On the Issues
I’m a different kind of candidate. I’m going to tell you what I believe, how I feel and where I stand on important issues with candor and honesty. I believe we deserve authenticity from those we send to Washington. I’m here to listen to the people of this district and I am committed to addressing and solving the problems important to us. I enter this race with the core beliefs that government should be limited and effective, that control and decisions made locally – closer to where people live and work – usually results in the best solutions, and that spending should be restrained. I also believe deeply that we need to restore civility and respect to the political process. Americans of goodwill have to talk to each other and collaborate with one another to solve our problems and move our country forward.
I believe in putting people first — not politics. I believe that how we govern and how we speak to one another matters. I believe that civility matters: if you start with that foundation then the public policies you create will treat people right.
We need to get the government off the backs of our businesses, and out of our lives. Where our lives do intersect with government it needs to be lean, efficient and effective. It should also be innovative, nimble and responsive to the needs of citizens. But mostly, government needs to allow us to live our lives with the full freedom and independence afforded us under the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
Governing decisions should most often be made at the local level. Bureaucrats in Washington — and Austin — don’t have all of the answers. In fact, politicians at any level often don’t have good answers, period, and usually they just make things more complicated. That’s one of the reasons we need more representation in Congress from real people who aren’t career politicians. And, we need to return to local control as the 10th Amendment intended.
I believe in a strong system of public education because education is the great equalizer. I was privileged to experience education in private, public, and home school settings, and I’m grateful that I had parents willing to find the best options for my education. Wherever schools are failing, we need to infuse accountability, competition and choice in the system so parents can find the best option for their children.
Our national debt is out of control. A lack of fiscal discipline from both Democrats and Republicans has put us in an unstable and unsustainable position. With more than $60,000 in national debt per every man, woman and child, the days of avoiding hard conversations about government spending are over. Because this debt is a threat to our national security, our prosperity, and our leadership in the world we need to root out waste, reduce the size of government, reform entitlements, and live within our means.
Strengthening Small Business
Small businesses are the backbone of our economy. Period. Those willing to take risks – every innovator, entrepreneur, investor and family business – are the ones creating jobs and fueling prosperity, not government. But government too often stifles them with red tape, taxes and regulations that make it hard to start up and stay in business. Right now, businesses on Wall Street are doing fine. I am concerned about small businesses on Main Street. Let’s get government out of the way of economic growth so these businesses can succeed.
Strengthen our National Defense
Protecting American citizens is the most important job of the Federal Government. Our military must be funded and trained such that any threat – hostile governments, terrorists, and those who seek to do our country harm – can be instantly eliminated. But we must also acknowledge that the military is one of the largest expenses our federal government makes, so we must not be afraid to also root out waste and inefficiency both by those within government and in the contractors the government hires.
Words without actions are meaningless – and I want to fight to bring some long overdue action to accompany the words “thank you for your service.” A good start is ensuring access to quality healthcare, higher education and fixing what’s broken with the Veteran’s Administration.
Fortifying Border Security
America must enforce her borders. We need to increase operational capacity at our borders and within the country using technology and additional boots on the ground to detect, deter and apprehend trafficking organizations that smuggle people, weapons and drugs.
Fixing Our Broken Immigration System
To grow, we must do as America has done since its founding – encourage legal immigration for those who are ready, willing and able to contribute to the American experiment. We need to enforce the laws on the books. It is unfair for those who have gone through the immigration system legally to have people “jump the line” and be rewarded for their illegal behavior. Further, we have an obligation to ensure that those coming here increase our prosperity and security, not diminish them. But we must also have an honest conversation about the drivers of illegal immigration that are attracting people to our country. The bottom line is that we have to fix our broken immigration system that Washington has allowed to devolve into chaos.
American Leadership in the World
America must provide global leadership – and do so in a manner that honors our founding principles. This leadership comes through diplomacy backed up with military and economic strength. History tells us dictators and oppressors are less likely to trifle with an America that projects strength, and takes a forward-leaning approach to solving the world’s problems. Eight years of weakness have invited despots from Russia to the Middle East to engage in hostilities largely free of consequence. It is time for that to change.
The United States shares a special relationship with Israel. The ties between our nations, including shared values and a commitment to defeat violent Islamic extremism will forever link our two nations. Our economic and military partnership benefits both the United States and Israel, and is a source of prosperity, innovation and strength. Together our nations, along with other allies in the region, will create a world of peace, and America should be at the forefront of that effort alongside our ally Israel.
A Culture of Life
I’m pro-life and I believe in a culture of life. That includes treating every man, woman and child with dignity and respect. To me, being pro-life means more than just being against abortion. It means ensuring that children are protected and cared for after, as well as before, they are born. I also believe we need to change the dialogue on the emotional and divisive issue of abortion. I will seek to find common ground so we can work together to reduce unintended pregnancies, including implementing evidence-based policies that can help reduce them.
Nothing should be more important for members of Congress than to engage meaningfully with their constituents. The United States is a representative democracy. We should never forget – and I will never forget – that Congress works for the people. I will use both tried and true, as well as new and innovative ways, to listen to you and to be responsive to your needs and priorities.