Political grandstanding has no place here
Instead, we're focused on practical legislative issues that put food on the table today and create long-lasting prosperity tomorrow.
There is no secret bullet -- it's about smart economic policy that protects the middle class and drives innovation, social policy that promotes health and education, and governance that is transparent and accountable.
We have record low unemployment across Virginia, but too many of our neighbors are struggling to make ends meet. We don’t need more jobs, we need better jobs. That means targeted investments to create living-wage jobs right here in Central Virginia — especially those with annual salaries of at least $50,000 that don’t require a 4-year college degree. If those jobs happen to be part of the new green economy (like renewable energy), that’s icing on the cake.
Affordable Access to Healthcare
A single medical emergency shouldn’t drive a family into bankruptcy. The costs of routine medical procedures shouldn’t be shrouded in mystery. Patients fighting cancer shouldn’t have to drive more than 75 miles round trip for radiation treatment. Expanding access to Medicaid last year was a huge step forward for Virginia families, but we need to do more to improve the delivery, quality, accessibility, and cost effectiveness of today’s healthcare.
Expanding Broadband Internet Access
With 70 percent of the world’s internet traffic flowing through Northern Virginia, it’s time to make reliable broadband access a reality across the entire Commonwealth. The slow pace of broadband expansion is a drag on local economic development and hurts our ability for innovation in areas like education and telemedicine. Without significant and aggressive investment in broadband, we can’t compete.
Next Generation Education
An estimated 65 percent of elementary school kids today will ultimately work in jobs that don’t exist yet. We need education pathways (like an emphasis on STEAM, innovation and entrepreneurship) that prepare them for a rapidly changing future. Affordable and accessible higher education is one way to get there – whether that’s in a 4-year degree program, at a community college, or in a technical training or apprenticeship program. And it all starts by fully funding our public school system.
Both Republicans and Democrats do it: once they get into power, they deliberately manipulate the legislative district boundaries to stay in power. It’s called gerrymandering, and it’s got to stop. Citizens should pick their representatives, not the other way around. It’s a conflict of interest for the legislature to draw its own district lines, which is why we need to move to a nonpartisan, independent process.
Getting Smart on Gun Sense
There are few topics more polarizing than gun rights. But studies show that we are more united than meets the eye. There are plenty of commonsense steps we can take right now to reduce unintended gun violence. Things like tax breaks for gun safes, restraining orders that stop domestic abusers and those in mental crisis from getting guns, and universal background checks. These issues have wide support across party lines.
GEtting Money OUt of Politics
We deserve elected officials who will fight for our communities, not simply vote for laws that benefit corporations who write the biggest check. We need to rewrite Virginia’s campaign finance laws, which are currently among the most lax in the nation. In the meantime, we’ve made the decision not to take campaign contributions over $2,500 from corporate PACs or registered lobbyists. And we don’t take any contributions from publicly-regulated utilities, where conflict of interest is especially problematic.