Issue Position: FOR YOUR FAMILY: Supporting and Protecting the American Family
Lowering Your Health Care and Prescription Drug Costs
Millions of Americans who live Paycheck to Paycheck are one accident or sickness away from disaster and far too many have lost their health care as a result of losing their job. My father suffered from polio as a child and my mother is a nurse who has served New Jersey residents for decades. They raised me to believe that no one in the richest, most powerful country in the world should die or go bankrupt because they can't afford to go to a doctor. Our current system has expanded coverage to millions of Americans, but it still falls far short as costs keep rising.
We need to build on the Affordable Care Act to provide affordable and accessible health care for all of us:
Lower Prescription Drug Costs. One concern I've heard about so often while talking to people across New Jersey is the high price of prescription drugs. It is unacceptable that so many people are unable to afford the medications they need, and this needs to be addressed immediately. Congress must prioritize steps to reduce drug prices including allowing Medicare to directly negotiate lower prices with pharmaceutical companies, requiring pricing transparency, and implementing safeguards against price gouging.
Get Everyone Covered. Our country, our economy, our security will be stronger when our people are healthier. Having millions of people without health insurance raises the costs for all of us. We need to ensure everyone, rich or poor, has access to quality affordable healthcare. This is our new moonshot, and we can save countless lives in the process.
Give Everyone on Medicare Vision, Hearing, and Dental Coverage. I think it is ridiculous that our seniors who need vision, hearing, and dental work don't get this through Medicare. I supported and helped pass a bill through the House of Representatives that would give everyone on Medicare this coverage. I want to get this now passed through the rest of Congress and signed into law.
Invest in Doctors, Nurses, and all Medical Professionals. A doctor in Toms River told me that we need health care that focuses on people instead of profits. I couldn't agree more. Every medical professional I talk to is focused on improving care for patients. We need to help train a new generation of professionals to ensure an adequate workforce. We also need reforms that transform the industry to reflect these providers' values that prioritize patient care, not just treating problems. And we need to show the same commitment to serving our health care workers as they have shown to us in the fight against the coronavirus.
Permanently Fund Children's Health Insurance Plan (CHIP). CHIP is part of our promise to our children and playing politics with their health is embarrassing and disrespectful. Let's never let CHIP expire again or worry about whether a child can get the care they need for a bright future.
Protect People with Pre-Existing Conditions. Even in the middle of a national pandemic, Republicans are still trying to take away basic protections for people with pre-existing conditions. They failed in the past because people across the country made clear what should have already been obvious--that taking away people's health care is absolutely wrong. I will always stand up to protect those with pre-existing conditions, and continue to strengthen our health care system to make sure all who need care can get it.
Expand Veteran Care. A veteran should never have to travel far to find care or wait too long to receive treatment. I owe my life to the armed servicemen and women who kept me safe in Afghanistan. I will always stand by them.
Support Community Health Centers, especially in Rural Areas. Community health centers are key assets in our communities and they need funding and support to provide vital healthcare services, especially in underserved areas such as rural communities.
Helping Our Families Afford What We Need
➜ Make Sure No Parent Must Choose Between Their Family and Their Paycheck. With two troublemaking boys of my own, I know the challenges many parents face juggling their job and their family--and I know many people out there have it even harder than mine. We need to make sure all workers have paid family leave and sick leave so they can be there for their families without worrying about their jobs. Parents across the country also need access to quality, affordable child care so they can know their children are in good care while they are at work.
➜ Fix Our Taxes by Creating Permanent Tax Cuts for Middle Class Families Instead of Corporations. We need tax reform that focuses on permanent cuts and the needs of the middle class--not just the wants of corporations and the wealthiest Americans. When Republicans were in control of Congress, they passed a massive tax giveaway that put big corporations and the super rich ahead of New Jersey families. People across NJ have made clear they think this backwards tax bill--which saddles our nation and future generations with over a trillion dollars to pay for tax breaks that overwhelming go to corporations and the wealthiest Americans--is unfair and must be fixed.
Protecting Our Families and Communities From Crises
➜ Protect Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst. I will never take our Joint Base for granted. We all know how quickly the future of bases can change. I'm committed to protecting and supporting the Joint Base which is why once I was elected Congress, I fought to get a seat on the House Armed Services Committee. And to keep New Jerseyans working through this crisis, I introduced a bill to increase opportunities for local workers on military construction projects. As a former adviser to Generals Petraeus and John Allen in Afghanistan and as a former Pentagon official, I'm proud to serve on the Committee as a strong champion for the base, our armed service men and women, and our veterans.
➜ End Veteran Homelessness and Increase Health Support. With tens of thousands of veterans in our district, we need to expand veteran services, especially access to VA health facilities and programs. I will also prioritize efforts to make sure no veteran in New Jersey or across the country has to sleep on the streets. The words "veteran" and "homeless" should never appear in the same sentence.
➜ Stop Offshore Drilling. The Trump Administration's recent decision to open New Jersey's coast to offshore drilling is a threat to our way of life. Our beautiful shores, our home values, our recreational and commercial fishing industries, and our local businesses are in dire risk. I will relentlessly fight back against these threats with no compromise.