INFRASTRUCTURE

 

We must invest in the communities that are in the 16th district in order for the families that live here to thrive.

 

Concrete, steel, waterways and high-speed internet are building blocks to success. Strengthening our physical and technological infrastructure will boost the economy of the district, create new opportunities for struggling communities, and enhance educational opportunities.

 

Investing in clean energy projects not only creates high-quality jobs but can help move the country towards a sustainable and more secure future.

 

Representative Kinzinger believes that cutting the corporate tax rate will put more dollars towards the nation's infrastructure and supported removing the protections of the Net Neutrality rules.

 

I will respond to the needs of the district, and bring much-needed investments.

SOCIAL SAFETY NET

 

Government must be a force for good. Helping those in need doesn't weaken us, but makes us stronger.

 

Government priorities that benefit the profits of corporations, but ignore the needs of individuals must be revised. We're being told that the government must save money by taking away programs like CHIP and SNAP while massive tax benefits are being given to the top 1%. This is wrong! Societies are judged by how they meet the needs of their most vulnerable members. We can and must do better.

 

Social Security is not a gift from the government, it is a program that working Americans have invested in. We must ensure that we make good on that investment and honor the covenant of that system. I will work to preserve Social Security and protect it from privatization. Adam Kinzinger scores 7% Alliance for Retired Americans, indicating their analysis that, despite what he claims, his actions demonstrate a pro-privatization stance.

 

The Affordable Care Act is a first step towards making sure that all Americans have access to affordable, high-quality health care. Rep. Kinzinger has repeatedly voted to repeal and dismantle the ACA without offering any viable replacement. I will fight to strengthen it, while working to achieve Medicare for all.

 

Along with the improving the safety net that protects our fellow citizens, I will strive to make sure that the US Congress lives up to the ideals that our country was founded on. The emblem of America is the Statue of Liberty, a welcome to those who strive for a brighter future for themselves and their children. So many of us who are here, now, owe that privilege to ancestors who were embraced in that welcome. My grandparents and great-grandparents came to America, worked hard, and made this country stronger, like so many immigrants from around the world today. With fellow Democrats, I will "work towards comprehensive immigration reform that fixes our nation’s broken immigration system, improves border security, prioritizes enforcement so we are targeting criminals - not families, keeps families together, and strengthens our economy" (www.democrats.org/issues/immigration-reform).

environment
 

Climate change is real. Our leadership in scientific endeavors is one of the things that has made America great, and by turning our back on the compelling evidence and expert opinions we risk our very future.

My neighbors in the 16th district are already feeling the effects of changing weather patterns. Farmer's are installing drainage tiles in fields that never needed them before, because of the changing nature of the rainfall. Families that live along the many rivers are faced with a higher risk of flooding and the loss of property values.

 

Climate change poses an urgent threat to our economy and our future.

Green energy is a step in the right direction. Wind power is already contributing to the district's economy and should continue to grow. Green energy infrastructure is a win on many levels - the immediate - skilled laborers are employed to construct the system; the near term - our communities reap the benefits of this development; and the long-term, we limit the addition of CO2 in the atmosphere. I will support green energy development.

 

Adam Kinzinger is a member of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce but has not used that position wisely. He has voted YES on opening the Outer Continental Shelf to oil drilling. He has voted to bar the EPA from regulating greenhouse gasses and has supported letting wind and solar tax credits expire. The 16th district deserves leadership that will be responsible stewards of our natural resources for our future.

 

Find out more about Beth's positions on various issues at the following sites

 

VOTE SMART

CHICAGO TRIBUNE

Education

From universal childcare to making college affordable, I am an advocate for children.

I support The “Childcare for Working Families” legislation put forward by Senator Patty Murray and Congressman Bobby Scott. This legislation would create a federal-state partnership to address high-quality child care and support the creation of universal pre-school. These steps are vital to ensuring a strong start for all children and helping to make vital childcare available for working families.

As a former teacher, I know the challenges that educators face in the classroom every day, and I know that they are some of the strongest champions our children have. We must support them and empower them to do their jobs. High stakes testing that reduces performance to a number in the name of accountability doesn't serve the purpose of education.

By turning our attention to teaching critical thinking skills we can help to create the informed electorate that our democracy needs. By removing the one-size-fits-all standardized test from its pedestal we can empower teachers to meet the needs of each student, including strong vocational education for those students who wish to follow that path. And for those students who choose to pursue college and beyond, we must ensure that they are not beginning their working lives saddled by overwhelming debt.

I'm a proud to say that I am a progressive Democrat. The communities and residents of the 16th district are exhausted by the chaos and hostility in Washington and we're ready for a leader that will move us all forward.
 

I believe that government's role is to work for the public good; to create a level playing field where individuals are valued over corporations, critical thinking is esteemed, truth matters and we invest in the future of our communities, not the profits of hedge fund managers.

 

In my wide-ranging experience, I have found that there is always a solution. The first solution isn't always perfect, but by taking that first step in the right direction, and then the next, we will make the progress and create opportunities that the families of the 16th District deserve.

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Paid for by Citizens for Beth Vercolio-Osmund for Congress