MIKE ON THE ISSUES:

ACCESSIBLE HEALTH CARE
Accessible health care is a right , not a privilege, for every American, and that means it must be affordable and we must ensure rural hospitals can stay open and find staff. This has the added benefit of creating good jobs for working families in our 15th district.
When elected to Congress, Mike will fight for federal programs and funding to guarantee accessible and affordable health care and protect our rural healthcare system.
WOMEN'S HEALTHCARE AND PRIVACY
Mike supports the right of a woman to make her own decisions on health care. He is outraged by the recent Supreme Court decision denying women control of their own bodies and their Constitutional right.
Mike supports efforts to guarantee women the right to reproductive privacy in a post-Roe world, and supports the following actions:
  1. Codify Roe v. Wade into federal law.
  2. Protect sensitive data on reproductive health apps.
  3. Guarantee the right of individuals to travel to another state to seek an abortion; and
  4. Ensure that women will have continued access to contraceptives, including through the mail (regardless of where they live).
Mike commented, “If Republicans take over the US House and the US Senate, they will seek a nation-wide ban on abortion.  The right to reproductive privacy is definitely on the ballot this in November 2022”
 
AFFORDABLE HOUSING
Every Pennsylvanian should have affordable, stable, safe, healthy, and energy-efficient housing.  To meet this goal, Mike believes that the federal government must take aggressive steps to increase the supply of affordable housing.
According to Mike, “We need to improve access to affordable credit and improve access to down payment assistance to rural buyers.  We need to increase funding for assistance to first-time homebuyers. We should also increase our investment in the Housing Trust Fund, to significantly expand the supply of affordable housing units.”
 
AGRICULTURE
Family farms and agriculture are essential in the 15th Congressional district and we must protect agriculture and those who have worked on farms for years - Pennsylvania’s top industry. Mike will work to preserve family farming and agriculture as a way of life.
Mike will support programs for farmers and other agri-business concerns to start and grow their operations by expanding USDA operating loan programs. He will also work to reform agricultural subsidies to better support small- and mid-sized farms.
One important way to assist Pennsylvania farmers is to fully legalize the production, distribution, and sale of industrial hemp. Industrial hemp was partially legalized at the federal level by the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018.
CRIME AND POLICE REFORM
Mike strongly supports the police; he also recognizes the need for improved police training and accountability.  We need to fully fund our police and increase funding for community programs to combat crime, including mental health services. Our police officers also need additional training and support.
 
Mike favors the comprehensive police reform bill passed in the U.S. House in March 2021, which would:
  • end certain police techniques, including chokeholds
  • ban no-knock warrants in federal drug cases
  • end “qualified immunity,” which shields police officers from most civilian lawsuits
  • require the use of body cameras
     
 
EDUCATION
Mike believes that we must provide a world-class education to every citizen in Pennsylvania.
Education is fundamental to the very foundation of America and is key to fulfilling our national promise.  It is essential to growing our economy, maintaining American competitiveness, and building a stable and strong nation. 
Expanding access to career and technical education is also important. Mike believes that the federal government needs to provide assistance to students who need help with tuition costs for career, technical, and community college education and ensure we have an educated and career-ready pool of candidates for employers.
 
 
ENERGY
Mike supports American energy independence and moving to a sustainable economy powered by American renewable energy, creating jobs and investing in a strong, stable grid that will enhance our National Security.
Mike strongly supports the current legislation to implement a windfall profits tax, protecting working families from price gouging.
 
 
ENVIRONMENT
Mike recognizes that we must protect our American resources and our land, water, air, climate, and soundscape. Mike has worked for 40 years to protect Pennsylvania’s land and water.
Climate change has very serious implications and according to US Department of Defense is a serious threat to our National Security. 
Mike supports investments to create millions of jobs in sustainable renewable energy generation, transportation, energy efficiency, advanced manufacturing, and sustainable agriculture. Mike will work with scientists and public health experts to help the United States achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
Mike also favors improving the quality of life for all Americans by restoring the federal noise pollution control office. Such an agency could assist local communities in controlling their vehicle noise problems.  For example, police in West Chester, Pennsylvania have implemented “Quiet Downtown,” which entails adding traffic patrols and citing the loudest motor vehicle offenders.

 
IMMIGRATION AND BORDER SECURITY
Mike supports strong and effective border enforcement. We need to protect the integrity of our borders and prevent human traffickers, drug dealers, and terrorists from entering our country.
Mike strongly supports the “DREAM Act,” which protects certain immigrants who came to the United States as children from being deported. Mike recognizes that legal immigrants are vital to our economy and our society. Legal immigrants enrich our culture and make America stronger.
Finally, Mike agrees with the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau that we need a guest worker program, to meet the critical shortage of agricultural workers.
 
 
INFRASTRUCTURE
The world’s richest nation should have the world’s best infrastructure system. Doing so will accommodate 21st century cargo, reduce air and water pollution, and create high-quality, good-paying jobs.
Mike strongly supports the Bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which provides $18 billion for federal investment in upgrading Pennsylvania’s infrastructure.
 
 
INTEGRITY AND THE CONGRESSIONAL OATH OF OFFICE
Every two years, members of the U.S. House of Representatives take the following pledge:
“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion, and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of this office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”
Mike takes this oath very seriously, and he will work to hold all accountable to it.
JOBS AND THE ECONOMY
The economy is not working for many Pennsylvania families. 
One step to create a shared prosperity would be to increase the federal minimum wage to $15/hour by 2026.
Recently, inflation has become a global concern, with the overwhelmingly majority of industrial countries reporting significant price hikes since before the pandemic.
Mike favors improving and expanding Small Business Administration (SBA) programs that support women- and minority-owned businesses, as well as increasing opportunities for women and minority-owned businesses to win federal contracts.
In Congress, Mike will support efforts to guarantee affordable, trustworthy, and transparent banking services, such as real-time payment systems through the Federal Reserve and easily accessible locations (such as postal offices).
 
NATIONAL SECURITY
Mike understands that providing for the common defense of our nation is a fundamental responsibility of the federal government.
Mike believes the United States military should be the best-trained, best-equipped, most powerful, and most effective fighting force in the world. He also believes that the use of military force should be used only when absolutely necessary and when all diplomatic options have been exhausted.
Mike supports the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. NATO contributes to international peace and security, promotes democratic values, and is committed to the peaceful resolution of disputes.
 
 
PREVENTING GUN VIOLENCE
Gun violence is an American public health, moral and economic crisis. Each year, over 100,000 people are shot and nearly 40,000 Americans die from gun death, devastating countless families and communities.
Mike wishes to protect Pennsylvania families, by reinstating limited sales of military style weapons, also supported by police, restricting high-capacity magazines, creating universal background checks, and passing “red flag” legislation.
Mike supports the recently passed Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which:
  • creates an enhanced review process for 18- to 21-year-old gun buyers
  • closes the “boyfriend loophole” by prohibiting those convicted of domestic violence from purchasing guns
  • clarifies who must be registered and licensed as a firearms dealer.
 
Mike will also support efforts to ensure that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has the resources to study gun violence as a public health issue.
 
 
PROTECTING DEMOCRACY
At the end of the Constitutional Convention, Benjamin Franklin was asked, “What kind of government have you given us?” “A democracy, if you can keep it,” he replied.
 
Mike believes we must do everything possible to protect democracy, voting rights, equal representation, and our system of government, including the following:
  • Repeal Citizens United
  • Reduce the influence of money in politics
  • Cracking down on foreign nationals who attempt to influence elections
     
Mike is committed to the sacred principle of “one person, one vote.” He is opposed to all efforts to disenfranchise voters through restrictive voter ID laws, closures of polling places in low-income neighborhoods and college campuses, and unconstitutional purges of the voter rolls. Mike supports the full restoration of the Voting Rights Act.
Another priority Mike will pursue in Washington: ending partisan gerrymandering.  Gerrymandering distorts our democracy. Legislative districts must be competitive, respect municipal and county boundaries, and fairly represent communities of color. Legislative districts should not be designed to protect incumbents.
 
 
RETIREMENT SECURITY
In 1935, upon signing the Social Security Act, President Franklin Roosevelt stated that the law “will take care of human needs.” In 1948, President Harry Truman commented that Social Security provides individuals “some measure of basic protection from hardship and want caused by factors” beyond their control.
President Kennedy, in 1961, stated “a nation’s strength lies in the well-being of its people. The Social Security program plays an important part in providing for families, children, and older persons in times of stress.”
Mike will assure the long-term financial stability of Social Security by voting to remove or increase the current income cap for the payroll tax. The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a non-partisan research organization, reports that eliminating Social Security’s cap on taxable wages would close “nearly nine-tenths of Social Security’s solvency gap.”
 
RURAL COMMUNITIES
The first way to strengthen rural communities in Pennsylvania is to assist agriculture. Mike has a four-point program to help Pennsylvania’s farmers and other agri-business concerns:
  1. Make it easier for new and beginning farmers and other concerns to start and grow their operations by expanding USDA operating loan programs.
  2. Partner with America’s farmers and others to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050, which will create a revolution in agriculture and create new revenue streams for farmers in energy and waste products.
  3. Act against market concentration in agriculture.  We need to strengthen enforcement of the Sherman and Clayton Antitrust Acts and the Packers and Stockyards Act. Market concentration makes it much more difficult for Pennsylvania farmers and others to earn a living.
  4. Fully legalize the production, distribution, and sale of industrial hemp, which will be an economic boon for Pennsylvania farmers.
Mike will oppose all efforts to privatize the USPS, a large employer in many rural regions, and one of the largest employers of our Veterans. Mike will work to protect the Postal Service’s universal service obligation as a core American value; he will also maintain six-day and doorstep mail delivery.
Also, Mike will prioritize saving rural hospitals and health care providers in Pennsylvania. According to a recent study, 800 rural hospitals, over 40% of all rural hospitals in the USA, run the risk of closing within a few years. Most of these small, rural hospitals are located in isolated areas; loss of any hospitals would severely restrict access to health care.
Further, Mike will make certain that all of rural Pennsylvania has access to high-speed Internet. Funding for improved broadband was included in the recently-passed infrastructure bill—which the incumbent Congressman voted against.
Finally, Mike will work to ensure that rural hospitals receive appropriate payments from Medicare, Medicaid, managed care organizations, and private insurance companies.
 
 
TAX FAIRNESS AND FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY
The prior Administration passed legislation that benefited high wealth taxpayers and large corporations. Many small businesses, farmers, and working families have been left out in the cold.
Mike will also seek to expand access to credit by creating a non-discriminatory public credit reporting agency and requiring its use by all federal lending programs. He will work with members of Congress to rework the tax code to ensure all taxpayers are treated fairly and paying their proportionate share. It is time for smart government and fair taxes.
Mike is also committed to repealing sections of existing bankruptcy laws that frequently lead to debtors losing their homes, resulting from divorce, medical debt, or job loss. Mike will propose legislation to grant bankruptcy judges the authority to modify mortgages for primary residences during bankruptcy proceedings, so that working families can benefit from the same debt relief tools currently available to those who own yachts and multiple homes.
 
 
TRADE
Mike will fight for every American job and make certain that every trade deal is fair to American workers. We need to aggressively enforce existing trade agreements and laws. In Congress, Mike will pursue a trade policy that puts workers first.  According to Mike, “We need to negotiate strong and enforceable standards for labor, the environment, and human rights. Trade agreements should have strong pro-labor provisions.”
In Congress, Mike will stand up to China. “I will work with other members of Congress,” Mike said, “to take strong action against China, or any other country, that tries to undercut American manufacturing by currency manipulation, dumping products like aluminum and steel in our markets, or providing unfair subsidies.”
Mike will also work to change bad trade policies put in place during the Trump Administration that encourage large corporations to ship jobs overseas. “If companies shut down their operations in the United States and outsource jobs,” Mike said, “we need to recover any public investments or subsidies that they received from taxpayers.”
 
 
VETERANS AND MILITARY PAY
Mike supports our nation’s military and our Veterans. He believes that the nation has a sacred obligation to make certain military service members are paid properly and that our Veterans always have access to the best health care in gratitude for defending our freedom.
Mike favors pay raises for our nation’s soldiers, airmen, sailors, and Marines. He supports recent Congressional action to raise military pay by 4.6 percent—the largest military pay increase in 20 years.
We must act to prevent Veteran and active-duty military suicide. Every day, twenty veterans and service member take their own life. Currently, only 50% of Iraq and Afghanistan veterans have access to the mental health and suicide prevention services they need. Mike will work to fully fund these programs.
Finally, Mike will work vigorously to combat Veteran homelessness. The VA recently estimated that over 37,000 Veterans are homeless. Mike favors aggressive funding of housing assistance, health care services, foreclosure assistance, employment services, mental health programs, justice outreach, and reentry assistance for homeless Veterans.
 
EQUAL RIGHTS FOR ALL
Mike supports the ratification of the federal Equal Rights Amendment (ERA), to guarantee equal rights for women, in employment, education, medical care, and family law.
This very simple amendment reads as follows:
Section 1: Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.
Section 2: Congress shall have the power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article.
Section 3: This amendment shall take effect two years after the date of ratification.
The ERA was passed by both the House and the Senate in 1972, with a seven-year time limit for ratification (which was later extended to ten years). In 2020, Virginia became the 38th state to ratify the ERA.  Without the original time limit, this would have meant that the ERA was now part of the United States Constitution.
 
Also, Mike is committed to ending domestic abuse, sexual assault, and other violence against women. He favors reauthorizing and expanding the Violence Against Women Act.  Shockingly, Mike’s opponent voted against the Violence Against Women Act.
Mike will work to expand services for survivors of violence against women, by expanding access to legal assistance, victim advocate services, and housing.
 
 
WORKER'S RIGHTS
Workers are the backbone of the American economy
Strong American labor unions help boost wages and job standards for workers throughout the economy.
Mike opposes so-called “right to work” laws, which severely undercut the ability of workers to unionize and earn equitable wages.
Also, Mike favors recognizing unions with majority sign-up (via “card-check” processes) and banning captive audience meetings, which some employers use to pressure workers against forming or joining a union. Mike also favors revising laws restricting labor rights, including non-compete clauses, no-poaching agreements, and mandatory mediation.
Mike believes that taxpayer dollars should never go to employers who violate labor laws, engage in union-busting, take workers’ wages in exploitive schemes, or employ undocumented workers to depress wages and working conditions for all.
As your Congressional representative, Mike will work to strengthen labor rights for the 20 million public-sector employees in the United States, by supporting passage of the Public Service Freedom to Negotiate Act, which would guarantee the right of public-service employees to bargain for better pay, benefits, and working conditions.
For more information or if you have any questions, email info@padistrict15.org