Congressional Priorities for Campaign 2018

Thank you to everyone who has given me recent opportunities to talk about my campaign priorities. These are issues that are very important to me, and I know many of you are concerned about them, too. As always, I welcome your feedback and constructive criticism as the 2018 campaign season gets underway.

You can also find this list under the “Congressional Priorities” link on my homepage.

Affordable and Accessible Healthcare

This is a national priority for the Democratic Party, and I strongly agree that our nation needs solutions to our healthcare challenges. There are too many people in our country, particularly in Alabama, who cannot afford even basic healthcare needs. I support expanding affordable healthcare options and strengthening healthcare coverage for our most vulnerable residents.

Reduce Student Loan Debt

Pew Research Center reported in August 2017 that “Americans owed more than $1.3 trillion in student loans at the end of June, more than two and a half times what they owed a decade earlier.”

Americans should not be burdened with years, or even decades, of loan debt to earn a degree from a college or university. An educated citizenry is crucial to a healthy democracy, and I will promote and support efforts at the federal level to create ways to reduce current student loan debt, minimize future student debt, and explore options for fiscally responsible debt forgiveness programs.

Promote Career and Technical Education

I come from a family of public educators, and we have always recognized Career and Technical Education (CTE) as a vital component of our communities’ successes. The Alabama Department of Education describes CTE as “the foundation for our state’s future.” I agree.

North Alabama is rich with opportunities for employees with industrial and technical training, and our state’s long-term success depends on having a workforce that is educated, skilled, and employment-ready. Career and Technical Education, at both the high school and community college levels, is vital for building and sustaining a strong middle class, and it is crucial to promoting innovation. All of this requires a strong partnership between federal and state governments, and I will actively promote legislation and initiatives that address our country’s Career and Technical Education needs, including CTE teacher training.

Protect Free Expression

I spent many years of my professional life as a broadcast journalist, and I am now a professor of mass communication. The First Amendment, which includes free press and free speech guarantees, is one of the buttresses of American democracy.

Elected officials from federal to local levels increasingly show a reckless disregard for free expression and disdain for journalists in particular. This is dangerous to our democracy. The United States ranks 43 in the Reporters Without Borders 2017 World Press Freedom Index. That is embarrassing. I will use my position in Congress to relentlessly support free expression, and as an educator, I will actively speak about why protecting free expression and promoting a free press are vital to our country’s future success.

As a member of the Society of Professional Journalists, I will be an advocate for passage of a federal shield law, which would help journalists protect themselves (in certain circumstances) from federal coercion to reveal their sources, particularly when those sources serve as whistleblowers. States have overwhelmingly recognized the value of such protections, yet the federal government has failed to address the matter.

Defend Human Rights in North Korea

This is the most important foreign affairs issue of my campaign. Any future negotiations with North Korea regarding its nuclear program must include a demand that the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (the North’s official name) close all of its prison, labor, and “reeducation” camps. More than 120,000 North Koreans are currently imprisoned in them, many simply for being in the “wrong” family or for expressing political opinions deemed unacceptable by the government. This is one of the worst humanitarian crises of our time.

I believe North Korea will continue pursuing its nuclear plans despite international sanctions, so it is important for the United States to work with its global partners to find a solution for this issue. In Congress, I will support sustained, practical diplomatic efforts to solve this challenge. I will not support preemptive military action under any circumstances. There will be a continued need for the United States to maintain its defense agreements with South Korea and Japan, and north Alabama’s defense industry will play a vital role in maintaining stability in northeast Asia.

 

 

2 thoughts on “Congressional Priorities for Campaign 2018

  1. Hi Butler Cain!

    I’m a dedicated Democrat, have been since my very first voting opportunity.
    I support the Democrats in my home state, but I also support Democrats in many other states and their cities, towns, counties, etc.
    I wanted to say, I love what I read about you (though it would’ve been nice to know from the start that you are in Alabama – just FYI), but I can’t figure out where to send a donation.

    I ask candidates if they can take PayPal (either instead of or in addition to ActBlue) because ActBlue has (inadvertently, I assume) bilked some donors out of $ (myself included).

    Anyway, I wish you great success in your political endeavors and I would be glad to send along a little $ by way of support.

    All the best,
    Merry Reymond
    Norfolk, VA 23503
    me.reymond@gmail.com
    Twitter: @MerryRey

    Like

    • Hi Merry!

      I’m so sorry to hear about your problems with ActBlue, but I very much appreciate your kind words and willingness to support my campaign. You are most welcome to send a donation to my campaign mailing address (it’s included near the bottom of the “About” section of my website):

      Butler Cain for Congress
      PO Box 1209
      Florence, AL 35631-1209

      Thank you for reaching out and for all of your efforts!

      Regards,

      Butler

      Like

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