My Priorities

YOU are my top priority.

My first obligation is to speak for you in the halls of state government.  This means listening to you, making your issues my own, doing what I can to see your interests advanced, an​d on the rare occasion when we may disagree, explaining my reasoning to you with respect and retaining an open mind.

 
The following issues are my legislative priorities
The early actions that I plan to take in each category are shown in italics.T
  
  
HEALTH CARE
Make health care available and affordable to every Colorado resident
  
  • Provide a public option to bring down the cost of health insurance
  • Integrate behavioral health with primary care
  • Use existing facilities, like community clinics and health care collaboratives, to control costs of care
I will call for a bipartisan interim committee to design a Colorado-specific public option for health care (like buying into Medicaid)
  
  • Defend the right of reproductive choice by every woman, and civil rights for every individual, regardless of age, race, religion, ethnicity, gender identity, or disability
  • End the war on drugs, prosecuting crimes committed under their influence, but removing criminal penalties for mere possession of all drugs
  • Pursue alternatives to incarceration for non-violent crimes
  • Reconsider parole procedures to keep truly dangerous criminals behind bars while promoting rehabilitation of others earlier in their sentences
  
  
 LIBERTY AND JUSTICE
Ensure the rights and safety of all, with no exceptions
  
  
I will introduce legislation to remove marijuana from Schedule I of controlled substances.
  

  • Support public-private initiatives to train workers for the skills needed for today and tomorrow
  • Promote affordable day care for every parent, married or single
  • Make the state an employer of last resort for those willing and able to work

  
  
ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY
Guarantee a right to work for all able-bodied individuals
  
  
  
I will explore with labor leaders and state agencies the possibility of creating a state jobs corps for parolees and the chronically unemployed
  
  
  
Other issues that I feel strongly about include the following:
  
  
  
HOUSING:
Affordable homes and rentals are essential for keeping Denver a city of opportunity and diversity.  I support the city’s efforts to provide affordable housing, and the state’s effort to balance the interests of homeowners and builders in fixing construction defects. I further support working toward limited home-rule rent control.
        
EDUCATION:
Full funding for education at all levels is essential, from pre-K through 5 for the basics, from 6 through 12 for a full range of arts, athletics, humanities, social sciences, and STEM preparation, and post-graduate training in the trades and job skills for tomorrow’s workforce, or affordable university education for those interested and qualified.
  
ENVIRONMENT
Colorado’s great out-of-doors are the state’s most treasured asset and a major economic attraction.  They must be conserved and maintained for the enjoyment of all and the health of the planet.

ENERGY
The energy industry continues to be a major economic driver for the state.  While extraction of coal, oil, and gas will continue as a bridge to a total green energy future, the state must pursue that future with vigor – never backing down from our transition away from fossil fuels.

SOCIAL SERVICES
The soul of a people is defined by their willingness to provide help to those in need at the low points in their lives – whether victims of child abuse, crime, poverty, or rotten bad luck –  so that they can turn into productive citizens who pay their gratitude forward to those next in need.

IMMIGRATION
The inability of the federal government to deal with the immigration issue is inexcusable, and the abuses perpetrated against undocumented residents and families of mixed citizenship cannot be tolerated.  The state must do what it can to protect the rights of undocumented but crime-free residents, and explore ways to limit the damage to immigrant communities perpetrated by the stepped-up harassment by agents of the Trump administration.

REVENUE AND TAXATION
We need to rethink our revenue from different sources (income, property, sales, gas, and severance) to better reflect the high tech, entrepreneurial, and services economy of the 21st century. TABOR has a suffocating effect on the state budget, but its wholesale deletion is unrealistic. Voter approval of tax increases is too popular to be repealed for the foreseeable future.  But other ways to soften the impact of TABOR are available and should be pursued.

CAMPAIGN FINANCE
Dark money has become a toxic addition to our political process. While I can’t control what others say and spend, I ask that no unaccountable money be spent on my behalf, and will denounce any effort by unaccountable sources to discredit my opponents.  I have also pledged to abide by the voluntary spending limits provided for in Colorado law.