VA10 Candidate Survey-Highlights
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Cross-Grassroots Candidate Survey - Virginia District 10
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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I. Candidate profile, experience, leadership skills, and campaign strategy
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1.  Prior experience with public office or role in your community prior attempts at public office; voting in past elections; elected office(s) held with years/terms served
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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Current occupation:
Infectious Disease Scientist
Current occupation: Full-Time Candidate / U.S. Army Reservist Current occupation:
Attorney
Current occupation:
State Senator / Lawyer
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N/AThis is the first time that I’ve run for any elected office.Because I was a federal employee for almost 27 years, I have never run for or served in public office.I served as an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney for Loudoun County from 2001 to 2005. I later served as an attorney and Special Justice for mental health commitment hearings. I also served on the Loudoun Community Services Board, which oversaw the Loudoun County Department of Mental Health, Substance Abuse and Developmental Disabilities. In January of 2014 I was elected to fill the State Senate seat vacated by Mark Herring when he became Attorney General, winning that three-way race with 52% of the vote and beating my Republican opponent by 15%. In 2015, I was re-elected with 56% of the vote.
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2. Your story what inspired you to run for office, why people should vote for you over other candidates
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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As a scientist I have spent 20 years working with dangerous and deadly infectious diseases ranging from Zika, to Influenza, to HIV. I lead a team at USAMRIID developing treatments and therapies for the Ebola virus. These treatments were used to protect US soldiers in affected areas and to treat individuals infected by the 2014 West Africa outbreak. I never intended to run for office until I began to watch the current administration take aim at science. From cutting funding at vital scientific agencies such as the CDC, NIH, and NASA to installing the “leading proponent against the EPAs activist agenda” Scott Pruitt as head of the EPA. With only one sitting scientist in Congress, I feel that now is the time to intellectually and demographically diversify Congress. The professional political class has placed rhetoric over fact, and corporate interests over the people. The time has come for candidates who are driven by facts and the needs of their constituents, not those beholden to special interests.As the son and grandson of immigrants and refugees, I grew up knowing every American deserves access to the American Dream. I swore an oath to uphold and defend our Constitution to protect that American Dream for future generations, and VA-10 will have no fiercer advocate for our values than me.

Donald Trump’s election represents the wrong answer to the right question: how do we get our politicians to stop serving the biggest donor and start serving the biggest need? Americans are so distrustful of our broken political system, that they were willing to elect someone completely unfit for our highest office. It will take new leaders from outside the realm of “traditional politics” who are grounded in service and American values to reset our politics and restore our Democracy.

The field in this election is incredible – there is so much talent and energy that exists within the VA10, and the candidates seeking the nomination are an example of this fact. However, Barbara Comstock is a formidable opponent, and anyone who thinks that the blue wave will carry any nominee into office is mistaken. She has demonstrated that she can defeat insider politicians and wealthy, self-funded candidates over the last two elections. But what Barbara has never faced in an election is a military veteran who is so committed to serving this country that he was willing to put his life on the line in Iraq and Afghanistan. There is no political dirt in my background for her to dig up and there is no question about my dedication to service or my willingness to support progressive values. I truly believe that this sets me apart from other candidates and puts me in a position to not only defeat Barbara, but to give the constituents of VA10 the representation they deserve in Washington.
Like so many Americans and Northern Virginians, I am deeply concerned about what is happening in our country and the inertia that Barbara Comstock and Congress have shown in failing to hold Donald Trump accountable for his dangerous policies.

Every time I speak to voters, I remind them that every Democrat running for Congress in VA10 is a good person whom I respect. I believe, however, that I am the only candidate who has the experience in tackling Medicare fraud, resulting in tens of billions of dollars in savings to our health care system; holding drug company executives accountable for preying on innocent consumers; and understanding what we need to do to address gun safety by getting more guns off the streets and out of the hands of those who would use them to harm us.

One of the starkest differences between myself and the rest of the field is that I spent my entire career facing the toughest and most clever criminals of our time and holding them accountable for their wrongdoing. I will not let a day go by serving in Congress that I don’t do the same to the President, Paul Ryan and other leaders of the GOP.
I went to Law School because I wanted to help people. I did that for many years as a prosecutor in Loudoun County, as a court appointed guardian ad litem for abused and neglected children, and as special justice in mental commitment hearings. I was inspired to get involved in politics by President Obama’s 2008 grassroots campaign, and decided to run for Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney in 2011 because I saw the incumbent abusing his position to score cheap political points and harass innocent citizens.

Between 2012 and 2013 I continued to stay involved in local Democratic politics, and worked alongside grassroots activists, knocking doors and phone banking, to reelect President Obama and elect Tim Kaine in 2012 and to flip all three statewides in 2013. I was motivated to run for State Senate in November 2013, when I saw elected Republicans in Richmond abusing their power. I watched them use their slim majority to pass voter suppression legislation, repeal Virginia’s one handgun a month law, and attempt to pass the transvaginal ultrasound bill, embarrassing Virginia on a national level. I once again see elected Republicans abusing their power at the federal level and I am concerned about the damage that will be done to our country if they remain unchecked.

It is of the utmost importance that we take back the U.S. House of Representatives, and it will be impossible to do that without winning VA-10. I am the best candidate to win this seat and oust Barbara Comstock. We cannot beat Comstock without winning in Loudoun and I am best positioned to do that. I have a strong base in Loudoun, the largest and most populous county in VA-10. My State Senate district covers about half of the county including the most Democratic areas in Leesburg, Ashburn, and Sterling. We need to give people something to vote for, not just against, and I have a strong record with which to do that. I have a robust progressive legislative record that will allow me to present a positive vision for my candidacy and inoculate against the inevitable attacks from Barbara Comstock. Finally, I believe the best indicator of future performance is past performance, and I have already won two campaigns inside the 10th district by more than 13 points each. I know how to run and win campaigns in Northern Virginia, and I’m the only candidate in this primary who has done that.
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3. What aspects of your experience will serve you best if elected? What are the most important qualities and leadership traits you bring to the campaign and the office you are seeking?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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As a scientist, I was tasked with performing research based only on fact and evidence. This is the mentality I'll bring to Congress. After receiving a DOJ clearance at USAMRIID, I lead a team of extraordinarily talented and gifted scientists in researching one of the world's most dangerous diseases in Ebola.

Scientists make for the perfect public servants. We are driven by fact, transparency, and collaboration; and our work is focused on the greater good, finding cures for the diseases that affect the most vulnerable.
The majority of my adult life has been about service to the country. At 17, I went to West Point because I knew that I wanted to serve the country that had offered my family the opportunity to pursue their American dream after they arrived as immigrants. This desire to serve drove me to volunteer for a combat tour in Afghanistan. My record of service shows that as a Representative, I will put people above politics, and service to my country above myself.

In addition to my commitment to service, I’ve also demonstrated time and again my ability to lead teams that solve complex problems, and I think that this is a critical skill as a legislator.
I was a federal prosecutor for nearly 27 years. I took on bad actors and fraudsters and held them accountable for their actions. Most important, I wasn’t satisfied to just throw someone in jail. I worked to get to the root of the problem and determined what we could do to eradicate it.

I developed a reputation at the DOJ as someone who was relentless and fearless in performing my public service.

I loved being a public servant, I enjoyed working my heart out every day to make things better and to solve big problems. I will bring all this, and more, to the United States Congress, as I do every aspect of my life.
What has made me a highly effective State Senator is my ability to listen and bring many people to the table to come up with solutions to problems. That is how, despite being in the minority party, I have been able to pass more than 40 pieces of legislation in the Virginia legislature. In this time of such deep partisan division, this is an especially important quality that I will bring the the U.S. Congress. I have experience reaching across the aisle and building consensus to deliver results for my constituents.
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4. Status of candidacy: Describe where you are in the official process of establishing your candidacy, i.e., signatures, filing, etc.?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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We have filed with the Federal Election Commission, have been talking to numerous committees, and we are on the verge of fulfilling our signature requirement for ballot access. I have filed with the FEC and have officially been a candidate since last spring. My campaign has been collecting signatures to get on the primary ballot since January 2nd and will have well over the required number by the time the 10th CD Democratic Committee starts officially collecting paperwork. This is proprietary information.I have filed my paperwork with the FEC to become a federal candidate. We are in the process of finalizing gathering petition signatures to qualify for the ballot in Virginia and expect to be finished within the next couple of weeks.
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5. How will you support whoever wins the Democratic primary?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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We will campaign for them and move our supporters to volunteer for and donate to them. I commit to supporting whoever ends up as the candidate. If that is not me, I will put forth the same effort that I did for the Virginia state candidates in 2017. My team and I knocked close to a thousand doors in support of Democrats that ran in our district, and I plan to do the same for the eventual candidate. I have pledged publicly that I will support whoever the Democratic nominee is for VA10, and I will do whatever is necessary to help defeat Barbara Comstock.If I am not victorious in the primary, I will support the Democratic nominee by helping fundraise, kicking off canvasses, knocking doors and making phone calls, serving as a surrogate, and working with their team on whatever they need.
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6. What is your prior experience connecting/working with grassroots groups? How would your campaign use grassroots help – besides canvassing and phonebanking?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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We have an innovative field plan focused on messaging and targeted voters that goes beyond the scope of traditional knocking and calls.Since starting my campaign, I’ve made every effort to connect with as many progressive grassroots as possible in the district. Their energy and determination have in many ways kept me going through the campaign. I truly feel that we need a representative in Washington that will listen to grassroots groups and make every effort to provide a voice for them in Congress.

I would also like to work with these groups to help leverage my messaging throughout their membership. I truly believe that I am running for Congress for the right reasons and that the campaign’s message will resonate with voters – and grassroots groups can help to act as a megaphone to project this winning message to even more voters.
Our campaign has been and will continue to meet and work with all of the grassroots groups and their members. As they demonstrated in 2017, these groups are the ones who will make the difference between winning and losing in November.During my two State Senate campaigns, I worked hand-in-hand with women’s reproductive groups, union workers, environmental groups, educators, gun safety advocates, and other activists to reach out to as many voters as possible. In the 2017 campaigns, I was honored to work with the newer grassroots groups to help elect Governor Northam, LG Fairfax, AG Herring, and many of our new Delegates.

In addition to canvassing and phonebanking, I look forward to working with grassroots groups for fundraising, community organizing, postcard writing, and soliciting feedback on issues and policy.
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II. Issues/Policy
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7. Do you consider yourself a progressive? Why?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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Yes, because I support many of the ideals of the progressive platform including rights for the LGBTQ and immigrant communities, the importance of rolling back the changes of global warming brought on by humans, support for a woman’s right to choose and have access to reproductive health care, support for a single payer healthcare system, and common sense gun safety laws. I am also a progressive because I am driven by facts.Yes – I consider myself a progressive. To me, being a progressive is about believing that our economic system should not favor any group over another and that government should use its resources to help those most in need. Right now, too many hard-working families are being left behind by an economy that increasingly favors the super-rich and large corporations. I support policies that give all people the opportunity to pursue their American dream – and this is why I consider myself a progressive. Initially, I should state that I hate labeling people. Nevertheless I consider myself a progressive in that I believe that every American has certain inalienable rights and that government has an unquestioned responsibility to either ensure those rights are protected or to level the playing field by enacting legislation so that every citizen has the opportunity to benefit equally in the American experience.I am a progressive. My career in the State Senate has been motivated by creating a Virginia where everyone can achieve the American Dream regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender, country of origin, religion, or whom they love. Some of the progressive issues I have championed in Richmond include establishing common sense firearms safety legislation, expanding access to affordable healthcare, ensuring equal rights for women, instituting paid medical and family leave, raising the minimum wage, establishing LGBT fair housing protections, giving teeth to Virginia’s equal pay law, expanding voting rights, stemming the school-to-prison pipeline, advocating for people with disabilities, and creating an economy that works for everyone.
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8. What single issue has most motivated you to run for office? What proposals do you have to address/advance it?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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The environment. We need to reenter the Paris treaty. Increase environmental regulations and benchmarks for emission standards, as well as create a carbon tax. Investment into mass transit on the federal level, dedicated high speed rail on the State level, and expanded commuter rail including to the western portion of the 10th in Virginia. We also need to invest into renewable energy. Solar is more affordable then ever, and Wall Street has backed it. Virginia’s 10th could lead the way by repurposing shuttered factories in Winchester and retraining blue collar workers. Campaign finance reform – Our economy is working for the ultra-rich, and it’s being held in place by a corrupt campaign finance system that pushes politicians to serve the highest bidder over the highest need. The majority of Americans support things like common sense gun control, increasing access to healthcare, and reforming our criminal justice system – but corporate special interest money has a powerful grip on our politicians. Making meaningful, long-term reform will require removing this money from our system so that our elected officials start working for their constituents.Providing access to healthcare and holding Republican Party leaders and Donald Trump accountable for their dangerous actions.No single issue dominates my motivation to serve the public. Rather, I have always worked to give a voice to those who wouldn’t otherwise have one and to do the greatest good for the greatest number. It is this history that influenced my career choices before I entered politics, and during my service as an elected official.
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9. What have you heard from voters in your congressional district that is of primary concern to them and does it vary throughout the district?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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Our district is very diverse and because of this the concerns we hear most often vary greatly – from climate change to immigration to healthcare – but, largely there is a concern that we are driven by rhetoric instead of fact and that the professional political class is failing to address major issues in our country. The primary concern that I’ve heard from voters is that we need to flip Congress blue in order to provide a real opposition to Trump’s racist, xenophobic, and bigoted administration. This starts with putting forward a candidate who can beat Barbara Comstock. This message has been consistent across the district – from McLean to Winchester. Voters are tired of the broken political system that Barbara Comstock represents, and tired of having a member of Congress who serves as a rubber stamp for Trump’s agenda. Voters throughout VA10 want a representative who will fight and advocate for them, who will speak up for them and who will put the needs of Northern Virginia ahead of the leaders of their party.What I hear from them most is that they want to have a good job, live in a safe neighborhood, send their kids to quality schools and save for their college, and have a commute reasonable enough that they get to spend time with their families. However, there are certain issues that resonate more in different areas of the district. For example, the heroin and opioid crisis has affected a greater proportion of the population in the western part of the district, while families in northeastern Loudoun are opposed to a second Potomac River crossing through their neighborhoods. I have found that basic quality-of-life family issues cut across the whole district, regardless of party.
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10. Please provide your top 5 policy priorities in order from highest to lowest, from the list of issues grassroots groups have identified as interests.
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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1. Climate Change
2. Health care
3. Gun safety
4. Governance
5. Education
1. Campaign Finance
2. Healthcare
3. Gun Safety
4. Climate Change
5. LGBTQ rights and equality
1. Health care: maintaining ACA
2. Gun safety
3. Transportation and roads
4. Taxes, finance
5. Education: school funding, testing
1. The Economy including economic development, jobs, living wage, innovation/science and technology, family friendly economic programs (affordable daycare and eldercare, paid time off, affordable college), and workers’ rights (minimum wage, unionization).
2. Education – e.g.: school funding, testing
3. Transportation and roads
4. Criminal Justice and Public Safety
5. Gun safety
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11. For each of the 10 topics below (a) thru (j), what is your position and what are the specific policies and legislation you will be advancing? Answer all or answer only the ones you want to highlight the most.
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(a) Economy & Taxes -- Support vibrant and fair local economy and job creation; efficient and fair taxation
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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We need to put the burden of taxes back on the wealthy by raising the top tax rate, increasing taxes on capital gains, and taxing the currently untaxed derivatives market. We need to remove the burden from the poor and working class. It will be beneficial to create tax incentives for better environmental behavior, create jobs here at home, and ease tax burdens on emerging small businesses. • As a member of Congress, I will encourage enterprise, foster a smart regulatory environment, and protect consumers.

• We do not need to choose between growing the economy and protecting the environment. Initiatives such as investing in renewable energy, developing a secure and efficient electricity distribution system, and updating our transportation infrastructure can simultaneously protect our environment while creating high-quality American jobs. Similarly, we do not need to choose between growing the economy and protecting workers and consumers.

• I support repealing the tax bill that gave a tax cut to Donald Trump and did far too little to help working families.
I will fight to repeal the GOP tax scam and replace it with true tax reform that benefits all Northern Virginians and that does not increase the national debt or revoke the insurance mandate of the Affordable Care Act.I believe we need to create an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top. In the State Senate, I voted in favor of several measures that would raise the minimum wage, and introduced legislation that would ensure women doing the same job as men receive equal pay and employment benefits. I also introduced legislation that would have established Paid Medical Leave in Virginia.

Making investments in our workforce is a key to growing our economy. I support increased investments in career and vocational training, and retraining for those who have been displaced from the workforce. In Congress, I will support establishing paid family and medical leave programs nationwide, protecting and expanding workers’ rights, making affordable housing more accessible to Americans, reining in Wall Street, and supporting America’s small businesses and entrepreneurs.
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(b) Civil Rights & Criminal Justice – Equal Rights Amendment; racial justice (address racial profiling, mass incarceration and police brutality); LGBTQ rights and equality
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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I am a strong supporter of the equal rights amendment and enforcing Lilly Ledbetter. I believe Congress should pass legislation recognizing stop and frisk as unconstitutional. We need police departments that look like the communities they are patrolling and all police departments should go through implicit bias training. Individual officers who abuse their power will be punished more harshly and the federal justice system should be empowered to make changes when an issue is systemic throughout an entire police force. It is time to decriminalize marijuana and end incarceration for nonviolent drug crimes. Members of the LGBTQ community deserve federal protection from discrimination. We need to teach acceptance of the LGBTQ community in schools and teach about the likes of Harvey Milk the same way we teach about any other American hero. We also need to continue working for a cure to HIV, a disease that unfairly targets members of the LGBTQ community. We cannot have full equality until we value the lives most affected by this terrible disease. • I believe that it is the right of every American to worship, speak, vote, and love as they please. I will fight discrimination of any kind, including the white supremacy that has been institutionalized into too many of our laws.

• I believe in equal pay for equal work, freedom of expression, marriage equality, and all citizens’ right to vote without undue burden.
I strongly support the ERA and I believe every person should be treated equally. Criminal justice reform is necessary and must be addressed.Throughout my public service career, ensuring civil rights, equality, and opportunity for all has been one of my main priorities. That is why I have been championing the Equal Rights Amendment for years in the General Assembly. I have fought alongside grassroots activists to ensure women’s equality is recognized in the Constitution. I also passed legislation to promote alternatives to school suspension, including positive behavior incentives, mediation, peer-to-peer counseling, community service, and other intervention alternatives so that we’re sending fewer of our children into the school-to-prison pipeline.

I believe our nation should be addressing and correcting disparities that plague our criminal justice system and lead to mass incarceration. I support reforming mandatory minimums, ending use of for-profit private prisons, working with localities and states to promote community policing, supporting reentry programs and voting rights restoration, supporting drug and veterans courts, and decriminalizing simple possession of small amounts of marijuana.

In the General Assembly, I have repeatedly championed legislation to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in housing, and cosponsored legislation that would prohibit discrimination in public employment. I have also supported bills that would remove the same-sex marriage ban in the Virginia Constitution, expand Virginia’s hate crimes statute to include the LGBTQ community, end conversion therapy, and allow localities and school boards to establish their own non-discrimination policies. In Congress, I will continue to be a strong advocate for LGBTQ community. I will support legislation to expand anti-discrimination statutes, fight against bullying of LGBTQ youth, and other initiatives to make our country more inclusive and equal for everyone.
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(c) Climate Change/Clean Energy – Aggressive transition from fossil fuels to clean energy; develop green jobs; Do you oppose: hydraulic fracturing; offshore drilling; construction of new large fracked gas pipelines?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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I mentioned my stance on climate change earlier but I am strongly opposed to fracking and offshore drilling, as well as the development of permanent pipelines that will encourage the practice of fracking for decades to come. • I see climate change as one of the top threats to our national security. It is what the Department of Defense calls a “threat multiplier” – it will aggravate other conflicts and increase other threats. In order to mitigate it, we need to be investing in clean energy and removing subsidies from fossil fuels.

• We need to get Dominion’s money out of our politics at the state level. As long as our state legislators are taking money from Dominion, their influence will remain outsized.

• I oppose the construction of new pipelines through our district; our district is increasing rapidly, and we need to find a way to preserve green space while meeting the infrastructure requirements of a growing population. Building pipelines does not help us to meet this challenge and presents risks to the environment that we should not be taking in 2018.
• Aggressive transition from fossil fuels to clean energy: SUPPORT

• Develop green jobs: SUPPORT

• Do you oppose: hydraulic fracturing: OPPOSE

• Offshore drilling: OPPOSE

• Construction of new large fracked gas pipelines?

• I support reinstatement in the Paris Agreement.
Climate change and sea level rise are real threats to Virginia and our nation, and we must take active steps to address them. In the State Senate, I have been a strong advocate for renewable energy and our environment. I sponsored legislation that would expand consumers’ access to community solar energy, mandate quicker reporting on hazardous spills in Virginia waterways, and broaden the powers of the Department of Environmental Quality to go after polluters and stop construction of natural gas pipelines when they are causing damage to our environment.

During my time in the General Assembly, I received 100% ratings and numerous awards from major environmental groups, including the “Environmental Freedom” Award from Sierra Club Virginia and the “Legislative Hero” Award from the Virginia League of Conservation Voters. In Congress, I will continue the fight to combat climate change, oppose drilling off Virginia’s coast, adhere to the goals outlined in the Paris Climate Accord, and protect our natural resources, public lands, and waters.
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(d) Education - Support public school funding; make college more affordable
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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I believe education should be more fully and equally funded from the federal government and state governments to remove the burden from local governments. We need universal pre-k, and STEM programs in every school at every level of education so that students can be exposed to science earlier and interactively. We also need to provide vocational training for teens and adults alike. Lastly, I'm supportive of free education at community colleges and public universities in exchange for civil service that can be in the individual’s field of study/expertise. For example, if a student receives 4 years of free education to become a teacher, they can complete their civil service by working at an underperforming school or with at risk kids. • As the husband of a public school teacher and the father of two children in public schools, I firmly believe that providing access to high quality, publicly provided education is of upmost importance for the district and the country. • Support public school funding: SUPPORT

• Make college more affordable: SUPPORT

• I support resources directed towards trade schools as well as ongoing on the job training for our workforce.
In the State Senate, I passed legislation that will stem the school-to-prison pipeline by establishing alternatives to long-term and short-term suspensions which disproportionately affect minorities and students with disabilities. I also opposed reckless efforts by Republicans to take away local control of schools. My strong support for education earned me the “Solid as a Rock” award from Virginia Education Association. I also sponsored bills that would create a Student Loan Refinancing Program, which will give students opportunities to refinance their loans.

In Congress, I will remain a dedicated advocate for improving educational access and resources for low-income students and children with disabilities. I will also support policies that raise teachers’ pay and benefits, promote STEM courses and careers, and incentivize career and technical training, so that our kids are best prepared for the jobs of the future.
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(e) Workers Rights & Family Friendly Economy – Raise the minimum wage (indicate to which level in your district); paid time off, paid sick leave; affordable day care and eldercare; right to collective bargaining/form unions
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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I believe strongly in raising the minimum wage to $15 per hour and indexing it for inflation. The right to collectively bargain is a human right and I plan to protect it vigorously as a Congresswoman. I believe daycare should be subsidized for poorer families and I support a national plan for family leave.• I support a $15/hour minimum wage – for a full-time worker, this equates to $30,000 per year, and there is no reason that someone working hard, full time, to provide for his or her family shouldn’t make at least $30,000.

• Labor unions have throughout our history been, and continue to be, a critical channel for ensuring workers’ rights and a living wage.
• Raise the minimum wage (indicate to which level in your district): SUPPORT A LIVING WAGE

• Paid time off, paid sick leave: SUPPORT BOTH

• Affordable day care and eldercare: SUPPORT BOTH

• Right to collective bargaining/form unions: SUPPORT
I firmly believe in workers’ rights and have been an strong advocate for them in the State Senate. I have cosponsored legislation in the General Assembly to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. I have also introduced legislation to establish Paid Medical Leave in Virginia, worked to add equal employment benefits and privileges to Virginia’s equal pay law, and made it illegal for employers to fire employees who discuss salaries with one another. I am also a strong supporter of workers’ rights to organize and collectively bargain. I will continue to fight for these values in the U.S. Congress.
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(f) Gun Safety – Close background check loopholes; ban assault weapons; ban large round ammunition clip; ban bump-stocks
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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The first thing I'd do in Congress is move to repeal the Dickey Amendment and give the CDC the power to research the causation and solution for gun violence. I would also support a complete ban on assault weapons, bump-stocks, and large round ammunition clips. Background check loopholes, including the gun show and private sale loophole, should be closed and waiting periods/legal age to purchase a gun should be extended.• As someone who has carried assault rifles in combat zones, I know that they have no place on our streets. I support bans on assault rifles and bump stocks, and limits on the purchase of ammunition and high-capacity magazines.• Close background check loopholes: SUPPORT

• Ban assault weapons: SUPPORT

• Ban large round ammunition clip: SUPPORT

• Ban bump-stocks: SUPPORT

• I support and will fight for all common sense gun reform legislation.
In the State Senate, I have championed and voted for bills that would establish universal background checks and close the gun show loophole, ban bumpstocks, mandate the reporting of lost and stolen firearms, and keep firearms out of the hands of domestic abusers and those convicted of stalking. In Congress, I will support legislation that expands mandatory background checks on gun purchases, closes loopholes that allow criminals to purchase firearms, establishes a ban on sales of military-style assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and allows the federal government to study gun violence as a public health issue.
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(g) Health Care – Expand access to health care; support and improve ACA; move toward single payer?
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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We need single payer healthcare with a focus on preventative care. We also need to give our government the ability to negotiate drug prices. I would work to change patent law and stop big pharma from monopolizing life saving drugs. I would also increase funding for research on deadly disease. And lastly, we must address a growing doctor shortage that is expected to reach up to 104,000 by 2030 according to the AAMC by introducing science at a young age and reducing postgraduate education costs. • I support a Medicare-for-All Option because in the world’s richest, most powerful country, every person should have access to high quality, affordable health care. A Medicare-for-All Option would allow those who would like to opt in to government-provided health insurance (along the lines of Medicare, but without age restrictions on eligibility) to do so.• Expand access to health care: SUPPORT

• Support and improve: ACA SUPPORT

• Move toward single payer: SUPPORT ?

• Making sure every American has access to healthcare will be one of my top priorities.
I believe that access to affordable healthcare is a right for all Americans. In the State Senate, I have been a champion for mental health reform and combating the heroin and opioid crisis in Virginia. In Congress, I will fight to protect coverage for those with preexisting conditions, eliminate lifetime caps, fund the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and keep Medicare and Medicaid strong and accessible. I support allowing the Federal government to negotiate prescription drug prices to help keep healthcare prices under control. I also believe Congress should devote greater funding resources to expanding access to affordable healthcare, improving our mental health system, expanding innovative medical research, and helping to combat addiction.
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(h) Immigration – Preserve DACA; no deputation of federal immigration enforcement to local police forces
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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I support not only protecting DACA status but also providing a clear path to citizenship for Dreamers. Local law enforcement has no business involving itself in immigration enforcement and doing so will lead to unreported crimes perpetrated against undocumented workers. The wall will be costly, ineffective and have a devastating effect on wildlife. There should be no travel ban based on the predominant religion of a country. • As the grandson of refugees and the son of an immigrant, this is an issue that is very important to me and my family. The use of Dreamers as a political football by the Trump administration is deplorable, and we need to find a permanent solution that includes a path to citizenship. • Preserve DACA: SUPPORT

• No deputation of federal immigration enforcement to local police forces: SUPPORT
As State Senator, I have consistently voted against Republican attempts to stigmatize immigrants, including their anti-Sharia legislation, the so-called “sanctuary cities” bills, and legislation that would have required Virginia to track and report on the location of refugees who resettle here. I believe Congress needs to pass comprehensive immigration reform that includes a pathway to citizenship for immigrant families, protects DREAMers and their futures, shuts down inhumane private detention centers, and ensures money that this administration would spend on building a wall instead be spent on securing and modernizing our borders and defending national security.
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(i) Governance Reform -- Voting rights, protect/increase voting access; fair redistricting; campaign finance reform; overturn Citizens United
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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As a candidate, I have vowed to not take any money from corporate PACs. We need to remove corporate influence and pass a constitutional amendment recognizing that money isn't speech and that corporations aren't people - essentially overturning the Citizens United and Santa Clara decisions. I believe in universal voter registration, and federally prohibiting voter ID laws. Redistricting should be taken away from partisan legislatures and handed off to an independent body of demographers. • As described above, if I had to pick a single issue it would be reforming the role of money in politics. This includes overturning Citizens United, but also taking other near-term steps so that our politicians don’t have to be constantly thinking about their biggest donors, and can instead focus on serving constituents. I believe that so many other issues that seem intractable (health care, climate change, guns, etc.) would be much more solvable if we solved this one first, and removed the role of money in politics that prevents progress on these other issues. • Voting rights, protect/increase voting access: SUPPORT

• Fair redistricting: SUPPORT

• Campaign finance reform: SUPPORT

• Overturn Citizens United: SUPPORT
The right to vote is one of the most basic principles of our democracy. In the State Senate, I sponsored and voted for legislation to end gerrymandering, allow easier access to the polls, expand absentee voting options, and add more options for the acceptable forms of voter identification. In Congress, I will continue to fight against attempts to suppress access to the ballot box. I will work to end racial and partisan gerrymandering, expand early voting, make Election Day a federal holiday, and reform our broken campaign finance system that benefits special interests at the expense of normal citizens, including overturning Citizens United and getting money out of politics.
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(j) Womens Reproductive Rights -- Support access to safe and legal abortion
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Julia BigginsDan HelmerPaul PelletierJennifer Wexton
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Roe v. Wade is clear. The choice for a woman to have an abortion should be between her and her doctor. Any woman making this choice should have access to safe and legal abortions. We also need to work to remove the stigma surrounding the toughest decision a woman will ever have to make. • The right to choose should be between a woman and her doctor – period. Every woman, regardless of background or income, should have access to birth control and safe, legal abortion. • Support access to safe and legal abortion: SUPPORTI am a strong advocate for women’s rights. I believe women’s healthcare decisions should be made between a woman and her doctor, and I have continuously fought to keep government out of those decisions. In the State Senate, I have fought against the Republicans’ undue restrictions on abortion by championing legislation that would remove unconstitutional barriers to access including unnecessary waiting periods and TRAP laws targeted at women’s health clinics.
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