If you want to blame everything that’s wrong with our government, look no further than your elected official, John Carter. It is Congress that funds the programs and Congress that makes the laws and Congress that makes the rules on how our government runs. It’s no great secret that many government programs are initiated and pushed by special interest groups. Many of these programs have no benefit or impact to our district. With special interest groups lobbying for these programs and the special interest funding the campaign account of Carter, it’s not hard to figure out who is pulling his strings. If you want a government that is focused on what it is supposed to be doing and reflects what the people expect and want, then reforming government starts no further than your representative. As your next Congressman, let me be clear: I work for you! You are the ones that will be putting my feet to the fire to get things done. I do not take money from special interest groups, so they will not be pulling my strings. You will have regular town halls and you will be able to contact me to get an appointment. Everyone deserves and everyone will get personal attention. I take ownership of the issues from day one. I am not the type that likes to play the blame game. I get the facts, think things through, get input from our communities, and come up with an informed and well thought out solution. If government is going to be working for you, you will need a Congressman that works for you and only you.
Why on earth are we the only civilized, industrialized, and modernized nation that does not offer paid family leave? For a county whose major political parties have touted their family values for decades, there has been little to show for this at the national level. It is good that workers have legal protection with the Family Leave Act for 12 weeks, but it is unpaid leave. For the 99% of the Americans that make this country work, they cannot afford to be without pay for 12 weeks. Thankfully, many businesses and municipalities are taking the lead on this issue and offering paid family leave. However, no American worker should have to choose between taking care of a loved one or earning a pay check. Making paid family leave mandatory is fundamental to our culture and makes economic sense. It is the pro-business norm of the 21st century economy and workforce. While many businesses do offer paid vacation, there are still millions of Americans who do not have this benefit. Taking time off to enjoy the fruits of your labor is very important to your own health, wellbeing, and the business you work for. Congressman Carter’s outdated notions on this issue hurts our local economy and our families. Thankfully, your next Congressman, Mike Clark, grew up with these Texas values and knows that these benefits are very pro-business, pro-worker, and pro-family
Can we finally stop this ongoing nonsense with discrimination because of your skin color, ethnicity, culture, religion, gender, marriage choices, economic status, and so forth, once and for all? These are artificial barriers put up by the few that make it seem like the early 19th century instead of the early 21st century. Congressman John Carter has consistently voted to make many Americans have less rights simply because he does not agree with their religion, culture, gender identity or marriage choices. We must clearly state in American civil rights law that no person will suffer discrimination because of sexual orientation, gender identity, veteran status, or political affiliation. Our American LGBTQIA and immigrant neighbors must have the opportunities and freedoms we all cherish. Diversity is key to business and economic growth. Diversity is vital to American culture. Carter’s voting records on this issue makes us less American. Let’s make sure that marriage equality has a lawful meaning in our community and work-place. We must make it meaningful and tangible when we say Equality for ALL. Therefore, let us enshrine in our laws that every American is guaranteed the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” I was happy to have earned the endorsement and support of the Stonewall Democrats of Central Texas in 2016 and look forward to their support as well as many others in 2018!
It’s the role of the President to set foreign policy. It’s the role of Congress to debate and fund those policies. Neither has occurred. With Trump, it is his tweet of the night. With Carter, it is his silence. Both inactions make us look weak and clueless to the world. Diplomacy is key to setting relations with other countries around the world, friend or foe. Effective diplomacy gives us beneficial trade that helps our economy and strong defenses to help keep us safe. It is the deputies of the State Department that coordinate the critical grunt work on foreign policy. Together with their counter parts in the Department of Defense, they play the critical role of getting things done behind the scenes. Neither department has those deputy roles filled. That makes us extremely vulnerable.
Trump had a unique opportunity with North Korea’s nuclear program when he took office by using the strategies and partners from the Iran nuclear deal. However, his ego has not only undermined those efforts, but his war rants and tweets have only added to the insecurity and threats that North Korea possesses. Meanwhile, Carter remains silent. Carter’s silence condones those actions by Trump. Having ZERO foreign policy goals on Syria has only exacerbated an ongoing human tragedy in that area. Our NATO allies, who once looked at us as rock solid, now question the long-term support from a reliable friend.
Trump blames Congress for making things worse in our country with the Russia inquires. Republicans and Democrats disagree on much, but fight to make our country better, even if they disagree on how. It’s no secret that Russia wants to divide Americans. Their purpose is quite clear: to reduce our influence around the world. Trump’s tweets and rants only seek to further divide Congress and the nation. Despite what Trump says, it’s not Congress to blame. Russia wants to divide the U.S. and 45 keeps promoting this divide like an ignorant child. Russia and Trump only win if they can divide us. Authoritarians only rule when citizens do not stand united and only when our representatives, like Carter, look the other way
A 21st century transportation and infrastructure is the essential backbone for our economy and community. Workers, families, and businesses must have a reliable and functional transportation system. We all know that our current road system is dysfunctional and always in a state of construction and reconstruction. I-35 and HWY 190 seems to be under this constant state of construction with no end in sight. It takes years to complete one project that’s insufficient once completed. Carter’s lack of focus on this issue has led to a bogged down road system. A representative is supposed to bring more federal dollars to help fix our transportation needs, not bleed them away to other needless items. Let's focus on building it right the first time to make it useful for many decades to come instead of just a few years. Our focus should be on effectively and efficiently moving people, goods and services from place to place. This includes high speed and light rail that will help spur a sustainable economic growth for our area. It includes a modern busing system for people to get around our growing cities. It also includes having modern, safe, and efficient airports. Let's also not forget the value of having safe and accessible walkways and bike paths in our communities. Putting more of our existing federal gas tax dollars into long-term and practical transportation systems instead of pouring endless amounts of concrete is the path towards a 21st century transportation system. Are you sick and tired of windshield chips on your car from road construction? Let future Congressman Clark help chart a new path and work towards a practical and meaningful transportation plan.
82 years ago, President Franklin Roosevelt’s signature on the Social Security Act guaranteed an income for retirees. Having a safe and secure retirement system is what our hard-working Americans not only expect, but deserve. Enjoying the fruits of your labor is a basic human expectation. Social Security is a large portion of many Americans’ retirement incomes. We must do everything we can to ensure that Social Security is there for many generations to come. Raising the cap on Social Security is an easy and fair way to keep the program funded for future generations to come. We must eliminate the "double dipping" penalty on Social Security benefits being imposed on public sector employees, a penalty our own members of Congress do not have to suffer. Giving a REAL cost of living adjustment is way, way, overdue! We must thwart any attempt by Congressman John Carter, who receives multiple government funded retirement plans, to privatize Social Security. It’s a 3 trillion-dollar fund that you know hedge funds would love to get their hands on. Privatizing Social Security would have all the benefits for money fund managers who make their fortune from fees. It would have ZERO benefits for you! Having your retirement bought and sold to the highest bidder on Wall Street is not the way to safeguarding our future. It’s a short-lived scheme that has no long-term solutions to your retirement future. Privatizing makes absolutely no economic or business sense. We must also strengthen and enforce the rules and regulations that oversee our other retirement programs. Our 401k's and pension plans should not be at the mercy of high risk or careless investments. Promoting and encouraging retirement benefits for future retirees is essential to having happy and productive retirement life style. Future Congressman Clark will show leadership and make sure that our retirement system is safe and secure.
Let’s face it. The Citizens United ruling by the Supreme Court has thoroughly corrupted our financial campaign system. The notion that corporations are people is just beyond bizarre. It opens the door to “entities” being able to vote, hold office, and do all the inalienable rights that we have as individuals. This ruling has also tainted the PAC system. No one knows where the money is coming from, how much is being contributed, and where it is going. It gives a whole new meaning to a black hole. Limits and full disclosures on campaign contributions means that no one person or entity is controlling our candidates and elected officials. It helps to ensure that that democracy is free from the influence of the few. Campaign limits have no baring or restrictions on 1st amendment free speech rights. In fact, it ensures that everyone has the same equal voice in our political process. John Carter accepts tons of big money from outside District 31. The outside influence of special interests has made him anything but a representative of our area. There are two paths to fix Carter’s special interest influence. A constitutional amendment to fix the Citizens United ruling and/or appointing Supreme Court justices that will overturn the ruling. My campaign has never taken outside special interest big money. It was that way in 2016 and will stay that way in 2018! The people of Williamson and Bell County are the ones that I listen to. They are the ones that I will represent in Washington come January 2019!
There have been many positive results from unions that we often take for granted. Thanks to unions, we have better and safer working conditions, a 40-hour work week, vacation pay, health insurance plans, and retirement benefits. These are valuable benefits that have not only made our workers more productive, but have helped our economy grow. Child labor and forced 7-day work weeks are no longer legal. Even as we’ve made great progress in our working conditions and benefits, there are political efforts to undermine all the labor progress made over the last century. Even as this topic is being posted, there are states like Missouri that are usurping local control over cities like Kansas City. This is not only morally wrong, it amounts to enforced economic oppression. Kansas City, and many other cities across the nation, are taking the lead in making sure workers have living wages. When workers are considered as the most valuable asset, businesses are more prosperous. Congressman John Carter’s anti-worker stance goes against everything we value as Americans. It hurts our families, our communities, and businesses. Supporting workers’ rights is fundamental to our economic system and something I’ll be more than happy to promote as your next Congressman.
Longtime residents of Central Texas know that when it comes to rain, we live in feast or famine. We typically get an overwhelming amount of rainfall within a very short window that will fill up our lakes and replenish our aquifers. That’s usually followed by many years of drought. The extremes of record rainfall and extended droughts are only getting worse as our climate continues to change. That not only puts a strain on our local water resources, but a strain on local budgets when trying to plan and maintain water infrastructure. Let’s not forget what extended and extreme droughts do to our native plants and wildlife which are critical to living here. Congressman John Carter’s actions and policies of use all you can and waste all you want is so anti-conservative in nature that it is beyond the scope of common sense. Turning a blind eye to those that contaminate our water sources is wrong in every human way. Making the most out of what little you have and protecting it is a practical approach when it comes to our water resources and fits the realm of conservation. Promoting businesses and homes to reuse gray water for irrigation is an efficient, effected, and conservative way to use our water. Allowing homes and businesses to collect and reuse rain water is a cost effective and sustainable way to manage our most precious resource in Central Texas. Constructing green buildings is big business and Texas can be the leader in those efforts. This is one area in government where we can remove archaic rules, regulations or laws that prohibit progress on this issue. We must also promote the use of native plants in our landscapes. Not only will our landscapes look fantastic, we won’t be burdened by those high water bills. This means less of our tax dollars being spent on larger water pipes, pumping stations, water treatment, reservoirs and wells. It also means less strain on our water sheds and aquifers. Coming from a family of farmers and ranchers, water conservation is second nature to me. Water conservation has always been part of my family’s way of life and part of my character. As Congressman Clark, you will have someone in office who knows and respects the true value of water.
Having an affordable place to live is essential to a family's economic foundation. It represents the beginnings of wealth and future prosperity. Retirees and the soon to be retired are finding it challenging, if not impossible, to live in the same place they have for many years. Generations of families who have lived in Williamson or Bell county are finding themselves being displaced, as well. The overreliance of our state system on property taxes only exacerbates an ongoing crisis. As a growing economy leads to a growing housing market, higher rent and mortgage payments will follow. Promoting quality and affordable housing is critical to a sustainable and growing market. There is nothing wrong with helping those who help sustain the market. Low interest loans and down payment programs are critical to fund and protect consumers. Congressman John Carter has consistently cut these programs meant to help families find a home and contribute to our economy. Smart community and regional planning is essential to having people live and work near their communities. Having industry and business in our communities that support good wages is fundamentally important to supporting our living standard. Carter has taken political contributions from big business PACS with no presence in District 31. Many of these businesses outsource our jobs overseas while the purchasing power of the middle class from our district continues to fall. We must have representation in Congress that reverses this trend and helps promote more businesses that startup and grow here. Teachers, firefighters, and police officers deserve to live in the same communities where they work and serve. Future Congressman Clark will be the natural leader on this issue in Congress.