I’m a lifelong Republican. I’m pro-life. I support the Second Amendment and the entire Constitution. I’ve read the Republican Platform many, many times and believe it is a roadmap to a stronger America. As a veteran who served in multiple war zones, I’m deeply concerned about our readiness in the face of growing military competition and tension around the globe. And as a father, I want what is best for all families. Here are some of my thoughts on the issues:
Food and Agriculture
Food and Agriculture are big business to our state, contributing over $40 billion to our economy, employing almost 173,000 people. Colorado products are sold to over 130 countries.
This sector of industry taps into Colorado’s impressive pool of skilled workers. I think it is interesting – and an asset – that the food and agriculture industry has a larger share of employees between the ages of 55 and 64 years old.
Federal food and agricultural programs and policies obviously leave a big footprint on our state’s industry’s success. And yet, Colorado is not even represented on the House Agriculture Committee while some states have two! It is time that Colorado’s farmers, ranchers and food producers to gain a seat on the committee again, and if elected I will do what I can to make that happen.
My wife Amy and I are both military veterans, having proudly served in the US Air Force. Matters affecting veterans span a lot of territory – everything from concern for the well-being of those who recently in uniform to concern for the support of our oldest veterans. After making sacrifices to serve our country, we owe it to provide the best possible medical and mental health care to the men and women who served. The continuing debacle at the Aurora veteran’s hospital is just one example of the need for better resources and oversight to properly honor our debt to veterans.
Access to appropriate housing and health care and the stability of Medicare and Social Security are the important issues, specific issues for the senior community of District 4. Providing protection from fraud and abuse committed against older Americans is a great concern of mine.
It is no secret that Colorado, like most if not all of our states, has pressing infrastructure needs. Our rapid growth has only added to the list of projects in need of development or completion. Yet, transportation is a one-size-fits-all matter in our state. Most rural areas have different problems than the clogged urban corridors. I have spent the past decade advocating for transportation issues and have participated in region-specific planning and education promotion to help bring what is needed to Colorado.
It is my experience that the creation of partnerships between the private sector, state and local governments and the federal government lead to successful projects for the densely populated metro areas. However, rural areas often lack the traffic counts needed to create the public-private partnerships available to metro areas. As your representative, it is imperative that I use my experience to support the different urban and rural transportation needs and the different funding channels for each.
Jobs and Economy
Overall, Colorado is enjoying the economic growth seen on a national level. The recently passed tax reform law has resulted in the repatriation of funds from overseas and increased bonuses and paychecks for millions of Americans. This is the same tax bill that my opponent tried to block from consideration by the House of Representatives last December.
CD 4 is home to many of our state’s highly-skilled workers. I will be a strong champion of our flagship industries like telecommunications, aerospace, and food and agriculture. and I will especially be watchful of the continued lag of economic growth in rural Colorado vs. the front range due to agricultural commodity price drops.