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O 82 my 82!

I’m back to work the week after the election, and I’m glad we know the situation. 82% of registered voters didn’t vote. 99.5% of those who voted did no research on the candidates for Congress, they just voted on party.

This is a Republic. A government by the people, but we aren’t governing. How do we fix that?

Over the next few weeks, I’ll shift from the campaign to how we the people can do a better job, and how I can support you with facts, ideas, and solutions. Only 3% voted for the people in 2018, but we can work for better turnout in 2020 and support candidates we can vote for in good conscience.

I’m not giving up on you, or on our nation. Doing better will take all of US.

Let’s get to work.

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Am I real?

We often read about candidates who claim to have degrees but really don’t. Most guard their privacy, and for good reason. My Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn are fairly old, and from before I considered running for Congress. Feel free to take a look. For members of the media (including vloggers/bloggers) I’ll furnish originals of my university transcript and a background check done by an employer some years ago, the most current one, which verified employment and education.

If there’s anything else you want to know, just ask. I want your concerns to be addressed, and for you to feel confident that what I say is true. Being open is the best way.

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Three Things

Money and Corruption

It’s the standard now, and reinforced by the two-party system, lots of fundraising and representatives are just telemarketers.

I’ll listen to anyone, and I think lobbyists have a valuable place, speaking for industries which employ hundreds of thousands of people. There are lobbyists for social justice, for nature, for things that matter to a lot of people, and I can’t ignore them, that would be wrong. But no money, gifts or promises should be involved. I’ll report all meetings openly and present their concerns to the people for comment.

In my work career, I’ve put my customers, my clients and my teams before myself. I’ll do the same in office.

Better Process and Communication
I’ll be communicating bill and budget facts and analysis to the people frequently and working in committees to produce quality legislation. My work requires me to consider unintended consequences and the sustainability of solutions, which I do by working with people to review proposals and plans, asking questions and questioning answers.

Respect
On the most difficult issues, I’ll maintain the same professionalism that’s been successful in decades at work. And my respect for others, including those who are not respectful, is deeply rooted in beliefs around the sanctity of all life, nature and this Nation’s attempt to unite many different peoples into a vibrant society which values both cooperation and individuality.

You May Ask

What about taxes, healthcare, poverty, abortion, women’s rights, LBQT, student loans?

I firmly believe that by approaching everything with respect and without self interest, the American People will do the right thing. Real freedom is doing what’s right with restraint.

We can solve problems much better with the right intentions, good process, and a respectful view of all life.

Please take a look at the longer presentation on the home page, too.

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Campaigning on your dollar and time

Every time I get a taxpayer-funded mailer with my congressman’s picture and no real information about what’s up for a vote, I think of how much it costs. I just got a quote for a mailer and it was $125,000. For just one. How many of these do you get per year, and they just go in the trash, right?

According to this article, which is worth reading:

The cost of running for office has skyrocketed. Experts predict the money chase will grow to upwards of $10 billion in 2016.

the average cost of a Congressional seat increased a whopping 344 percent. In 2012, House incumbents raised an average of $2,400 per day in the two-year cycle.

I’ve raised $0 so far, and will probably borrow a max of $7,000 on our home to run. A congressman raises that much in less than four days, and doesn’t have to pay it back.

I want us to win because you spread the word, not because you gave me your hard-earned money. And I’m definitely not taking money from special interests! Never, never, never.

“Leads to the dark side, that way does.”

More from the article:

In election cycles during the heat of battle, it might escalate to more than half of their time.” And for Representatives, elected every two years, it’s always the heat of battle.

But it doesn’t stop there. Members are now additionally required to raise money for the party and contribute to pools of funds at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) and the National Republican Campaign Committee (NRCC). As a member rises in seniority to committee chair or ranking member, their fundraising responsibilities multiply significantly. So just as they assume more jurisdiction, clout and a heavier legislative workload, they are simultaneously saddled with spending even more time raising even more money.

But as an independent, I don’t have to raise money for a party. And since I depend on you to spread the word, I don’t even have to raise money for myself. I’ll pay all the costs out of my salary, and if the two Parties spend millions to unseat me, you’ll just have to get louder.

Time spent running after big donors is time not spent figuring out a way to make a government program work more efficiently, writing a bill to create more jobs in America, or participating in an oversight committee hearing to evaluate the current challenges in Syria and Iraq.” Or North Korea or Yemen.

We’ve got more than 250,000 neighbors to reach in the 46th District. You have to work, get through school, parent children, maintain relationships, pursue happiness. Me too. We are too busy for this.

But we have to. For our own sake, spread the word. Tell everyone we have to light this candle and stop cursing the darkness. We’ve come to a critical point in history, can you feel it?

Now you know what drives me, and why I’m driving hard both at work and in this campaign, and why I’m so committed. We have to win in 2018, and it’s going to take 250,000 people to beat the System.

The incumbent has a multi-billion dollar Party funded and backed by Google, Facebook, Hollywood, and the elite of both Coasts.

I have you, the people. I’m betting my money on you, and you’re betting your time and talent on me.

Let’s go. Siempre ¡adelante!

http://www.newsweek.com/why-do-congressmen-spend-only-half-their-time-serving-us-357995

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Answers to questions – Part 1

I knows it’s hard to spread the word when you get questions and you worry about what you’ll say.

I’ve been talking to folks I meet on the street, workers in fast food places (I eat too much of it, I know), and even in parking lots. Here are a few questions I get, and how I answered. Maybe this will encourage you to chat people up as well?

#1 – What party are you?
I’m neither Republican nor Democrat, I’m independent. After the 2016 election I realized neither represents most of the people, and both are taking money from special interests. I’m not taking money, and will never take money. I’m here for us, the regular people who work, who go to school, who struggle to find a way to live.

#2 – What’s your ideology?
I’m not a believer in ideology. The monk Thomas Merton once said that “an ideology is a rule made automatic.” Nothing for me is automatic, I question things, even the obvious at times. I don’t agree completely with any party, and I don’t fit the neat classifications I’m told they teach in school. But I do believe that life is precious, that we should respect all life, the environment, everywhere and at all times. We should be kind, and when we must oppose others, use the greatest discretion, mercy and respect possible without neglecting justice or failing to protect the innocent.

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Getting to 100 friends of a money-free Congress

We are at 97 friends of a non-partisan, money-free* Congress. I really believe at least 200 million people in the U.S. (not just citizens) have to be sick of the way things are.

We need to show it’s possible to beat the system by using the framework the founders laid down. Not a revolution in the government but a revolution in the people, an awakening to the possibilities within our grasp. No marches, no celebrities, no marketing, no experts in activism.

Unlike many grassroots candidates, I’ve worked at tough jobs requiring business and technical knowledge for 35+ years, worked closely with people of many cultures, raised a family and put myself through the masters degree program at CSULB at the same time with a 3.9.

Just us, spreading the word, using the very system the Democrats, Republicans, Hollywood, the media, and big business have perverted for their own ends.

Isn’t this a message worth spreading? Then tell everyone, by every means at your disposal. Share it beyond the district, let everyone know we are done with the past, and want to do it right.

(Please like the page, post this blog every way you can!)

Go spread the word if you believe it’s time. I do.

*I’m not taking donations from lobbies, businesses, or special interest groups. I’m spending $2,000 I can’t afford because I believe we can do this. All I’m asking from you is to spread the word.

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Who likes money?

Looking down this older list, you’d almost think Democrats and Republicans were the same party.

This doesn’t include the clever ones who avoided detection, and in 2016 the Supreme Court added protection for Congressional bribery prevents prosecution in the future.

But it’s not all cash. Special interests can provide vacations (fact finding!), jobs or referrals for spouses, children, allies, investment info. If it’s private investment, it doesn’t count as insider trading.

If you can get me to Washington, yiu can bet my wife and children will be suspicious of any “lucky breaks” that come their way. We’ve already discussed it, and I’m confident in their ethics. But an independent from the 46th isn’t likely to attract much money anyway, an advantage to being from a hard-working district!

Have you thought about how congressional staff can profit by controlling access to Congress? Or leaving things out of a report?

So many ways to make money through public service.