Where I stand on the issues…
The American Dream is as diverse as the individuals and their families who pursue it. The ability to define and pursue a unique dream for yourself or your family is what sets America apart from every other country in the world. When an American family discusses its plans for the future around the dinner table, they are enjoying a right and opportunity that is brought about by the United States Constitution.
Here in North Idaho, this Dream has begun to fade for our families. The expansion of state and federal government has left Idaho families spending too much time trying to navigate the complex bureaucracies and too little time enjoying their freedoms. Big government has pulled up a seat at your dinner table without being invited. They now dictate your health insurance choices and costs. They tell you how you may or may not use your land. They make sure your children learn their curriculum in school. They now need all of your personal information so that they can monitor what decisions you make as a family. They want you to run all your family’s decisions through their bureaucracy before you may pursue your dreams.
It is time to reverse this trend. My concept is simple: more freedom for Idaho families. I will work hard to free you from excessive regulations and restrictions. I will make sure you keep more of your hard-earned dollars in your own pocket. I will adhere to the fundamental concept of American government which is to protect the rights of citizens. When the government gets out of your personal business and focuses on protecting your rights, your dinner table can once again be a place of great dreams. It can again be the place where your family makes decisions for itself and enjoys the promise and pursuit of a better future.
I know there are many issues affecting Idaho families and hindering their pursuit of the American Dream. I have singled out those below which I believe are of primary importance to all Idaho families.
Affordable Health Care Act & Health Care Exchanges: I believe this to be the single biggest hurdle to Idaho families pursuing their American Dream. I stand on the idea of less federal oversight, control, and bureaucracy in our health care system. A federally controlled state health care exchange is not the appropriate means to provide the residents of Idaho with a fiscally responsible free-market system to assist them in covering their health care costs.
When your North Idaho representatives voted in favor of the Idaho State exchanges, Idaho was linked into the federal data hub which is destined to become the most serious threat to Idaho families’ privacy and pocketbooks. I will actively work to repeal the Idaho State Exchanges and to defund the Affordable Care Act. Neither the federal government nor the State of Idaho should govern by intentions, but by what is lawful and constitutional. Our Constitution provides for self- governance, including our ability to make individual choices about our health care needs without federal government intervention and control. Opening competition between states and allowing personal health savings accounts would lower individual costs and reduce overall healthcare costs. While our current healthcare system may need reform, I believe that federal involvement is not the answer.
Sovereignty of Idaho: Idaho families have always been known for their toughness and tenacity. We live here because we love the challenges and uniqueness of our state. However, in recent years, Idaho’s legislature has depended less on the ingenuity and hard-working efforts of Idaho families and turned more often to federal handouts and cheap loans. When Idaho accepts federal funds, there are always strings attached. There is always plenty of free cheese in a mousetrap! In order for Idaho to strengthen its state sovereignty, we need to decrease acceptance of federal bribes.
I will work diligently to support sound legislation that works towards transferring ownership of currently held federal lands back to the State of Idaho. Other western states have begun this process. I believe Idahoans can manage our lands more efficiently than can the federal bureaucracies. Approximately 63% of all Idaho land is under federal jurisdiction. These lands contain a wealth of resources (water, metals, minerals, timber, natural gas, and much more) which could propel Idaho to better standards of living. Careful stewardship of these resources would allow for both long-term environmental care as well as provide abundant jobs for Idaho’s economy. Idaho citizens are tired of federal agencies wasting American tax dollars, locking us out of our public lands and stalling our economic recovery by keeping valuable resources out of our reach. When our country was founded, federal land control was supposed to be temporary, and ownership was eventually to be transferred back to the states in “a timely manner.”
Education: I believe Idaho families understand that well-educated children are the future of this great state and country.
I will work to support and develop legislation designed to steer our state education system away from federal handouts and the strings attached to them. Parents and local teachers (not the federal government) should decide how their children should be educated. This is not the job of the federal government. I believe in empowering families to choose the best educational path for their children and the state’s job to enable this. Idaho children need access to a curriculum designed to allow them to achieve their potential whether it is in a home school, private school, or public school environment.
Privacy & Protection: Our Fourth Amendment protects citizens from unreasonable searches and our Second Amendment protects our right to keep and carry arms.
American families and individuals have long enjoyed privacy when it comes to our personal lives, our health, our finances and our beliefs. It is one of the founding principles setting us apart from the rest of the world. We are under increased scrutiny by numerous federal agencies who believe our privacy and right to protect ourselves can be eliminated in the name of national security. Our privacy cannot be ignored for the sake of security. I will fight to ensure that Idaho laws are in place and enforced so that Idaho residents enjoy the privacy and protection we desire. I am against drone use on Idaho citizens, illegal searches, and collection and storage of personal and medical information by government agencies.
I believe that every law-abiding citizen has the right to keep and bear arms for protection, recreation, or sport. The Second Amendment is a clearly worded Constitutional right that I will defend. The constitution was not written by the government to tell the people what rights they had, but written by the people to direct the government by carefully outlining its limited rights and power. I believe the State of Idaho is best equipped to deal with gun issues, not the federal government. I am a National Rifle Association member and have a concealed weapons permit.
Religious Freedom, Marriage, and Life: I believe in respect for all religions unless a religion restricts other’s beliefs or uses violence or intimidation to oppress others.
Religious freedoms are guaranteed by the First Amendment. I believe Idaho families value faith, religion, and traditional marriage. I do not believe federal or state governments should be involved in defining marriage through laws, taxation, benefits or privileges. Everyone should have the right to pursue their own lifestyle, liberty, and happiness as long as it does not harm or infringe on the rights of others.
I will vote against any law or proposed funding that takes the life of an unborn child or promotes euthanasia due to age, disease, injury, or medical condition.
Taxes: I believe in a tax code that is simple, stable and understandable that allows Idahoans to plan and save for their future.
By reducing or simplifying tax regulations, we can promote a business environment more favorable for growth. When Idaho businesses are allowed to grow, the tax base increases, which ultimately leads to lower tax rates. This would directly benefit Idaho families through more job opportunities, better-paying jobs and a higher standard of living.