Many Minnesotans have experienced huge increases in the cost of their health insurance the last few years. In 2017 we passed legislation that provided direct premium relief for people with skyrocketing healthcare costs. More work remains to continue improving access, choice, and affordability of healthcare for Minnesota families, farmers and businesses.
Roads and Bridges
Over the last two years hundreds of millions of dollars have been dedicated to funding roads and bridges across the state. The result? New funding to make Highway 23 four lanes from Willmar to St. Cloud. Four lanes leads to greater safety and more jobs for our area. Much of that funding came from an initiative I passed to direct existing taxes related to auto parts to roads and bridges. This new funding stream did not raise taxes or tab fees and will fun construction for 8,800 lane miles and 200 bridges.
Honoring our veterans
When people ask what inspired me to run for the legislature, veterans and their families are at the top of my list. As the Commander of 250 troops in Iraq, those Soldiers did everything that was asked of them. Some lost limbs, some never came home and all came back with a lasting impact of our experiences that we have had to deal with. I feel the obligation to make our state a welcoming place for veterans to live, work and retire. That is why I serve in the Minnesota Legislature.
Sen. Fischbach and I worked together on a bill to name a stretch of Highway 23 in Paynesville in honor of fallen war hero Kenneth L. Olson. Spc. Olson was from Stearns County and served in the U.S. Army making the ultimate sacrifice in Vietnam, giving up his own life to spare nearby fellow soldiers. As a veteran myself, It was great to honor Spc. Olson and all veterans with this bill. I also championed legislation to help veterans’ families with burial expenses and reduce paperwork for disabled veterans.
Funding schools, and making them safer
Asa result of the 2017-18 budget, our local schools received a 2% increase in per-student funding each year. This year the legislature also funded a new $25 million program to help make schools safer for our students.
Taxes and Spending
In 2017 we passed the largest tax relief package in nearly two decades, benefiting seniors, college graduates, farmers, and Main Street businesses. In 2018 I supported a tax plan that put us in line with the new federal tax changes and permanently cut tax rates for middle class families. Unfortunately Gov. Dayton vetoed this important bill. I will push to pass a tax conformity bill as soon as the legislature meets again in January so Minnesota taxpayers don’t experience delays when filing their taxes.
Future tax cuts will only be possible if we slow the growth the state government spending. During the Gov. Dayton’s 8 years in office, the two-year Minnesota budget grew from $32 billion to $46 billion – a 43% increase! I will prioritize spending on core services to slow the growth of spending when I am elected to the Senate.
I have a 100% pro-life voting record in the Minnesota legislature and will to continue voting for life as a member of the Minnesota Senate. The Minnesota Citizens Concerned for Life (MCCL) recently called me a “pro-life champion” and endorsed my candidacy for the Senate in 2018.
Something has gone completely wrong in our criminal justice system when local and state law enforcement agencies actively work against their federal counterparts. That’s exactly what happens when states adopt “sanctuary city” policies that limit cooperation with federal immigration enforcement agents in order to protect illegal immigrants from deportation, even if they have committed a crime here in the US. I’m fighting against these misguided policies in St. Paul and will continue to fight if elected to the Minnesota Senate.
For more information on where I stand on the issues, check out my radio ads.