Rebuild the Middle Class
If we have a minimum wage that is a living wage adjusted for inflation and strong unions, it is a win-win-win! It is not a debated topic in economics that in the U.S. GDP consumer spending is close to 70% of GDP. This segment of our economy must thrive. In economics there is a powerful market force called the multiplier effect which means when a dollar is spent it is re-spent multiple times to the point that it creates 175% of that dollar in economic activity in a year on average. That same dollar could touch the hands of many businesses and people which all will benefit. A strong middle class creates a healthy economy that enables our poor people to have more opportunities to pull themselves out of poverty and provides stronger markets for business to sell to. The main key to rebuilding the middle class and giving more citizens opportunities to pull themselves out of poverty is wages must rise faster than prices, which we have done in the past. That is how the middle class was created and the only way to raise standard of living from the bottom up. This is possible as we have done it before and how we became the “richest” nation in the world. The math works because no business’s labor costs are 100% of total costs. For example, if a company’s labor costs are 33% of total costs and labor costs go up 3% then total costs have only gone up 1%. Companies only have to raise their prices 1% to maintain their profit margin, thus people have a net 2% more money to spend.
Invest in Education and Jobs for the Future
These two factors are inseparable, an exceptional educational system, focused on areas of present and future needs for everyone, creates jobs and income. The job market is changing as artificial intelligence eliminates more and more jobs. We need to invest in tech infrastructure in the 4th District so we can educate our young people for the tech jobs of our future and attract those tech jobs to our 4th District. We already have great schools in the 4th District but need to support them financially at the federal level to create a more successful future for our residents.
Healthcare for Everyone
Medicare for All is the most expedient way to achieve the health care system we need and deserve for the simple reason we know what it is and how it works. Opponents will not be able to just make things up like death panels or financial disaster. Also, the United States is ranked near the bottom of developed nations in prenatal care, child deaths and maternal care after a birth. This is in large part because many young women don’t have insurance and cannot get proper care. Medicare for all will help stop that and stop the need to close any hospitals that are not performing well financially. Some current Medicare patients are worried that putting everyone else in the system it could harm their own healthcare. By definition, Medicare covers the portion of our population that is the most sick and expensive to care for so putting others in the will be more cost efficient than those already in Medicare. Not to say it won’t be more expensive but our workforce and businesses each pay about 1.45% of income into Medicare, so rounded off to 3%. We should be able to cover the less sick for about the same as the sickest even though there are more in the excluded population, they on average are much less expensive to care for. The current estimate is we pay a minimum of 16% for our income for healthcare. Roughly a 10% savings from what we already pay. Also, Medicare contributions do not have an income cap like Social Security does, so the people at the top of the income scale will pay the same percentage but more dollars into the system. I am not in favor of adding just the age group of 55 to 65 in Medicare as that is the second most expensive group of citizens to provide healthcare for. We need healthy people in the system to help lower the average cost per patient, and the younger generations are the most likely to be without insurance.
If we don’t fix the environment, all I will discuss here will not matter. I pledge to work with the excellent environmental experts in the field both from the 4th District and nationally, to make significant progress in improving the environment we depend on by 2030 at the latest. I will work with the real environmental experts in the 4th District and beyond to solve this fundamental problem. In just the 4th District alone we have real experts at Central Michigan University, Saginaw Valley State University, Ferris State University and others in the private sector who know our local environmental problems and have been and currently are working on ways to solve them right now. As we know, we subsidize corporations to the tune of hundreds of billion of dollars each year. My main policy agenda will be to block all subsidies to any corporation that is not at least a net positive in their impact on the environment. The only way to get a business to listen is through the pocketbook!
Protect and Improve our Social Security
Raise the Social Security income cap, currently $138,900 and income earners stop paying, to a point that makes social security solvent again and also outlaw borrowing social security funds from being used for other purposes. This is not a hard problem to fix but we need representatives who will support it.
Civil Rights, Including LGBTQ, Native American, Women’s Rights and all other Discriminated Groups
All people deserve to live to their full potential in the happiest way, without prejudice or malice towards them. There are laws in place to protect most of our citizens that need to be enforced and improved and, in some instances, created
I support common sense gun policy as championed by Mom’s Demand Action. I do not want to take all weapons away, just some simple, well enforced safety regulations as we do other dangerous machinery.
A strong military is important, I believe every organization is only as good as it’s people and that our troops deserve a solid middle-class income at the least. World Class healthcare and the utmost respect and support after their term is up. Without our brave people who serve we would have no country.