WHY I'M RUNNING
Through my career as a Naval Officer, I've learned "If it's not broke, don't fix it!" THAT'S why I'm running. It's broke! Too many of our political leaders spend too much time denigrating others and manipulating the media for personal gain, stonewalling crucial agenda items due to personal differences, and focusing on re-election time and time (and time) again. Our elected officials have stopped reaching out to their constituents and learning about their concerns. Over time, we have come to accept this as the norm. We must rebaseline our expectations and demand more from our elected officials. And by "more", I mean the basics: two-way communications, in-person town halls, face-to-face meetings, less "pay-to-play", compromise, and much less hypocrisy.
WHY I'M RUNNING:
1. I believe that the Federal Government should spend no more than it takes in.
2. I believe strongly in states' rights.
3. I believe that the Federal Government has a key role to play in our Nation's Security and Economic growth, but any such role should be laser-sharp focused and extremely limited. If you need a ladder, I'll gladly give you one...and maybe another along the way. But I'd really prefer to teach you how to build your own ladder and then perhaps you, too, might be able to pay it forward. However, I know that there are some folks that due to circumstances far beyond their control will need help, either briefly or long-term. Let's stop worrying about the small stuff, and figure out the best way to provide help. Our nation is plagued with "First-World Problems". I don't care what design the local coffee company puts on its coffee cup. I care about the ability of the local coffee company to come out from ridiculous regulations so they can prosper, employ hard-working people, and contribute to the economy.
4. I believe in a separation between church and state; neither should tell the other how to operate. I also believe that the two are inextricably linked: Our government sure could use some prayers right about now, and the government needs to always defend the freedom of religion.
5. Any legislation introduced needs to be approached with a very critical eye and thoroughly evaluated for both its intended and unintended consequences. In the past several years we've been ramrodded with key pieces of legislation that were worked behind closed doors for "our benefit". We need to accept that no single piece of legislation is perfect. And what is passed today will undoubtedly need to be refined in the future. Our government is not designed to be "fast"...there is no reason to rush any legislation through without all due consideration. Were Congress truly effective, we would rarely have to consider any huge, unwieldy, multi-hundred page legislation behind closed doors. Rather we would have continual, manageable, transparent modifications of what's already in place based on the feedback from constituents.
6. Border security is a multifaceted issue that will NEVER go away. If the 8th Congressional District as a whole deems that a really big wall along the Southern border will solve all of our problems and keep us safe, then I'll respect that. But I will tell you upfront that I believe a the concept of a really big wall offers a false sense of security and is a gross waste of government funds. I DO believe that there are highly trafficked sections of our border that could benefit from strategically placed barriers to impede illegal crossings, and the locations of those strategically placed barriers are best defined by the men and women who are charged with our border security. The funds required for simply building a really big wall will drastically limit key protection-enabling equipment, sensors, & training for those on the front lines of border security. Let us not forget that we also have an East & West Coast, a Northern boundary, and thousands of airborne potential-immigrants a day. Just because the problem is tough does not mean that we should sacrifice logic for a quick fix.
7. I DO recognize that we are a nation of immigrants, but it's important to recognize that while most of us came from somewhere else, over time our families assimilated to the American culture. It's unrealistic for anyone to expect to relocate to another country and and prosper without knowledge and respect of the local culture, language, and laws. I agree that we occasionally need to look out for the "little guy/gal" to make sure their rights are not trampled on, but it's not realistic for the "little guy/gal" to try and avoid any compromise whatsoever in order to assimilate to the American lifestyle. America is a country continually being built by its citizens. While it may be tough to predict where we'll be as a Nation in the next 30 years, it is possible to clearly define where we do NOT want to be. Broad, sweeping, irrational exclusion of anyone is never a good answer, but rather we need to incorporate mutually beneficial, risk-minimizing immigration policies that can flex to help those in peril without compromising our national security. For illegal immigrants, amnesty does not work. And forcing a younger generation to pay for the illegal actions of their elders is a method currently in practice in North Korea. Is there a simple answer? No. We need to incentivize legal immigration, de-incentivize illegal immigration, and taking it one step further, perhaps highlight on a global scale the conditions of the countries that are driving people to flee.
8. Public Education. Some of my opponents are staunch advocates for "School Choice" and continually try to justify the diversion of funds from Arizona's public school systems. This is very unfortunate and extremely short sighted. We must ensure a laser-sharp focus on the challenges that beset our public education system in order to provide a rock solid infrastructure (both physical structures and professional expertise) and establish an unshakeable foundation for our children, teens and the incredible teachers from whom we demand so much!
9. As a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and a 24-year veteran of the Navy, I have been able to compare our way of life to that of several other countries. I can tell you that we have it good. Yes we have problems that need to be addressed, but we have it good. And the opportunities that we as individuals have are astounding, but quite often overlooked because of the work involved. Very little takes the place of hard work and dedication.
10. Looking forward to the possibility of continued public service, and capitalizing on my background as a Naval officer, I believe in the importance of inspiring and empowering the next generation of leaders. As we work to elect our next Congressional Representative, please be assured that I'm not looking for a tenured career in politics. That's not how the system should work. I'd like to get in, elevate your voice, make a beneficial impact on behalf of Arizona's 8th Congressional District, and start inspiring and empowering the next generation of leaders.
If you respect what I'm saying, please help me get my name on the ballot for the August 2018 primary election via this link to the Arizona Secretary of State electronic ballot (I'm trying to collect 5,000 signatures!):
The AZSOS site will ask you for your Driver License Number only to verify your eligibility to electronically sign my petition.
Signing my petition does NOT commit your vote...it's only to have my name to appear on the ballot.
Map of Arizona's 8th Congressional District