Issues & Priorities
Manufacturing and Engineering Jobs
Bringing jobs back to our district is my top priority. We can do this by recruiting the booming industry of high-tech energy. Texas already leads the nation in wind energy product and in solar energy capability. High-tech energy industries provide thousands of jobs in cities like Abilene, Midland, and San Antonio. This industry will continue to grow in Texas. The only question is where in the state these jobs will be.
We have the skills to build wind turbines and solar panels, and we have the space needed to produce the energy right here in the heart of Texas. My plan will bring 1000s of good paying jobs all over the district - from Rockdale to Waco, from Caldwell to Pflugerville. My plan will revive our local economy and bring back good paying manufacturing, distribution, and engineering jobs.
The biggest problem facing families and businesses is that healthcare premiums continue to rise and deductibles are way too high. It has become obvious that the Republicans in Congress have no clue how to solve this problem. Their plan will only make things worse, especially for those over 50 year old. The current healthcare bill will impose an "age tax" which allows insurance companies to charge older adults five times what younger consumers pay for health insurance. According to the AARP, the age tax could increase annual premiums by $13,000 for anyone over 50.
My solution to this problem is to introduce real competition into the insurance market. Right now, most people are insured by whatever insurer their job offers. Let’s change that by letting YOU pick which company you buy insurance from and have your employer cover the same percentage they do now. This will drive down prices as every insurance company will be competing for your business in a clear and transparent market.
We will also introduce a Public Option for health insurance. We will allow individuals to enroll in Medicare for a price similar to market competitors. This will keep insurance companies from price gouging customers.
And finally, we will allow Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices. Pharmaceutical companies will now have to be competitive when negotiating prices with government programs. No more government handouts, no more price gouging our seniors.
Central Texas Agriculture
Beef cattle, corn, dairy, wheat, and much more, are the bedrock of our economy. Agriculture supports approximately 20% percent of the all employment in our district. And our largest trade partner for central Texas farm products is Mexico. Our nation exports $5 billion in corn, beef, dairy, and wheat to Mexico every year. This is why I agree with the more than 130 food and agriculture organizations that have cautioned against any tariffs placed on our biggest trade partner. Organizations such as the Texas Grain and Feed Association and the National Corn Growers Association have made it clear - a trade war with Mexico will hurt the American farmer.
I oppose any tariffs that make it more difficult for Texas farmers and ranchers to make a living. I believe in growing the Texas economy. Tariffs would move us in the wrong direction
Earning a Livable Wage
Worker productivity has more than doubled since the 1960s. However, wages have not kept up. Today, millions of Americans and thousands of Texans earn less than a livable wage. All of this while CEO salaries have increased more than 1000% in the past 30 years.
I believe no one should have to stay poor so someone else can get rich.
The fact is families cannot make it on $7.25. That is why I support the Raise the Wage Act of 2017 which would increase worker's pay.
But that is not enough. We must protect the rights of workers to bargain for wages. We must ensure all workers are paid according to their skills by fighting payroll fraud. The intentional misclassification of workers has undercut the take home pay of thousands of Texans working for an hourly wage. We must put a stop to this.
Right now, your representatives do not have to be responsive to you. Gerrymandering keeps their jobs safe. Dark money from special interests keep campaign dollars rolling in. And lack of term limits makes fresh ideas a rare thing in Washington, DC. If I’m blessed enough to be elected as your representative, I will do the following:
- Hold in-person town halls across the district
- Work to establish term limits for all members of Congress.
- Fight to end gerrymandering
- Never take dark money from unnamed donors