First, I want to thank and praise the most important veteran in my life, my daughter Brooke. She’s one of the rare veterans who’ll never be truly recognized for all she’s done for our country. She’s a true hero that’s given up a lot for us to have a better future.
I also want to thank my father who was badly injured during an ambush in Vietnam. Despite his injuries and experiences, he was my influence for following his lead to do my part for my country.
I want to do more for ...vets today than simply thank my brother and sisters in arms. I also want to remind everyone about the harsh realities of their stories, and why today is a holiday in the first place.
Since I’ve been running for Congress, I’ve met several veterans that I would have never met and heard stories that I would never have heard. I’ve also heard stories of their struggles and seen how our government has turned its back on them.
Veterans day shouldn’t be considered a single day for a quick “thank you” or photo-ops, which is how most politicians seem to treat it. It should be a time of celebration for those who made it home and a remembrance of those who didn’t. It should be a time when we reflect back on the wrongs that cause wars and the lessons to avoid future ones.
I think civilians understand, though it can’t be repeated too often, the sacrifices made by those who serve, and what their families and loved ones go through while they are gone. Every day is a concern. Every night is a hope that they are ok. For the soldier, they only want to come home and when they do, often times they bring back demons that may never go away. They are good people who wanted to do right. They are good people who, despite knowing the consequences, took up the call for their country and the people they don’t even know.
What I’m left here doing is running for office to right some of these wrongs. To actually take care of my brothers and sisters in arms. I’m very thankful for what you have done. I’m very sorry for what you’ve been through and I hope your struggles get better.
I’ll do my best for you all, I promise. You each make me proud to have served our country and proud to call myself a veteran, knowing that your heroism has given that term so much honor. If you have the financial security to do so, please consider supporting my campaign with Blue America, a political action committee that helps military veterans who are running for Congress. https://secure.actblue.com/contribute/page/progvets…
It's difficult to believe that we're here, but we are.
Please call your representatives to support HR 669 or call the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121
This bill prohibits the President from using the Armed Forces to conduct a first-use nuclear strike unless such strike is conducted pursuant to a congressional declaration of war expressly authorizing such strike....
There are many things that we can overturn and fix once we flip the house and senate, but a nuclear explosion we cannot.
A sample call script can be at
My most sincere thoughts and prayers are with former Governor Tom Ridge. Wishing him a very speedy recovery.
Have you ever thought that Democrats sound like conspiracy theorists when we talk about corporate interests and billionaires influencing and corrupting our government? Sometimes it can feel like it. I highly recommend giving this episode of Crooked Conversations from Crooked Media a listen. It's really great for explaining how understanding dark money is essential to understanding the current state of our politics. Fast forward to minute 6:00 to hear what Tommy Vietor and Jane Mayer say about the Koch brothers.
Friends, I have applied for the endorsement of Democracy for America, but I need you to voice your support for me to make it happen. If you believe I fit the following criteria, please consider adding your name in support.
・Will the candidate move the progressive movement forward in their community?
・What do local members want to see their elected leaders stand up for, and does the candidate have substantial support from our local members?
・Do the candidate's positions and po...licies build the broader progressive movement, especially in the fight against income inequality?
・Is the campaign building a people-powered operation and is the candidate working to win?
Democracy for America is a people-powered political action committee whose mission is to build and empower the progressive grassroots to take our democracy back from corporations and billionaires and combat growing income inequality.
A friendly reminder that Keith Rothfus and the Republicans want to raise taxes on the middle class, cut Medicare, and take health insurance away from millions of Americans so people like Steve "Foreclosure King" Mnuchin and his socialite wife, Louise Linton, can get a tax cut.
Best caption? Finish your cake first, and then let me know.
The House is scheduled to vote on a huge tax bill tomorrow without holding a single hearing to discuss or debate its contents. This is not leadership or representation—it is fraud. This is more than just a tax bill; it is also a bill to throw 13 million people off of health care to pay for tax breaks for billionaires. People need to know what this is really about.
Rothfus and the rest of the Republicans will likely pass this bill in the House. Their corporate and billionaire ...donors are demanding it.
We all know it is time for a change in Washington. It is time for the middle class and the working people across America to have a voice in Washington. Call Senator Toomey (202) 224-4254 and let him know enough is enough. Here is a call script: https://www.trumptaxscam.org/republican-call-script-to-stop…
Then call Rothfus (D.C Phone: 202 225-2065) and tell him to stop supporting legislation that hurts our district and our country. Then tell him again at the voting booth in November 2018. We are less than a year away from change.
Anyone who cares about health care in this country now has a reason to fight against the Republican tax bill. The news just broke – Senate Republicans want to rip health insurance away from 13 million Americans... through the tax bill.
The new Senate Republican tax bill would repeal the ACA's individual mandate—essentially repealing without even bothering to replace, in order to free up 300 billion dollars to give to the wealthiest people in the US. Repealing the individual mandate will lead to 13 million more people being uninsured and will increase premiums by 10%.
Let there be no doubt about the Republican party's intentions; they have an insatiable desire to fulfill campaign promises of repealing the AC...A, and this helps them with their math. Repealing the individual mandate means they can give BIGGER TAX CUTS to corporations and their donors.
This country and our district are greatly made up of hardworking, middle-class people who like having affordable health insurance. Why does the Republican party and Keith Rothfus think we should carry weight for billionaires like the 11 families and largest donors in the 2016 election cycle?
Look at the table below - these families donated more than $205 million. If the tax bill passes, they reap up to $67.5 billion from the estate tax alone (not counting all the other goodies the Republicans provided for them in the bill) while working class people are denied the most basic access to affordable healthcare.
This is exactly what I'm talking about when I talk about the scourge of political corruption and the damage it's doing to our current government. That isn’t Democracy; that's called a “plutocracy” – when the wealthiest control the government.
Judging by his voting record, Rothfus seems to think that this current system is what the people in PA-12 want and deserve. I know the demographics of PA-12 as I'm sure Rothfus does; I just don't understand why Rothfus and I can look at the same district and see vastly different needs.
I spent this morning at the Veterans Day parade in downtown Beaver honoring our country's servicemembers and their family members. Larry Googins, who served as a fighter pilot and flew 193 missions over Vietnam and in Southeast Asia, earning the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Meritorious Service Medal and 13 air medals, led a balloon sendoff to bring attention to Agent Orange and its effects on soldiers and their offspring. I truly look forward to the opportunity and honor to represent and fight for fellow service members like Larry in Congress.
(On a very minor side note, I caught a glimpse of the guy whose job I'm going to take next year circled in yellow.)
We have a Democratic (PA-12) candidate roundtable discussion tonight. Please tune in here a little after 7pm EST for a live stream if you'd like to watch the candidates and see what we know and where we stand on the issues. Update: We're having some connectivity issues, so the video will be posted after the roundtable concludes.
Tax cuts for corporations do not mean tax cuts for you.
This remarkable line of questioning from Congresswoman Suzan DelBene demonstrates just a few of the ways that the GOP tax plan treats corporations better than p...eople.
Under the Republican plan, corporations are still allowed to deduct state and local taxes. Workers are not. Corporations are still allowed to deduct business expenses. Teachers are not.
Corporations are still allowed to deduct more than $10,000 in property taxes. Homeowners are not. Corporations are still allowed to deduct moving expenses. Families are not.
And this is on top of a $1.5 trillion corporate tax cut.
Let's be clear, this is not a "middle-class tax cut." Working families get the crumbs and the super-wealthy get everything else.
Part three of four of the Pine Township roundtable conversation with the declared Democratic candidates for PA-12: Aaron Anthony, Tom Prigg, John Stolz, and Beth Tarasi. Attendees asked questions and candidates responded in a conversational format. Timestamps are when questions were asked or when the conversation shifted to a different topic.
00:01 - Overcoming hurdles with renewable energy support continued
3:00 - Addressing problems with re-education and retraining...
6:05 - PA-12’s natural resource industries
7:25 - Corporate welfare vs. social welfare
9:30 - Senior citizens as a large contingency of social welfare recipients
11:11 - Candidates' shared vision and problems with Rothfus voting record
20:20 - Women's reproductive health and rights as a wedge issue
Part two of four of the Pine Township roundtable conversation with the declared Democratic candidates for PA-12: Aaron Anthony, Tom Prigg, John Stolz, and Beth Tarasi. Attendees asked questions and candidates responded in a conversational format. Timestamps are when questions were asked or when the conversation shifted to a different topic.
00:01 Resources necessary to reach specific PA-12 voting demographics (continued)
1:50 - Importance of door-knocking...
4:35 - How to reach all of PA-12 and build relationships throughout (Cambria/Somerset County focus)
7:40 - Difference in voter opinion on gun control and other issues with respect to Allegheny county vs the surrounding counties in PA-12
12:40 - Environmental issues within PA-12
16:10 - Large money donors and fundamental problems within the fundraising apparatus
21:14 - Citizens United discussion
22:50 - Overcoming hurdles with green energy support
Part one of four of the Pine Township roundtable conversation with the declared Democratic candidates for PA-12: Aaron Anthony, Tom Prigg, John Stolz, and Beth Tarasi. Attendees asked questions and candidates responded in a conversational format. Timestamps are when questions were asked or when the conversation shifted to a different topic.
1:20 - Observed differences in Democratic Party between grassroots vs establishment and local vs. national
8:15 - Millennials growing i...nfluence within the Democratic party
15:30 - How to overcome Republicans/Rothfus’s disproportionate resource advantage
21:00 - Overcoming communication and messaging challenges
23:30 - Resources necessary to reach specific PA-12 voting demographics
The seating assignment at Keith Rothfus' table.
It has a nice ring to it. Too bad the sign disappeared soon after this picture was taken.
Thank you NAACP for a great banquet!