2017 was a year of tremendous change for our country.
So many of us have responded to this change by standing up and doing something about the problems our families, our communities, our state, and our country face.
As the drivers of the change we deserve, we can lift our families and communities up.
We can only do that together.
With the ending of net neutrality, providers can make consumers pay for faster speeds. They can limit what sites we have access to unless we pay more.
It’s actually the same dilemma workers often face when negotiating with the boss, which is why collective bargaining is such a crucial right for workers. Individually, they have little power.
There are reasons why consumers see rises in both their prices and the profits of these companies. We have few mechanisms afforded to us to protect us from the decisions of companies and government.
I’m not one to blame our problems on one person or one party.
I also don’t believe that one solution will solve any of it.
Throughout much of my life, when I see a problem I do something about it.
I don’t complain, I get to work instead.
Our current over two-decade incumbent Representative John Shimkus is now sitting on the House-Senate conference committee responsible with hammering out the final tax reform bill to be sent to the White House to become the law of the land.
The unfortunate reality for the 50% under the median is that they will be hurt by this tax bill. That’s what happens when you focus on one point along a continuum in order to obscure the massive tax cuts for the top 50% and permanent corporate tax cuts that we all know won’t be used to increase wages but be given to stockholders instead.
What we should do is the following:
continue repairing the damage of decades of denial and decay
have representatives show up and hold the VA accountable in hearings
have representatives show up in their districts by listening to veterans and the groups that serve them
increase assistance to hard hit areas like Danville and Vermilion County
open VA sites within community health providers where VAs hospitals don’t exist
make the pipeline bigger for people going into healthcare specialties
increase grants and scholarships for students
increase money to colleges and universities
increase faculty and staff that educate and train these specialties
actually stabilize funding for Medicaid, Medicare, and local healthcare providers instead of starving them of resources.
These allegations and realities from the past and present are as disturbing as they are common. We have to do better.
What we can do is to take the politics out of the equation, focus on the facts, and respect one another without ignoring the reality staring us in the face.
The costs of rebuilding America are high.
The costs of doing nothing are much higher.
I will fight to rebuild this District on every level and on every day. We can only do this together and by creating jobs, in the present and for the future.