What makes a single mom from Palmyra, Lebanon County who is a UPS package car driver decide to run for Congress? Since my son’s birth in 1999 I have been largely on the sidelines – watching and listening as public officials become beholden to big-money donors and corporations. Within the past couple of years, I have been returning to my social-activist roots through volunteer work within the Central PA area. Now that my son is 18, it is time to put back on my political activist shoes and roll up my sleeves.
There are so many things that need to be done in Congress – we are losing rights and protections on almost a daily basis – but we need to start somewhere so I have chosen my top three platforms:
- Restore the American middle class – It is no coincidence that the middle class prospered in the 1950s and 60s when union membership was strong. But business leaders took advantage of a few organized labor scandals and have over the decades eroded the public’s confidence and trust in unions. We now find ourselves with stagnating wages and a decreasing amount of full-time jobs while business executives earn tens of millions of dollars per year. People who have worked hard for decades are losing their pensions when their mismanaged company goes out of business but the executives jump safely away with their golden parachutes. Let’s take the popular movements of Occupy Wall Street and Raise the Minimum Wage, combine them with the negotiating and organizing experience of the unions and create a new Progressive Labor Movement. I will work on legislation that is pro-worker and helps American families gain access to a livable wage as well as paid sick/family leave.
- Build on successes of public education – any healthy democracy needs to have a strong educated populace. Public education is the great equalizer therefore all American citizens should have access to quality public schools. Too many members of Congress want to farm out the responsibility of American education to private schools who are subject to market and for-profit forces. Educational institutions freed from competing for dollars can better promote rigorous academic curricula. I will work to promote including pre-K in the public schools, establish standards of incorporating media literacy and critical thinking in secondary schools and find solutions for college affordability and the $1.31 trillion student loan debt crisis.
- Healthcare for all – Obamacare was the most ambitious attempt at universal healthcare in US history. Was it perfect? Absolutely not – but it started taking us from an unwieldy and outdated employer-based healthcare system down the path to coverage for all. A market-based healthcare system is wrong because it profits off of our sick, elderly and disabled. Healthcare for all is not only a noble cause but also a sound financial solution to rising healthcare costs. I will work to fix what is wrong with Obamacare and find solutions so all Americans are covered.
Laura is running to solve problems and the issues that matter to the 15th District. Will you consider supporting her campaign with a donation of $5?