I chose to run as an independent because I, like many of us, don’t fall into a box when it comes to my opinions on the important issues. We can all agree that the divisiveness and partisanship has grown exponentially, which has caused our government to be less effective in its operations. As an independent, I'm not willing to toe a party line so I can truly be that bipartisan voice for our district and represent all of my neighbors at our state government.
I pride myself on working across divides to build consensus and compromise. I believe in standing up for what is right, even when it’s hard, even if you are the lone voice of dissent. I believe that our representatives should be just that – representatives of the people who elected them. That is why I am running. Because I believe that I would be the best representative for you, your family, and our district.
Economy: Small Business & Tourism
So much of our district relies on tourism and small businesses that we must work to strengthen these within our communities. This includes extending internet access in our rural areas, supporting manufacturing and farming, providing affordable workforce housing to allow employees to live close to their work, etc.
Infrastructure is topic that I want to start working to address on Day One. We know we have a problem with road quality in Wisconsin, especially in and between our rural communities. I, like you, experience this every day as I go to work, get groceries, and chauffeur my daughter to her activities. Our roads are in terrible condition. We need to focus on improving our infrastructure and repairing our roads, bridges, and water systems - especially in our rural communities, which are so often left behind.
Wisconsin lost 818 dairy farms in 2019 and leads the nation in farm bankruptcies. Agriculture is such an integral part of our state's history and economy, adding $104.8 billion annually. I want to work in-depth with our farmers to address the issues effecting them including groundwater quality, expanding broadband access, the availability of health insurance, and the fostering of rural businesses. The partisanship in our state has prevented meaningful work from being done to address our farmer's needs, despite consensus on their importance. I want to bridge the gap, work across the aisle, and put aside partisanship to affect real change that will support our agricultural community.
We all agree that children are our future and that teachers are an integral and underpaid part of that future. We need to support our public school systems to ensure that our children have equal opportunities to learn and grow, work to make higher education affordable and accessible, and work to address the student loan crisis.
This public health crisis and safer-at-home mandate has opened all of our eyes to the hard work that our teachers put in and opens up a unique opportunity to push for higher and more appropriate compensation for our teachers.
Growing up, it was understood that I would attend a four year university. It was implied that there was no other option. For me, it was a good choice, but we need to support the idea that each person has different skills and strengths and encourage the growth of our existing and future skilled tradespeople.
Medical expenses have risen out of control. The idea that people are rationing life-saving drugs due to cost is absurd and disgraceful. Even a stable, upper-middle class household is only one medical emergency away from financial disaster. I support the following ideas:
- People who like their healthcare coverage should be able to keep it
- Insurance should not be able to decline coverage due to pre-existing conditions
- Drug companies should not be able to make exorbitant profits on life saving drugs like insulin
Climate change is a real threat to humanity and needs to be addressed. We are seeing changes in the attitudes of big corporations as they respond to their consumers’ growing demand for corporate responsibility. However, changes aren’t happening quickly enough, and this is where the government needs to provide guidance and policy establishing benchmarks for sustainability and environmental protection.
We live in a beautiful state and have the privilege of wide expanses of undeveloped land that our residents can utilize and explore. We need to ensure that we are working to provide clean air, clean water, and protected wilderness for generations to come.
While not a decision I would make for myself, neither my beliefs nor the government should be involved in a woman’s healthcare decisions for herself. If we want to reduce the number of abortions, we should increase appropriate sexual health education, accessibility to contraception, and education and resources surrounding adoption.
Guns are one of the more polarizing topics of our time. Wisconsin has a long, rich history as a hunting state and a rate of gun ownership of almost 35%. However, we cannot ignore that gun violence and mass shootings become a serious problem in our country. I believe that a middle ground can be found, where responsible citizens can own their firearms with pride and security, but common-sense reforms can be initiated to protect our people.
The second amendment states that “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.” As such, I do not support bans on certain types of firearms, nor on the number of firearms someone can own. I do, however, support the implementation of nationwide/universal background checks for anyone purchasing a gun from any source – including gun shows and sales between private parties.
I also support the reciprocity of concealed carry laws, but only if education and training to receive a concealed carry permit is standardized across state lines.
We all know that criminals will get access to guns through illegal means – that is why they are criminals. But instituting policies and laws that will prevent them from easier access will make access harder and increases the likelihood of our esteemed police force finding these perpetrators prior to their crime being committed.
With 83% of Wisconsinites supporting the legalization of medical marijuana and 59% supporting full legalization, we need to move forward with the legalization process. As recent as December 2019, our representatives voiced support for this process, but refused to move forward due to the politics. I believe we can work together, across the aisles, to bring Wisconsin forward in our marijuana policies. I also believe that taxing the sale of recreational marijuana would provide additional income to our state that could be used for things like infrastructure and schools as well as reducing money spent on policing enforcement and imprisonment of those convicted of marijuana-related offense.
One of the issues that is closest to my heart, access to stable, quality housing is one of the cornerstones for upward mobility and the American Dream. I believe in the partnership of the public and private sectors to achieve greater access for all. With my background in affordable housing programs, I’ve seen what works and what isn’t working and have ideas for reforming the public housing system that would work to move people off of government assistance while setting them up for success in the future. In the short term, I will work to continue the bi-partisan support of affordable housing programs and programs to assist with homeownership.
I am passionate about the equality of all people and pride myself on my open-mindedness and non-judgmental attitude, even toward those with whom I have strong philosophical differences. I believe in the equality of all people, no matter your race, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, age, political beliefs, disability, employment status, etc.