TRANSPARENCY IN GOVERNMENT &
ACCOUNTABILITY TO THE PEOPLE
There's one thing in particular every involved resident of Ohio's 16th District has noticed about our current Representative: he is absent. He does not do town halls, he does not meet constituents, and he does not respond to their calls or emails with anything other than a form letter. He has not cared one bit what the people think for a very, very long time - as is evidenced by his voting record.

I will change the way the people of the 16th interact with their representation in DC. I will host town halls as frequently as possible throughout the entire district, and I will do my very best to ensure that I or my staff provide real, meaningful answers to your inquiries with my office as often as possible. I will engage with consituents wherever I can - whether it's via Facebook, Twitter, town halls in the district, emails, or various campaign & official events.

I will make myself available to the people I represent and to do my best to accurately represent them in DC.

After all - I am running to represent the people, not special interest. I believe in a government of, by, and for the people, and I will do everything I can to remain accountable to the people over all else.
Healthcare
Medicare-for-all must be our ultimate goal, with a transitional period long enough to give insurance companies a chance to adapt their business models while guaranteeing coverage during the transition. In the meantime, the Affordable Care Act must be fully funded and supported. A great place to start would be by allowing Medicare or Medicaid buy-in in every region where there are no marketplace plans. This could easily transition to a widely-available public option, which could, in time, replace the private insurance industry altogether - saving the people in our country a great deal of money while delivering the best healthcare in the world. If every other modern country in the world has figured this out, why haven't we? And I won't be taking money from the healthcare industry, so you know I'll be fighting for you and your rights and your well-being.


Gerrymandering
The practice of partisan redistricting undermines our democracy and creates the political climate we deal with today, with hyper-partisan districts where only the most extreme candidates can win a race, and where the election is determined by a primary instead of a general election. While there is expected to be a ballot initiative in Ohio to deal with this problem, this shouldn't be allowed anywhere in the nation. Gerrymandering must be outlawed across the country and districts should be drawn through nonpartisan, independent panels.
Student Loan Debt
We cannot continue to sacrifice our future generations for the sake of profit at our universities - it damages our ability to foster our greatest minds and leaves students ruined for life with debt they cannot escape. Public universities should be tuition free, with the Department of Education offering loans to cover the rest of the costs of college - to all high school graduates, regardless of their parents' income or credit histories. Debt taken on by students, new and old, should be made affordable, with income-based repayment plans that allow for tax-free forgiveness after a set period of time. Furthermore, I want students to be engaged in their communities: to that end, I'd like to see credit given to loan repayment based on how much community service a student does in a given year.
Climate Change
It's real and we are dealing with consequences today, despite the bubble DC Republicans insist on living in. This is a generational issue that we must confront. We may seem safe from the more severe effects in Ohio, but studies done by the EPA show temperatures rising here too, which can amplify air pollution, lead to longer droughts in the summer (with 5-15 more days per summer over 95° within the next seventy years), and considerably warmer lake temperatures, which can lead to undrinkable tap water - as we seen in Toledo on August of 2014. And let's not forget the onset of polar vortices in the winter, or the cost of helping rebuild areas impacted by ever-strengthening storms on our nation's coasts!
To help combat climate change, we should immediately re-enter the Paris climate accord. Beyond that,  we should wean ourselves off of fossil fuels. We can do this by building a new, smart electrical grid (an important national security goal as well) and having the EPA enforce strict standards on automobile manufacturers to encourage a transition to electric vehicles. We could also create incentives to research tech to improve range via additional department of energy research grants and prizes, and boosting the prevalence of ARPA-E. Additionally, we should maintain current tax breaks for renewable energy infrastructure such as wind farms and solar plants, and encourage research into the tech to improve both. Lake Erie could be a vital energy source for the entire region if we provide the incentive we need to get it started.

LGBTQ Rights
I support equal rights and protection against discrimination for all people- be they gay, straight, transgender, queer, or anything else. This country was founded on the principle that all of us are equal. All of us. I will fight to ensure anti-discrimination laws reflect that.
Women's Rights
I support a woman's right to choose for herself, and am against the government getting involved with the intimate details of our lives. I support Planned Parenthood, and would be staunchly against defunding them. Similarly, I would support funding for clinics like Planned Parenthood that provide vital healthcare services to people who may not otherwise have access. And, of course, I support closing the wage gap: equal work should earn equal pay.
K-12 Education
The US and Ohio have fallen in world rankings in education, to the detriment of our nation's future. We must reform our educational systems to emphasize the importance of math and science (an emphasis on these fields gave us our victory in the Cold War), and we should consider, as a nation, making two-year college programs near-mandatory, in an analogous sense to how high school is treated today. For students who choose not to attend college, we should ensure access to vocational schools so that they can enter the workforce with the skills they need to guarantee a well-paying job with a future. 


Minimum Wage
No one working forty hours a week should earn so little they cannot afford rent. We must raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour and chain it to economic markers to provide a living wage for all Americans.
Parks & Natural Spaces
The greater Cleveland area, and especially our district, is fortunate enough to have several beautiful parks and natural spaces, both in and out of the metropark system. We should keep them the way they are so everyone can appreciate our region's natural beauty while they continue to be economic assets to the cities and counties where they reside. As a part of that desire to keep our public parks pristine, I oppose any mining or drilling operations in public parks.
 Similarly, I support initiatives that seek to clean up and protect our Great Lake, such as the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, which has has considerable success making Lake Erie an even greater asset to our region.
Animal Rights & Welfare
As a long-time volunteer at a local animal shelter, I place a lot of value in the protections the government affords animals, be they pets or otherwise. In Congress, I would help enact legislation that would protect our four-legged friends. I oppose breed-specific legislation (e.g. Pit Bull bans), puppy mills, and the inhumane treatment of animals in whatever form it may occur. I'd work to support legislation that further criminalizes cruelty to animals, and bans to cosmetics testing on animals and animal fighting (e.g. dog fighting or cock fighting).

Moreover, I would fight to enact legislation such as H.R. 2327, the Puppies Assisting Wounded Servicemembers (PAWS) Act, which would enable the Department of Veterans Affairs to help cover the costs of service dogs for vets with PTSD.