Election 2014: Meet the Democratic candidates for U.S. Congressional 5th District
Relevant experience: Member of Congress, 2009-present; state senator, 2003-08; state representative, 1997-2003; co-chair, Joint Committee on Ways & Means; Canby Planning Commission
Why are you running? Im running to help create jobs in our state. While the depths of the recession may be over, too many families are struggling to find living wage jobs in our great state. I want to continue my work to bring jobs back to our rural communities and finish important infrastructure projects like the upgrade at the Woodburn interchange.
What do you think are the three biggest issues facing your district? The three biggest issues are jobs, immigration reform and our declining infrastructure.
What do you think are the three biggest issues facing the Woodburn area? I think the issues facing Woodburn are similar to the issues facing the rest of our district.
1. We urgently need more jobs.
2. We need to improve and make significant investments to our transportation and infrastructure. This will not only create much needed jobs in our state, but it will also ensure our business and farmers can get their goods to market.
3. I think all citizens are worried about our fiscal situation in regard to the debt and deficit.
What three things would you like to see accomplished if elected? 1. One of my top priorities since coming to Congress has been to take a proactive approach to changing the way we manage our forests. Through my work on the farm bill weve made several significant changes that will have a positive impact on the health of our forests, which will result in more jobs in the woods in Oregon, and improved forest health.
My top priority, however, is continuing the hard work to resolve the ongoing issues facing our counties and our O&C timber lands. Weve passed a bipartisan bill in the U.S. House that would aid our rural communities while preserving some of our national treasures.
2. Passing a comprehensive immigration reform bill to help our economy recover, protect families and reduce our deficit.
3. Id like a much bolder transportation and infrastructure bill to pass, to help get folks back to work.
Name three reasons why you are the best candidate for the job:
1. Ive proven I can deliver for the Fifth District, from securing the NOAA fleet in Newport, to getting funds for the improvements at the Woodburn interchange, to my work on the farm bill that resulted in record improvements to the specialty crop and forest titles that are crucial to our rural and regional economy here in the valley. Ive always put Oregon first.
2. Ive been a bipartisan leader in the Congress. While too many of my colleagues are engaging in petty, partisan disputes, Ive co-chaired the No Labels legislative advisory board to bring both sides together to solve problems on our nations behalf. Congress needs more problem solvers and folks are who are willing to work in a constructive and bi-partisan manner. I feel that I have proven to be the type of member who can do just that.
3. Since taking office, weve been able to return more than $4 million in delayed Social Security and veterans benefits to citizens across the Fifth Congressional District. Weve helped countless individuals navigate the complexities of dealing with our federal government.
Hobbies/Interests: Horseback riding, target shooting, reading.
Relevant experience: I worked as an advocate for victims of medical malpractice wrongful death for four years
Why are you running? I read that Rep. Schrader voted no to raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 with the Republicans on March 15, 2013, and was steadfast with this unless he flip-flops now that we have a primary. If you want people off welfare, food stamps, and if you want women to be self-sufficient, we need to pass this bill. Corporations will adjust salaries, benefiting the entire economy.
What do you think are the three biggest issues facing your district? 1. I will protect your clean air, water and the environment. Rep. Schraders logging interest tried to sneak an attachment to the farm bill, clear-cut logging of 1.5 million federal acres of Oregon forests but he failed. Rep. Schrader voted yes to Toxic Coal Ash HR 2218, voting with Republicans again, we saw what happened to the rivers in North Carolina. 2. I support closing the tax loopholes that allow two-thirds of corporations to pay Nnocorporate income tax. Corporations avoided paying $150 billion last year with off-shore accounts and so on. The states lost $42 billion with tax avoidance. This is money that America really needs after the banks and Wall Street almost brought the U.S. to her knees. Subsidies should be for the good of the people not corporate greed. 3. The Trans-Pacific Trade Agreement or TPP is described as NAFTA on steroids. Americans will be competing with Vietnams wages. The TPP allows corporations to sue governments if they differ. As another example, the pharmaceutical industry can sue Third World countries because their citizens drugs are too cheap. Rep. Schraders pharmaceutical contributions: $61,500 per MapLight-Money and Politics. The TPP is also secret; only the Congress and corporate giants that helped write it are allowed to see the TPP.
What do you think are the three biggest issues facing the Woodburn area? 1. Traffic. Roads need to keep up with population. 2. Small business and family farms are the engines of growth, and I will help them get more affordable rates in financing like the corporations get. Corporate farms seemed to do fine in the farm bill, but the family farms, including organic farms, seem to get last-minute, what I consider, breadcrumbs. 3. Top notch education for all children. Affordable college or vocational schools, and as our students are over their heads in college debt, I would support payback with scheduled payments at 1 percent of their income.
What three things would you like to see accomplished if elected? 1. Social Security is solvent until 2038 per the Congressional Budget Office in 2011. Republicans are not reporting facts. I would support S500 which would keep the Social Security Trust Fund solvent for at least 75 years, asking the wealthiest Americans to contribute their fair share by removing the cap on Social Security contributions. 2. To close corporate tax loopholes that cost America $150 billion and states $42 billion in tax dollars. 3. Get jobs back in America.
Name three reasons why you are the best candidate for the job: 1. I support the Affordable Care Act; all Americans deserve health care. Rep. Schraders Blue Dog Coalition is supported by the Healthcare and Insurance Lobby, (the most powerful in the U.S.) who do not want change as they would do anything to protect their assets. Schraders Healthcare Professionals = $96,000, Insurance = $60,161 campaign contributions. In 2009, the Blue Dogs (same year Schrader joined) blocked the house from voting for a single payer option in our health care reform exactly as the Tea Party is doing today. 2. Trust. Do you trust Schrader? 3. Brown will vote for you, not corporate interests.
Hobbies/Interests: I am a member of the American Wild Horse and Burro Preservation and the Sierra Club. My German shepherd, Charlie Brown, and I love to walk in our beautiful Oregon parks. I am still learning about gardening and loving it.