Without the healthcare we need, we do not have the opportunity we need - opportunities to work and learn and provide financial security to our families.
I believe that quality healthcare is a human right. Ensuring that every person in Arkansas’s 2nd District and beyond has access to affordable, quality healthcare is not only an ethical issue, it propels our society forward.
No one should forgo medical treatment or prescription medication due to cost. The system is broken when pharmaceutical companies can price gauge life-saving medications and hospital billing increases without oversight. More and more people are locked out of employer-based healthcare because they work in the growing gig economy or for employers that work employees just up to 39 hours a week to avoid providing health insurance. A system that not tied to employment will give more Americans the security to take risks such as starting small businesses.
I am an advocate for choice in healthcare. As a woman, I understand the specific health needs of women and I a am an advocate for choice. Decisions about a women’s reproductive care, including abortion, should be between a women, her family, and her doctor.
Quality healthcare is a human right. Investing in healthcare creates healthy and happy citizens that will propel our society forward. Once in Congress, health care will be my top priority. I will fight to ensure that more people are covered, expenses are lowered, and coverage is equitable and accessible. Medicare, Medicaid, and Medicaid Expansion must be preserved and mental and behavioral health coverage should be accessible and affordable.
I believe in public education that offers everyone a debt-free opportunity to succeed. This involves funding universal pre-K and the best possible K-12 schools in every neighborhood.
Every child deserves access to quality early childhood education opportunities in their own neighborhood. All parents deserve the opportunity to provide for their children and ensure they are prepared for Kindergarten and beyond.
As a public school teacher, I have seen the differences in school as close together as 2 miles. I have seen the drastic difference in per-pupil spending at schools in neighboring zip codes. The street a child is born on should not dictate the quality of education they receive, the condition of the building they learn in, or the opportunities they are afforded in their larger communities. Every single neighborhood deserves a well-funded and well-supported public school.
Our educational system needs to follow students from early childhood all the way into their careers. Trade and career education are an important option for many students during and after high school. We need to invest in quality training for the kinds of careers that will be part of our future economies, such as something about computers and green energy technology.
For more and more students, an undergraduate degree is a requirement for their chosen careers. For some, this is part of a long, well-funded tradition. For others, it is a time of financial worry and descent into student loan debt. Income-based tuition and expanded federal funding of programs such as the Pell Grant and the GI Bill are the kinds of solutions that will take us towards a debt-free higher education system.
I’m not afraid to stand up for the lives of all Americans and I will support legislation through that will address the gun violence in our schools and communities.
I have a three-step plan to tackle gun violence in America and ensure a safer future for our children.
The first step: I will refuse absolutely any support or money from the NRA.
As someone with guns in the home, I am a firm believer in the Second Amendment. However, safety and the preservation of innocent lives are my biggest priorities, and the NRA has devalued both of these by opposing any positive action toward gun law reform. The current 2nd District Representative, French Hill, has taken $1,089,477 from this organization--more than any other House member. His choice is an irresponsible one that endangers the lives of Arkansans and Americans in general, and I vow to make the right one when I am in office.
The second step: I will expand background checks on gun-buyers.
In order to make safety the top priority, I believe that we must require background checks for all gun buyers and keep a record of all firearm sales. In addition, we must prevent individuals with criminal or otherwise dangerous pasts from buying guns by closing the gun show, default-proceed, and “boyfriend” loopholes. (dangerous mental illnesses, too)
The third step: I will work to secure a ban on military-style assault weapons, as outlined by Senator Dianne Feinstein in 2017.
During my service in the Air Force, I used assault rifles like the AR-15; these weapons are intended for the express purpose of killing multiple human beings and do not belong in the hands of average Americans. Magazines with 10 or more rounds of ammo serve a similar purpose, and likewise should not be sold to the public. Senator Dianne Feinstein has already introduced a bill banning both assault rifles and magazines above 10 rounds, the passage for which I will fight to the end.
I am convinced that these steps, in combination, will help to reduce gun-violence within Arkansas and our country as a whole. In addition, they will shake up the complacent establishment which holds immoral and life-endangering policies in place.
All of us deserve financial security in the form of living wages tied to inflation, a strong economy, and the preservation of Medicare and Social Security, also tied to inflation.
I believe in economic fairness for all, and aim to secure it by focusing on minimum wage, women’s rights in the workplace, benefits for veterans, and Social Security.
Even in Arkansas, where the minimum wage is above the national rate, a person must work 54 hours a week to afford a two-bedroom apartment. We must raise our minimum wage to $15 an hour, so that all workers are guaranteed to live with dignity. This applies to immigrants as well so they have the representation and pay that their hard work warrants.
We must ensure that businesses provide women with equal pay for equal work by 2025, through the use of tax incentives for and tougher enforcement where standards already exist. Women deserve paid family and sick leave, and I will work to require employers to provide them with both; they also deserve high-quality, affordable healthcare, and my goal is to make it accessible for them.
I want to create a dignified life for retirees as well. Social Security helps provide stability for those who have labored for decades, so I will do all in my power to protect it. Being a veteran myself, I also feel a strong desire to preserve benefits for retired servicemembers and will never cease in protecting them.