What if I was running...
The Senate and State elections are coming up, and with all the political campaigning going around it got me thinking: what if I war running? What would my platform be?
My first priority would be Homeland Security. I'd stand for closing the borders while we as a nation can do the following:
Secure both land borders, and secure the ports. As my friend Marisol aptly said the other day, if your toilet is overflowing what is the first thing you do? Close the llave de paso or the valve faucet. Then you fix the toilet. Before we as a nation think of any immigration reform, we need to ensure our borders and ports. Once we have control of the influx of illegals, then we can proceed to look at how we will solve the situation of the ones inside.
Overhaul the Immigration system to ensure to the best of our abilities that visas are being extended to "safe" people. I would take a closer look at all visas being granted to people of Middle Eastern origin and Muslims. It may not be the political correct stance - but who wants to be politically correct?
As Christopher Shays (R-CT) said this morning on the Today Show, I would make the government draft a realistic and achievable timeline for transfer of patrolling and security to the Iraq Forces. Iraq has best worked when they've had deadlines to meet. It is human nature, we work hard to meet deadlines, we goof off when we have more time. Sense of urgency, that is what is needed here.
I would be in favor of placing term limits, and also limits on remittances sent to other countries - I'd be againts remittances to governments we do not support or have no relations with (yes that includes Cuba).
Speaking of Cuba, I'd keep in the embargo and repeal the wet foot dry foot law as well as the Cuban adjustment act. To put pressure on the Cuban government, I'd start treating Cubans just like any other immigrants. Perhaps if they cannot come here, they will do something to bring change in Cuba. Anyone who applied for political asylum would not be able to go back to their county until the government doing the persecution was gone. So no trips to Cuba unless your family is dying. I know this might not make me very popular but it's my opinion.
I'd take on the Welfare system and propose bills that would nudge people back to work and not to be dependent on Welfare. For example. I would limit the amount of kids that the goverment will hand out benefits for. No, I would not make it retroactive. But once it was effective, government would only hand out benefits for more than two babies. As such, I would also provide birth control and education free of charge so people can take ownership of their family planning.
While I'm not much of a socialist, I do agree on two things - healthcare and education. So I'd vouch for some sort of healthcare reform - not necessary free healthcare - but work towards reducing the frivolity surrounding the malpractice suits which has a lot to do with rising costs in healthcare. I'd work towards setting limits of awards, and raising the bar on proving malpractice. I'd also hunt down the lawyers and clinics that make a killing of accident fraud. Lastly, I would create a healthcare system for the poor. The less you earn, the less you pay - and force by law all doctors and hospitals to accept it. At least state hospitals.
Now education. We have a problem not only with urban or bad neighborhood school, we have a problem with the good schools too. I'd be in favor of improving the quality of education in the schools so that students are better prepared for college. While not taking all the money away from the more affluent schools, I would redistribute some of the money to the not so affluent schools, so they have a chance of improving. In addition, I would make a law that prohibits teenagers from dropping out of high school - in short, being a dropout would be a felony. Come on, who at 16 can take such a decision?
I understand the government has limited responsibility and we as citizens have to take more responsibility for our kids education - so that would be part of my platform too.
And how would I do all of this? I'd vote in favor of taxing the wealthy higher, and maintaining the tax cuts for those of us not so wealthy. I would not bend to any special interest groups. Of course, that wouldn't make me very popular, which is probably the reason why I'm not running.
So, what about you? What would be your platform?