1.) What is the importance of the US Congress to residents of Champaign County?
The primary issues for rural counties such as Champaign County are access to affordable and quality healthcare, economic development, and education. Rural districts lack the necessary medical services, insurance, and access to quality and affordable healthcare. Unlike the majority of counties in the district, Champaign County ha access to public transportation, however it does not extend into all ares of the county and thus many residents face challenges with getting to and from medical services. Employment and economic development is also a challenge as working class employment opportunities are not as viable and reliable as before. Our public education systems are required to adhere to federal regulations that are not yet fully funded. The Congressional seat is important to Champaign County because the county needs someone who understand these challenges to advocate in Washington for legislation that will address and provide remedies to improve these conditions for rural communities.
2.) Why are you qualified to be a member of the US Congress?
Unfortunately, there are no defined qualifications for members of Congress. However, I believe that my qualifications make me the best candidate for this district and this Congressional seat. I have the lived experiences of starting from scratch, working through poverty, and raising a family. I understand what those experiences mean to people who are pursing their own American dream, and I have made that journey. I have been actively engaged in my community as a volunteer, and advocate. Now, as a member of my Board of Education, and as an Assistant Public Defender I have expanded my knowledge so that I can continue to be an advocate for all people. Those qualities make me the best candidate to represent the 15th District.
3.) If elected, what is something you want to accomplish as a Member of Congress, and how long will it take?
If the people of the 15th District decide to trust me to represent them in Washington, I want move issues of funding public education onto the agenda of the Appropriations Committee. We need to increase the amount of funding that our public schools receive. I also want to co-sponsor a bill to get funding to have mobile medical units around the district. I would like to have units for general medicine, mammograms, dentistry, mental health screenings, substance abuse, and VA services. I would ideally like to address both of these issues within the first year. I would also like to bring employment opportunities back into the area, sustainable economic opportunities.
4.) Is there anything else you would like to say to an undecided voter?
If any voter is undecided, I would say talk with me. Look at my website, visit the Facebook page, attend a forum or Meet & Greet, and make your decision then. I would tell them that I am who I say that I am. I have no propaganda. I am an advocate for people; committed to doing good work; a dedicated servan;, my conduct and character are consistent; and I would bet on me in any instance. I'm asking them to bet on me too.