The Democrat Party we once knew and loved has disappeared. Helping the bottom 50% and saving the middle class is no longer a priority, while support for the wealthiest, large corporations, and unlimited military spending has grown.

Our Democrats in Congress must return to traditional Democratic values!

The 1st District is not a 50/50-Rep/Dem district that requires compromise and watered down political positions. The 1st District is a majority-Democrat district. Therefore, our Democratic representative should not be afraid to lead the fight for traditional Democratic principles nor be influenced by big donors.

In the 1st District, support for unions, the steel industry, transportation and the environment are all very important. However, there are also very important local/national issues where the 1st District Representative must be a leader, not a passive bystander.

By the People, For the People

Big money is corrupting the political process. The current 1st District representative will once again raise about one million dollars in campaign contributions for the two year election cycle. The majority of those contributions - about 2/3 - come from corporations, military defense contractors, political action committees (PAC's) and special interest groups. Of the individual contributions our current representative has received over the years, many are large $5,000 and $10,000 contributions from Northwest Indiana Republicans.

Lobbyists and big donors have taken control of Congress. The bottom 50% of U.S. citizens do not have lobbyists or millions to contribute to politicians. The Democrats in Congress must take on the responsibility to truly support the interests of lower and middle income citizens.

"In the year 2016, with a political campaign finance system that is corrupt and increasingly controlled by billionaires and special interests, I fear very much that, in fact, government of the people, by the people, and for the people is beginning to perish in the United States of America.

We cannot allow that to happen." - Bernie Sanders

Income and wealth inequality

Income and wealth inequality is a major problem in Northwest Indiana, just as it is nationwide. Why are Democrats in Congress so shy about discussing a $15 minimum wage which is clearly consistent with traditional Democrat principles? While Congress passes legislation to save taxes for large corporations and the top 20%, and rewrite laws to help banks, even the Democrats in Congress cannot find the courage to increase the minimum wage for the bottom 50%.

The $15 minimum wage has been implemented in various cities in the U.S. and has been successful. If it were implemented uniformly across the U.S., every business would be in an equal position. Americans should not be required to have their taxes used to support welfare for employees at Wal-Mart and other big corporations. These large corporations have become the true 'welfare queens'.

"There is something profoundly wrong when we have a proliferation of millionaires and billionaires at the same time as millions of Americans work longer hours for lower wages and we have the highest childhood poverty rate of nearly any developed country on earth." - Bernie Sanders

Health care should be available to all Americans

The U.S. is the wealthiest nation in the world and yet the Democrats in Congress are afraid to discuss Medicare for all. Nearly all industrialized nations in the world have universal health-care for all and it is less expensive per person than in the U.S. Millions of Americans cannot get or cannot afford health-care even with the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA was only a start in the right direction. For the working poor, even with the ACA subsidy, the premiums are too expensive and the large deductibles and co-pays are simply unaffordable.

"If the goal of health-care reform is to provide comprehensive, universal health care in a cost-effective way, the only honest approach is a single-payer approach." - Bernie Sanders