Issues

SAFE AND FAIR ELECTIONS

Based on testimony in the US Senate Intelligence Committee Report on interference in the 2016 US Election, we know Russia successfully infiltrated databases of tens of thousands of Hoosier voters.  As of 2018, Indiana remains one of eight remaining states at the highest risk for hacking by using voting machines that produce no auditable paper trail – crucial in rooting out voting irregularities.   Our state legislation passed a bill in 2019 that gives the state ten years to replace every machine in the state. This is unacceptable. We must replace antiquated equipment, and invest in voting machines with paper trails as soon as possible to ensure safe and fair elections in Indiana.

We also need to finally approve legislation for our districts to be determined by an independent redistricting panel to restore faith in our election process. Republicans have grown their Indiana House majority to 67 out of 100 seats, up from 60; and their Senate majority to 40 of 50 members, up from 37 since re-drawing their own districts in 2011. Independent redistricting commissions have been successful in 13 states What’s right for Indiana has to become more important than partisan politics to ensure we, the people, are picking our politicians and not the other way around.

INVESTMENT IN PUBLIC EDUCATION

In 2019 the Indiana legislature approved five times more funding for private and charter schools than our public schools, keeping Indiana’s teachers the lowest paid in the midwest - compared to Michigan #1, Ohio #3, Kentucky #7. In addition, the new funding encourages schools to shift at least 85% of state funding towards teacher pay, though it is not required. Our district has one of the strongest public K-12 education programs nationally – with 56 National Merit Semifinalists across Carmel, Zionsville and Westfield in 2019, as well as four of Indiana’s 103 national Blue Ribbon schools.  Teachers have gone on strike across the US - risking their jobs and our kids’ education for fair pay. We can’t let this happen in Indiana. We must do better here. 

KEEPING OUR KIDS SAFE AT SCHOOL AND HOME

An estimated 3 million American children are exposed to shootings per year.  Witnessing shootings, whether in their schools, their communities or their homes, can have a devastating long term impact. Gun violence is out of control in our country; we can be so much smarter in how we keep our children and families safe.  I support enacting the important mental and social-emotional recommendations made by Governor Holcomb’s 2018 Indiana School Safety Report which was left out 2019 state legislation, as well as bi-partisian supported gun safety laws.

HEALTHY FAMILIES

In 2020 average healthcare costs are predicted to increase by five percent, while in Indiana costs are expected to rise nine percent.  I support the Indiana Democratic Party’s 2018 Issue Platform which states we must keep health care costs down by making premiums more affordable, reducing out-of-pocket expenses and capping prescription drug costs, while maintaining protections for those with pre- existing conditions and prohibitions on lifetime coverage caps.

THE HIGHEST STANDARDS FOR CLEAN AIR AND WATER

In 2019 US News and World Report ranked Indiana #49 out 50 in pollution with 259 days of unhealthy air quality, 3.8 drinking water violations per 100,00 residents (compared to  a national average of 2.4 per 100,000) and three times the national average of industrial toxins released. That’s shocking. An investment in our environment is an investment in our health.  Clean air and water is what makes our actual environment – not just our business environment – a great place to live, learn and stay. We need to start making changes now.