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My Political Platform

My Political Platform

by Kevin Kelton

Now that we are heading into the midterms, every candidate should hone their issues platform so that voters know what they stand for and how they’d achieve it. But we as voters need to know what we stand for, as well. So I have developed my own political platform that I would be running on if I were a congressional candidate. I believe it would be a winning message for a wide swath of Democrats.

Kevin’s 10-point platform:

  • Universal healthcare should be a right, but there is not one single pathway to achieve it. While I do not think the nation is quite ready for a single payer or Medicare for All system, I advocate taking steps in that direction. So I support expanding Medicare to create a Medicare Buy-in for people 55 to 64 and for independent contractors and younger people who cannot find reasonably affordable health insurance in the marketplace. They would be getting Medicare coverage but paying an above Medicare premium – not at private market rates but high enough to make covering them a reasonable cost to the Medicare system. This would actually help strengthen Medicare, because it would be adding new revenue to the program and adding younger, healthier patients into the risk pool. In essence, a win-win for individuals and for Medicare itself. And it would be a powerful first step toward a future Medicare for All system that might achieve growing national acceptance as people get more comfortable with the idea.
  • Create a national infrastructure program with a $15 minimum wage would go a long way to creating more full-time jobs and helping reduce the necessity of the gig economy. This type of short-term program would be preferable to a federal job guarantee program, because an infrastructure program is tailored to the time and the economy it’s designed for, whereas a permanent job guarantee program might not be right for every economy in our future.
  • Start a national program to retrain police and redesign police hiring practices. The Thin Blue Line needs to be busted and replaced with a policing philosophy that puts citizen safety ahead of policemen’s careers and pride. When police departments stop killing innocent people and put human dignity ahead of authoritarian dogma, we will be able to afford police the respect they desire and deserve.
  • Create a consumers’ bill of rights that includes abolishing forced arbitration agreements in consumer contracts, institutes mandatory price posting in all medical providers’ offices and practices, the ability to form small cooperative workers’ unions and collectively bargain, and other pro-consumer, pro-worker regulations.
  • Create a voluntary judicial review process for workplace sexual harassment complaints so bosses and business owners are not put in the position of mediating complex interpersonal workplace disagreements.
  • Institute universal voter registration coupled with a universal voter ID program that does not disadvantage any voter group. Expand voter registration and voter participation with a goal of 75% voter turnout in national elections.
  • A return to the FCC’s old Equal Time Rule but expanded to apply to all broadcast and cable/streaming media, and a return to sensible campaign finance limits that empowers people over corporate interests.
  • It’s bad enough we have a nation of 400 million guns, so let’s do something before it’s 800 million and ever more deadly weaponry. Push for sensible gun safety laws anywhere and everywhere, including new technologies and holding gun manufacturers liable for their products (like every other industry). We will hit many roadblocks. But we will keep fighting.
  • Expand college affordability wherever possible to better compete with the rest of the world. Free community college should be the minimum goal. Retraining current workers should also be expanded and funded to make our workforce better fit the economy of the future.
  • Now that the tax code has been revised, let’s tweak it to make it fairer to working class Americans and make sure corporations and wealthy individuals never get a free ride.

You may share some of these ideals but prefer a different path to get there. Maybe there are issues I should have addressed but haven’t yet. But these are a good starting point for Democrats who lean left and those who are slightly more mainstream to come together on a set of issues we believe in and are ready to fight for.

Kevin Kelton is the co-host of The More Perfect Union podcast and founder of the Facebook discussion groups Open Fire Politics, Open Fire Food & Spirits, and Open Fire Sex.

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