An Introduction to the Issues

Practically and philosophically, we need leaders with integrity, the integrity to make the best decisions for promoting the general welfare of EVERYONE within our borders, citizen and non-citizen alike.  Beyond our borders, in the realm of foreign policy, this leader should likewise consider all affected individuals and groups, and be thinking of their general welfare as well.

For too long, American electoral politics has found us quibbling over levels of experience and expertise.  For some Americans, only the fresh political outsider will do.  For others, the seasoned and highly educated insider is the only category of person suited to the job.  And yet, what have political newcomers like President Donald Trump and seasoned politicians like former Vice President Joe Biden ever done for us except make a mess of the responsibilities given to them?

And so, I hope to run a campaign based on my integrity as a person.  Beyond matters of numbers and figures and policy expertise, I hope to convince you that I will make the right call as a legislator in the United States Senate. 

 

But I can't do it without you.  It takes a village.  In this campaign, I want to tell stories.  Stories of my own personal life, and the lives of those who have impacted me.  And one day, I want to tell YOUR story on the floor of the United States Senate.

When reading through each issue area, bear in mind that I am not being intentionally vague, and that anything the comes across as "general" is not for lack of knowledge or expertise.  I've long believed that most politicians patronize their constituency by being unwilling to deliver to them the finer points of their legislative activities.  Instead, we get canned written and spoken statements chock full of political buzzwords, slogans, and dog whistles to certain groups.  Texas, I promise never to patronize you.

A final word on all of the above, especially as it pertains to issue areas and concrete legislative proposals:  bear in mind that US Senators have a multitude of professional staff, covering issue areas like Agriculture to Zoology and everything in between, and staff that are located in offices around the state and in Washington, DC.  These dedicated staff persons are part of an average US Senate office budget (Senators Official Personnel and Office Expense Account, or SOPOEA) of $3,467,971 per US Senator.  This covers salaries, office expenses, and mail for US Senators.

The point being that we never needed a Yale Law graduate to represent us.  The infrastructure of support provided to each US Senator is vast, and this is to say nothing of the multitude of other resources available to any Member of Congress, such as the Congressional Research Service housed within the Library of Congress. 

Most importantly, however, I will be relying on YOU, fellow Texans.  Not to tell me how and what to think, but to tell me WHY I should make a certain decision, to educate me, and to be my partner in constructing legislation that promotes the general welfare of ALL living things.

Issue Areas
 

Healthcare

Medicare for All, pure and simple.  It is a practical and moral imperative that everyone have access to an actual healthcare system, and not a disease care system.  It's what's good for people, and what's good for business.

Women in the Workplace and the World

We needed to have done all of the following yesterday.  It is unconscionable that half the population continues to suffer due to chronic historical and cultural violations of their essential rights as human beings.

We need to reaffirm Roe v. Wade by stopping the assault on this landmark Supreme Court decision at the municipal and state levels.  We need to end sexual harassment and assault everywhere it has been allowed (by leaders and by men) to thrive.  We need to have proportional representation of women in all sectors, public and private.

We need to have a serious and sweeping come-to-Jesus moment about how we allow, legislate, or participate in the gross world that women and girls confront each and every day.

Guns

The Second Amendment still stands.  But it depends on what guns you have or want to have, and why you have or want to have them.  Even a light reading of the Second Amendment will reveal that we are dealing with an outdated articulation of those once vital rights.  Whatever adjustments might ever be made to gun ownership policies, please know that I will always prioritize the safety of children and schools first.

Environment

It's not enough to leave it up to the major oil companies to self-regulate, apologize, or clean up their own mess.  And it's not helpful to shame individual, every-day people for not recycling.  We must target the major polluting industries for their pursuit of profit over planet.

On the level of infrastructure and the built-environment (our roads, bridges, transit systems, housing and development patterns), we need to start living closer to our everyday needs and sources of entertainment and fulfillment.  No more sprawling suburbs.  And no more hijacking of honest, hard-working, and historical small towns by a sea of corporate logos that destroy small business.  Some towns may need a WalMart, but not every town needs a complimentary suite of chain businesses.

 

© 2017 by Kenney Elkomous.  All photos of me, the City of Fort Worth, and the City of Marfa are by Walt Burns.

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