Contrary to what we've been told, people can and do die from a lack of healthcare. And we ALL do have a right to healthcare. Healthcare for all can be a reality! We must fill the coverage gaps ASAP, insuring as many as we can by supporting Medicaid Expansion. We must stop the Congressional sabotage that's causing insurance companies to raise our premium costs. Currently, Congress is intentionally withholding the 're-insurance' subsidy payments that they owe insurance companies, which forces them to adjust, causing them to raise their rates to stay in business - making us think the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is to blame for the rate hikes.
We can strengthen and expand Medicare in phases, covering everyone and lowering costs. We can stabilize the market by fixing the current laws, having Congress actually pay what they promised, then reducing more costs by repealing the Republican's restriction not allowing Medicare to negotiate down drug prices and other services. There is no immediate solution without Republican's help.
AND, in the meantime, even though this is a state legislative issue, I will do everything I can to support 'Medicaid Expansion' in Idaho, and across the country. It makes NO sense that Idaho is currently refusing to accept what amounts to a 90% discount for providing healthcare for those 78,000+ Idahoans that remain uninsured. And for what reason - misguided pride? Refusing to expand Medicaid for the 78,000+ Idahoans making less than $12,100, when that Medicaid is 90% paid for is fiscally irresponsible, callous and heartless. No one should be without healthcare!
While trying to pay back their major donors and the wealthiest 2%, this Congress ignores the fact that providing basic, necessary healthcare is much cheaper than having the uninsured utilizing the most expensive and least efficient portions of our medical system, like hospital emergency rooms.
Think of your family, your home, and everything you've worked so hard for; the medical bills from just one serious accident or illness, could wipe away everything you've worked for!
What will I Do?
Healthcare doesn't have to be as complicated and expensive as Congress is making it. Starting with Medicare as a model, create Consolidated Medicare for ALL, with an accelerated implementation, 'phasing it in' as soon as able. This approach is far more affordable for all, including the taxpayers, and shows that cost-effective healthcare can be a reality. Don’t be fooled by the lies calling this 'socialized medicine' or making this about 'waiting in long lines'- we already do! Our 'right to life' in this country is a right to a healthy life. ‘Consolidated-Medicare’ is uniquely American, and will save lives and tax dollars.
And please don't be fooled by the greedy top 1% who want more money at our expense. The Republican Healthcare/Tax plan gives the top 1% a huge tax cut and more wealth, so even more people would lose healthcare. According to the latest CBO score, these tax cuts for the wealthy would would exceed the legal $1.5 trillion deficit limits, so their self-imposed deficit increase and would necessitate cutting billions from Medicare!
Medicare is functional, affordable and respected. In short, it works! Transforming it into 'Consolidated-Medicare' makes it work for all of us.
Idaho is NOT for sale! Keep public lands public and protected, accessible for hunting, recreation, and for our enjoyment. The State of Idaho cannot afford to maintain and protect these lands like the Federal government does, and our State Legislature already knows this. If the Federal Government is forced to turn control over to the state, Idaho could not afford to maintain them and would have to sell our lands. Then our public lands would be inaccessible and gone forever - We cannot let this happen!
Many republicans try to convince us our federal public lands are a “states rights” issue, and that we need to return them to state control, claiming the state can do a better job. This makes absolutely NO sense, because Idaho just doesn't have the money. So why take on this additional cost and responsibility when the federal government is paying a bill Idaho can’t afford? Could it be the many rich and special business interests want our lands for the profit they can make? The answer is YES!
Private Lands - We must also protect private ownership rights - Our Idaho legislature is giving Alta-Mesa a free ‘fracking’ license to take our privately held mineral rights to our own land, using 'forced pooling' to force land owners into leases that are yielding only a pittance. And no protections have been put in place for when the land or groundwater for wells are poisoned by the chemicals released.
> Since fracking - Oklahoma has more than 3 times the earthquakes as California.
Useful links that help explain:
Educated citizens are one of our most valuable assets, and somewhere along the way, we lost sight of that. Education is an investment in the future of our children, an essential investment our nation’s future, and the key to our long-term economic success, growth and prosperity.
I will work for federal and state legislative support of education to create a viable Pre-K program and prepare high school students for careers, whether through vocational/technical certifications, or 2 or 4-Year college degrees. For too long, most people have assumed that the only alternative after high school is to pursue a 4-year degree or to find your own way. Promises of only a free '4-year college for all' ignore the millions of citizens who have a different calling.
Education is key to successful employment, good wages, and the opportunity to work at a job you want. The reality is that not all of us are cut out for, or even want a 4-year degree. Many of us just want to follow our passions and interests, and go to vocational or technical school or pursue a 2-year degree. To build a stronger and more effective workforce, we should focus on ALL post-secondary education, and that education should be provided by a program that is self-sustaining and paid for. I have that plan! My proposal is a tuition-free post-secondary education that targets all of our educational goals, which is foundational for a 'Trickle-Up' economy and rebuilding our middle-class. This program is called 'Scholar-Quest'!Learn more... 'Trickle-Up'?
'Trickle-Up' is the more realistic economic concept that putting money in the hands of the people who actually spend the money, will bolster the economy, creating more business opportunities and even more jobs.
The program is called 'Scholar-Quest' and is designed to work both as state & federal programs. Scholar-Quest is a program which is not only paid for, but targets ALL post-secondary students, and builds a mutually beneficial relationship with business, ensuring relevant curriculum with input from industry leaders - AND CREATES JOBS! This program is predicated upon the concept of mutual benefit. Businesses need well-educated & trained employees to succeed, and employees need viable businesses for jobs and living wages.
This plan would make education free through tax incentives and reforms for business and industry by reducing corporate and business taxes in constructive and productive ways that encourage change in business and industry focus to employee education and retention. Specifically, this program is paid for by direct tax-deductible contributions by large and small businesses, creating the Scholar-Quest fund. A fund specifically designed for education. In return, this program would require graduates to perform 'community service pay-back', giving back to the community through monthly volunteer hour requirements.
Student debt is crippling our economy. Currently, our total U.S. student debt is $1.3 trillion, which is larger than both credit card and auto loans combined! And this is money that is going straight to the banks - NOT into our economy. Using Scholar-Quest, the elimination of student debt would be accomplished through the same community service pay-back program. We can also reduce remaining debt by allowing refinancing at lower and more competitive rates. This would unleash tremendous economic activity by lowering interest rates on student loans and re-directing money from the banks back into the economy.
Our children are an untapped intellectual resource who deserve a chance to reach their potential. Imagine what our children could do if they were educated to their potential, and were provided with the educational tools they need for success.
Education is an essential investment in our human infrastructure, which is the key to rebuilding our middle-class, our economy, and to creating a truly free-market. It is also essential to our long term success as we compete in this now-global economy, and to our nation’s future economic security.
"Pre-K through 12-Prep" is an educational approach more consistent with the way we learn, and designed to help students identify and pursue the career choices they desire.
And we cannot forget our Teachers!
Teachers deserve fair pay for the long hours they actually put in. Teachers deserve increased tax deduction limits for training and the many supplies we know that they pay for out of their own pockets. They need tax deductions and access to funding assistance for costs related to their continuing education, and enhanced certifications. And we must do everything we can, in conjunction with the state, to increase wages and decrease class sizes. This is only fair to both our teachers, and our children.
Jobs and Wages
My goal is to create a more educated and well-trained workforce, tax relief plans that encourage investment that both stimulate and grow the economy and our workforce. Create affordable jobs using targeted infrastructure, education, job training, and tax relief plans that both stimulate and grow the economy.
Create jobs with wages that allow you to be self-sufficient. Use education, specialized or vocational job training, 'employment & employee based' tax incentives that encourage businesses to hire and retain their employees, and rationally applied changes to the minimum wage based upon regional cost of living indexes. We must also develop targeted infrastructure projects for Idaho, that support future growth and allow us to work in the state we love.
Tax cuts should stimulate the economy and work to strengthen the middle-class. These 'trickle-down economics' tax plans have been tried and don't work - We need to create a 'trickle-up' tax plan that will put more money in the hands of the people who will spend it into the economy. I will fight to cut waste and eliminate any unnecessary taxes, invest in infrastructure projects that create actual return on our investment, creating jobs both from actual work on the projects, but also from the new markets those projects help to create. Increase our tax revenue by creating more 'affordable-wage jobs'. I will work to create a balanced budget, with any and all surplus going into a cash reserve, and to pay down our national debt.
Think of taxes like your income and the Federal budget like your household budget; You have more and more bills and you're in debt up to your eyeballs - So do you run to your boss and say 'I want a pay-cut'? This is what many in our Congress are trying to do - cut tax revenue when we are already so seriously in debt. This is NOT sound tax policy nor good for our economy - it's just crazy!
Taxes should be for providing essential services and stimulating growth. No business or country can grow without investing in itself in ways that help it's people be productive, facilitate growth in business, and with more emphasis on education, creating a more able workforce. Investment in more forward-thinking infrastructure projects that create an actual return on our investment, creating more jobs and facilitating future job market expansion. This approach increases the number of businesses and citizens working and paying taxes, and that increase in tax revenue means we can balance the budget with a surplus, create a contingency reserve, and pay down our national debt.
I will also do everything I can to ensure that there is no misuse of your tax dollars. As with the recent personal travel scandals that are apparently costing us tax payers into the millions of dollars now, rules and laws should be enforced, these people should be fired and made to pay back every misused tax dollar.
Social Security / Medicare
We paid for these programs with our hard earned money, and I will protect these programs so we get what we deserve! You, your parents and grandparents have paid for these programs all your working lives and you deserve to get the benefits you paid for. Congress took trillions of dollars in IOU's for our money it "borrowed" from our Social Security and Medicare. If we can make them repay it, plus the current 2.5 Trillion dollar surplus, we can keep Social Security and Medicare safe, and give us the time to fix any remaining long range issues. The Congress changed the method used to calculate cost of living increases, so now the increases can't keep up with inflation, and our elderly suffer even more. I will work to ensure that Social Security payments re-adjust, and keep pace with inflation.Learn more...
Contrary to what we've been hearing about Social Security, there is time to evaluate and see what might need to be fixed. We have had some challenges to the system; high unemployment and lower wages resulting in less and lower contributions, Trillions of our dollars being 'borrowed' by the Republican congress and being spent on the general budget of the U.S. - the same general budget that Ryan Zinke and Tom Price use for their hundreds of thousands of dollars in personal/private travel.
The only immediate crisis for Social Security is that the Republican legislature wants us to think there is a crisis, and use that scare tactic to take it away from us. As employment and wages increase, and the economy grows stronger, more people will be paying more money into the system, and of course we get congress to honor and pay back their IOU's, and this alleged crisis can be calmly evaluated and any necessary fixes considered.
It's time for all of us to invest in Solar and Wind energy, because they are free. Not only are these sources cheap, safe, and won't run out, but using these sources will create good-paying jobs here in Idaho. Investing in Wind and Solar energy makes economic sense, even for homeowners. With increased solar tax credits and the roll-over tax deduction, homeowners can assist Idaho in becoming the first state to reduce energy cost while protecting our environment.Learn more...
Solar (PV) panels installed on homes are now lasting over 20 years, and the average recapture of those costs, after tax credit incentives, is about 7 to 9 years - it's paid off and the energy you generate is free! The installations are done tying into your local power company, Idaho Power in our case, so from day one, once the system is approved and installed, you are then able to obtain offsets through 'net metering'. Basically, that means if you produce more energy than you use, you are off the grid and get energy credits for any excess that your systems put into the grid - which you can use later at no cost. And on the days when you produce less than you use, Idaho Power supplements the difference. Much of the savings starts right away. This net metering tariff is also available for wind, hydro, biomass, geothermal and fuel cell technologies.
Many cities and towns across the country are converting their municipal energy requirements to some combination of Wind/Solar and other sources, and are cutting their power bills dramatically. Whether you support this because of your love of the environment or your love of money - or both - it is a very sound investment for our state, or country, and you. And there is the 3rd reason I'm particularly fond of it; eventual energy/political independence from foreign energy sources.
We need to create a 'Trickle-Up' economy; a more realistic economic concept that puts money in the hands of the lower-income people and middle-class will bolster the economy, creating more business opportunities and even more jobs. Promoting this type of growth requires infrastructure development and investment in our most precious resource – our people! We create a strong economy when we have a strong middle-class, all our citizens are trained and working, and when our citizens and business have the environment necessary to thrive. We need each other; businesses provide jobs, and an employed middle-class buys. Supporting both workers and business, encouraging and strengthening that reliance as an 'alliance' in working toward mutual success.
And currently, student loan debt is larger than all credit card debt in America - decreasing or eliminating that debt will put more cash into the economy, increasing economic growth and employment. We need to stop paying the banks and the top 2% and put that money into our economy.
In addition to the effects of the education, jobs and healthcare plans on the economy, only invest in infrastructure projects that promote growth and economic development, creating "win-win" scenarios for all stakeholders with an expectation of mutual return on our investment. Migrate business tax incentives to Employee/employment based deductions encouraging employee retention and 'affordable-living wages'.
I spent over 44 years in public service, initially as a Fireman/EMT-Paramedic, and with over 30 years in Law Enforcement helping to keep people safe. As a former member of a SWAT Team, Sheriff's Cliff-Dive Search and Rescue, work in our Information Technologies Unit dealing with cyber and security issues, and more, I will continue keeping Americans safe. I will demand that DHS and the Justice Department take the Russian threat seriously and do all it can to protect America’s elections from manipulation.
I am fighting to move Idaho, and our nation forward, no matter how powerful the folks standing in our way.
- The Republicans are well funded and we aren’t!
- The Republicans are in office, and we aren’t!
- The Republicans will stay in office, unless...!
...unless; we all come together, put our differences aside, unite, work hard for what we believe in, and contribute what you can to help our campaign succeed!
We cannot continue to elect the few who think only of themselves and are not properly representing Idaho, or you! I firmly believe that America is ready for representatives that are one of them; that listen to the people and put them first, that understand our lives, and that have lived in tough times and had to work hard on their way to a better life.
I’m running now because I can’t stand to see anyone try to make it even harder to have a 'better life', or take away what we've worked so hard for. With so much on the line, we have to unite and stand together. I need your help to ensure that ALL our voices are heard, and that I can speak for you! I also don't want your 'one-time' donation to hurt, so see what you can afford monthly and consider a recurring donation. In these times, it is truly an investment in protecting our future!
Please, donate now and let’s make sure our voices are heard! –Jim
Treat all immigrant humanely, enforce existing laws, and reform what doesn't work, with particular attention to worker visas in support of our agriculture and our dairy industries.
DACAThese kids were raised here in America, America is all they know or remember, and they are all contributing to America. They learn, they work, pay taxes and contribute to America, and many are serving in our military. And all DACA children have gone through an in depth vetting process before qualifying. I will work to make DACA an actual law with a path to citizenship, so these kids can be protected from and not subject to the whims of any executive in the White House.
We must find a way to reverse the 'Citizens United' decision. Citizen United unfortunately allows the top 2% to give unlimited amounts of money to be used in our elections. And these are unknown contributors and large corporations that are only looking out for 'their' interests, not you and me. Currently, SuperPACs are formed and the 'unknown contributors' spend unlimited amounts of money for the purpose of 'buying' elections, spreading exaggerations, negative and deceptive advertising, and sometimes just plain lies - effecting our choices. In order for our elections to truly be fair, for us to be able to make informed choices, and for our voices to be heard, this must stop!
In 2010, the Supreme Court, in a 5 to 4 decision, decided that 'money is free speech', super PACs were formed, and in six short years, we now have a Congress that is more interested in corporations and 'Party' than people, and a President named Trump... If monetary contributions are free speech, considering the spending power of the Koch brothers and those other wealthy corporations that contribute many millions to Super PACs - do you, the average voter, still have the ability to compete? Do you have the same equal influence as the Koch brothers? Or has this caused the 'playing field' to become so un-level that our voices may never be heard?
Over half our population have guns and do handle them responsibly. My concerns are for those few that endanger our families and loved ones. We can protect the second amendment and still implement common sense gun safety legislation that makes all of us safer including background checks, waiting periods, and increased training for gun owners. I will work to make progress on implementing key gun safety measures that protect our rights, our families and loved ones, and keep us safe.
My Scholar-Quest educational plan is also an investment in a "Path to Work", helping those on public assistance to be productive again by providing the educational tools they need to get back on their feet, and off welfare, creating productive tax-paying citizens. 'If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day; if you teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime'. The system is clearly broken and unfortunately designed to keep people on welfare -'How is it broken'?
Say a woman with 2 children on welfare is paid $15K per/yr, she gets a job that pays $12K - her payments are reduced to $3K, so after working hard, daycare expense, etc, she's still only making $15K per/Yr. This creates a false incentive to give up and stay on welfare programs. Under my plan, no benefits are lost while training or getting the education necessary to get off the system!
Through education, job training and placement, these folks get the tools necessary for their success, get off welfare services and productive members of our community, saving us all money in the long run.
A strong and productive middle-class is what spends the money that creates a productive economy, NOT the top 1 or 2%. We must change to a 'trickle up' economy that gives advantage to the people that actually spend money in this economy! For some reason, the wealthy top 1 or 2% don't seem to understand that a healthy economy is driven by a healthy middle-class, which should still make them money - but not at the expense of the middle class. The 'trickle down economy' has been tried before and clearly failed.
What's good for the middle-class 'is' what's good for our economy, and for America!
This is a personal decision that each woman has the right to decide for herself, and I firmly believe it is not for me to judge or legislate the personal choices of others. My choice is to allow every individual to exercise their inalienable right to make their own decisions.
Raul Labrador, Russ Fulcher and those who share their political beliefs are actually 'pro-birth', NOT 'pro-life', and have also said that 'healthcare is not a right'... So using this logic, once born, the mother knows that she and her child are on their own! Knowing the economic hardship she would face, don't the 'pro-birth' people understand that they are actually forcing women to make unwanted choices? Shouldn't being 'Pro-Life' mean that you want create an environment and quality of life where children and families can thrive?
We need to stop allowing this issue and religion to be politicized. Our Congressmen are inciting anger over this one issue, using it to divide us and manipulate many of us into being 'single-issue' voters. I have spoken to many people from both political sides, and most are so passionate about this issue that they are even willing to vote for a candidate that may take away their healthcare, disrespect women, create tax breaks for the wealthy that destroy the middle-class and allow them to gut Social Security & Medicare, give the 'free internet' to corporations, and erode our democracy!
These alleged conservatives say they want government out of our personal lives, but then they impose their will on our personal lives - especially women! These Conservatives are pro-birth, NOT pro-life - which means once the child is born, mother & child are on their own. We must see this for the hypocrisy it is and not allow ourselves to be victims of this manipulation ever again! This is a very personal issue and I trust women can decide for themselves.