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A Note From the Candidate: Why I am Running

I am running for Congress because I believe that we can do far better than we have. While the Nation is recovering from the near collapse a few years ago of the financial sector, the recovery is far too slow and has been felt primarily at the top. Millions of jobs were lost, trillions of dollars of middle class wealth disappeared, and millions of Americans lost their homes and their savings. Job growth is slower than it should be, and middle class wages are stagnant. College students face growing costs and debts, as well as lessened job prospects. I am deeply concerned about the number of children, seniors, and working families that continue to fall into poverty.

The Republican House majority response is cuts to programs that help the most vulnerable while leaving in place taxpayer subsidies for enormously profitable industries. Their budget proposals would increase taxes on the middle class while lowering them for those at the top. Their “jobs bills” have virtually no jobs in them. They aim to weaken regulation of the financial services industry that brought us the worst recession since the Great Depression, while big banks grow larger and your account balance has likely shrunk. They battle any efforts to protect the environment through the development of alternative energy technologies and conservation. They will not bring to vote any bills that the radical minority of the Party opposes and they ignore important issues while distracting you with meaningless show votes and endless repetitive hearings.

I need your help to defeat Randy Hultgren in 2014. A contributor to Congress’ dysfunction, Representative Hultgren has been identified as the most conservative member of the Illinois Congressional delegation. He is not a traditional conservative, but instead belongs to the radical wing of the Republican Party. A member of what conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer called the House Republicans’ 80-member “suicide caucus”, he was the only member of the Illinois delegation, Republican or Democrat, to vote against reopening the federal government after the October 2013 shutdown. He opposes a minimum wage increase, the extension of unemployment benefits, pay equity, and voted against the Violence Against Women Act. His agenda is not reflective of the needs of the majority of people in our District.

If you elect me to Congress I will take seriously the need to make our economy work for all, and not just for those at the top. I promise to work to secure and protect Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. I will work for meaningful campaign finance reform to end the undue influence of money in our politics. I recognize the dire threats posed by climate change, and will fight to protect the environment. Unlike my opponent, I will never respond to constituents by reciting discredited talking points.

Congress belongs to you. I am a pragmatist willing to work with anyone who honestly seeks solutions to the very real problems that face us. I want to work for you.
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