxes. All budget deals should be done cleanly, publicly, without accounting gimmicks or borrowing from our schools.
I want to place our top priority on making sure our roads and bridges are safe and sufficient. Projects must be more forward thinking and allow for future growth in order to prevent even more costly changes in the future. We shouldn't have to tear down bridges to add lanes to a freeway. Transit projects should be revenue neutral, safe, and not have a negative impact on the environment.
Between lost applications, long waits, and receiving fines from the federal government, MNsure has such a disaster even those that supported it are wanting to make changes. We need to dismantle MNsure and apply for a federal waiver so we can get more affordable coverage for hardworking Minnesotans. Premiums and deductibles are both too high, and by getting rid of unnecessary mandates and excessive coverages, and allow what you want and need.
Families / Children
We cannot stop fighting to protect life. With that I supporter easier access to contraceptives and the morning-after pill so unwanted pregnancies don’t happen in the first place. We also need to provide for greater protection and oversight for children in the foster-care system and make it easier for them to find a “Forever-Home”.
Criminal Justice Reform
We need to make sure our justice system is not unfairly biased against people of color. The color of your skin should not impact the odds you are convicted of a crime, nor its penalties. I believe we do need to look at making it easier for those who have served their time to become contributing members of society by allowing them to vote and creating an environment where are they are able to find jobs. Failure to do so will continue to create a dangerous and expensive circle of incarceration and crime.
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