Platform
PERSONAL FREEDOM
The government has no compelling interest in what happens when the action involves consenting adult(s).

Seatbelt laws, helmet laws, prostitution laws; all of these are victimless crimes which infringe on personal freedoms. In the case of seatbelts and helmets I firmly believe in their effectiveness and will continue to use them. However, people have the right to self-determination and are aware of the risks associated with lack of use. Leave these decisions up to adults, the government is neither their parents nor their babysitters.


LUNCH SHAMING
This is another disturbing trend that has been receiving greater publicity within the last few years.

While I was growing up, there were many years when my family was eligible for reduced or free lunch. I attended a magnet school near my house which also found many students attending from more affluent neighborhoods and backgrounds. When you went to the cashier you had to state that you were free or reduced lunch, and even to a child this can be embarrassing.

There were also times when I forgot my lunch money, it happens. But we simply had to tell the cashier and she told us to bring it the next day. Never, at any point, was our food taken away and swapped for a cold meal, we were never forced to wipe down tables, and a stamp was never placed on our hands to indicate that we owed lunch money.

I am sure that children who are out of lunch money, or are on reduced or free lunch programs experience the same anxiety I did. I cannot imagine having “lunch shaming” practices stacked on top of it.

I will seek a federal prohibition on lunch shaming practices in this country. We have enough children going hungry in this country without adding to it. Lunch shaming practices are embarrassing to the student and are unproductive.


ABORTION
I am personally pro-life. When my wife was pregnant with our first child, based on some test results which were inconclusive at the time, we were provided the option of terminating or continuing on with the pregnancy pending further testing. The tests were nothing that would have been life threatening, but the choice was ours. We hadn’t made it out of the parking lot before we knew we would carry on. That was our personal choice because we knew what we were capable of and were capable of providing.

But, with all of that being said I am pro-choice for others. I don’t know what the situations of others are, and it isn’t my place to determine what is best. I think it is sad when people choose to terminate a pregnancy, but it equally saddens me when people bring children into this world and neglect them, or the child is sent around the foster system, never knowing a steady loving home. So in some cases, I actually think it is a better for the child not to be forcefully brought into a situation where they won’t receive the loving and nurturing environment they need. 

If people made responsible decisions from the outset, this subject wouldn’t be an issue, but they don’t so it is. In some cases punishing parents for their irresponsibility by outlawing abortion and forcing them to have the child essentially punishes the child, and forces the child to endure a situation that isn’t receptive, nurturing, and loving.

I don’t know if I can tell you what is worse. 

I am not a religious man and many times this argument tends to follow religiously based lines. What I said may contradict with what your personal feelings are. While I hope you can understand my position and my process, if what I have said means you can’t vote for me I completely understand. I encourage you to vote your conscience, whatever it may be. 

I realize some will argue the "partial-birth" abortion aspect. For those of you that would bring up this point, please read this article at Reason.com .


VETERANS & MILITARY
Veterans
It is imperative that work is done to resolve issues and ensure that our Veterans are getting the post-service care that they both need and deserve. I will work closely with the VA and Veterans Service Organizations (VSOs) in an effort to close gaps in coverage and benefits.

I will also work to improve the VA healthcare system by working to create systems which will significantly reduce, if not eliminate, the long wait lists. We must ensure that Veterans see care providers in a timely manner. I will also work to improve the quality of care that Veterans receive from the VA.

When it comes to Veteran suicides and homelessness, one is too many. While Congress has passed legislation I do not believe that they have been proactive enough in addressing the issue. I will work to ensure that programs are created so that they are more accessible and widely known.

Military
I believe in a strong national defense and I believe that ensuring that our Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen, and Guardians are properly equipped at all times. While I do not believe that military action is always the appropriate course, I know that sometimes it is necessary. It is inexcusable to send our Warfighters into combat zones without the appropriate equipment and training. I want to make sure that our services have the operating budgets that they need.

It is ludicrous that every time the Congress can’t come to terms on a budget they simply shut down. What is even more unimaginable is that they simply stop paying members of the military until the budget conflict is resolved. I will introduce legislation that protects military and Veteran pensions in the event of a government shutdown and ensures that those checks will not stop.

Military Intervention
Military interventions cause more problems than they resolve, and more importantly they risk the spilling of American blood on foreign soil.  Any issues we have overseas should first be resolved through diplomatic channels.  We should also not be in the business of nation building, or entering other nation’s civil conflicts to try and enforce on them what we believe they should be. 


CONGRESSIONAL ISSUES
The fact that a person is able to continuously get elected to Congress for decades on end is preposterous. Holding such offices should be a temporary duty and not a career. The ability of career politicians to repeat as a member of Congress prevents the flow of new and free thoughts and ideas. I will work towards the creation of a constitutional amendment which will term limit congress. This plan will limit members to a combined 12 years in the congressional bodies.

If elected I will self impose a term limit not to exceed the time requirement for receiving congressional pension. I will resign or quit seeking re-election before that occurs. 

I believe that congressional pensions should be eliminated.

I will introduce legislation that prevents the congress from receiving pay if there is a failure to pass a budget by required deadlines.


EDUCATION
Let each state determine what is best for them and their students. Eliminate common core and allow schools to actually teach as opposed to train for test taking. We need to teach students to think critically, and teaching them to take tests does nothing to improve their thinking processes, skills, and abilities.


RAILROADS
Crew Consists
I know that the railroads in this country are vital to our economy. I am also aware of some of the many concerns that are related to them. I support the two person crew consists for freight trains operating as road jobs. While I support the implementation of Positive Train Control (PTC), I support two person consists without regard to its implementation.

Railroad Retirement
I will protect Railroad Retirement from being pilfered to subsidize other government programs.

Railroad Signals
I support a standardized national signal system. I believe that this will improve safety and eliminate confusion for crews that operate over multiple railroad territories.

Railroad Safety
A growing trend of concern has been taking photos on railroad tracks. This fad has caused a growing number of deaths and is resulting in literal final photos of youth and adults alike.

While there is little that can be done to enforce trespassing on railroad tracks when Law Enforcement isn't present there is something that can be done to prevent trespassing for the purposes of professional photographic services. Any professional photographer who knowingly and willfully takes clients to live railroad tracks will face harsh penalties.

Additionally, there seems to be a lack of concern by many when it comes to railroad grade crossing warnings. Many motorists have died due to impatience and have driven around automatic warning devices only to be struck and killed by trains. This affects not only the driver, but passengers in the car as well as the train crews. 

If elected, I will present legislation to make it a federal offense to trespass on railroad tracks. Motorists will face harsh punishments for bypassing automatic warning devices while passengers are present in the vehicle. These punishments will be elevated in the event that any passenger is under the age of 18 at the time of infraction.  


ECONOMY & TAXES
Foreign Aid
I will fight against foreign aid and work to make it domestic aid. Our government spends billions overseas regularly while our infrastructure is crumbling. Our bridges and dams are behind on inspections and are being used well past life expectancies. It is time we stop spending money to strengthen other nations and start working to strengthen our own.

Budget
A budget must be settled and passed. Resolutions that are nothing more than continuances of the previous budget are nothing more than a band-aid on a worsening problem. Congress must work to enact a budget and do so in a timely manner.

As part of solving budgetary and government spending problems, I will propose legislation requiring government agencies to find reductions in spending equaling 20% every 5 years. Accompanying each reduction in spending, will be a 20% reduction in taxes on the American people. These reductions will remain permanent, and unlike current “reductions” will not sunset.

While these reductions at each agency will include several factors to reach the aggregate 20%, it should be noted that this legislation would only affect personnel based on natural attrition. As an employee leaves government service, that position should be evaluated as to its necessity. If they agency can continue to function without the position being filled, the position will be abolished.


GUN RIGHTS
I firmly believe that it is not the gun that kills, but the operator. Because of this I recognize that taking guns and 2nd Amendment rights away from law abiding citizens is fruitless in preventing and eliminating gun crimes and deaths. A gun in the hand of a good person is not a weapon, but a tool which can mean the difference between catastrophic loss of life or only that of the attacker. 

However, in light of recent events I am open, and I think we should all be, to discussion on what the best path forward is in regards to firearms in this country. A middle ground does currently exist, but with each major shooting event that middle ground begins to fade. We have to come together and determine a constitutionally sound solution as soon as possible. 


ABOLISH THE PATRIOT ACT & NDAA
While this country needs and effective security program in these trying times, it does not mean the government should have the ability to overstep their bounds and spy on citizens at will or arrest and hold them without valid probable cause.


STOP THE WAR ON DRUGS
The war on drugs has cost this country trillions not only in enforcement efforts to combat drugs but also in residual costs associated with court and confinement. Let's end the war on drugs and treat drug addiction not as a crime but as an illness. 

Legalize Marijuana
Most users aren’t traffickers; they are “social” users with no other intention than to get high. We currently allow alcohol yet we outlaw marijuana. Legalize marijuana and tax it in the same manner that we currently tax alcohol and tobacco. Additionally, the benefits of marijuana for medical purposes have been proven time and again. 

Legalization of marijuana, both medically and socially, can also substantially aid Veteran's coping with PTSD. 


IMMIGRATION
I have no issues with anybody coming to the United States as long as it is done legally. I will welcome anybody into this nation who has taken the same procedures to enter as we would expect from anyone else, or that would be expected from us when we travel to another country.

I do not support amnesty as the opportunity has been available to obtain the documents necessary to stay within our borders legally. Other problems created with amnesty are identifying and clarifying who would be eligible. I believe that granting amnesty would result in an influx of immigrants claiming eligibility. 

We need to work to secure our borders by taking the steps necessary to vet immigrants and refugees alike in order to help ensure that we do not meet with the unintended consequences of accidentally allowing in terrorists or criminals.

To be clear, this is not a problem that specifically relates to immigrants of Mexican origin. The problem persists across the country with individuals who have overstayed their visas or found other avenues to enter or stay within the country illegally. 

Mass deportations won't work. Building a wall won't work. Requiring people to go back to their home country just to come back won't work. Let's handle those within our borders from within, and handles those outside our borders as they arrive. 

Dreamers
We need to work to rectify this situation quickly. While I believe in the need for a process, I do not believe in punishing those who were brought here as small children. Many of these kids are as American as those who were born here, and we need to afford them the opportunity to continue to live in what may be the only country they know.
 

RELIGIOUS FREEDOM & MARRIAGE EQUALITY
I believe that every American has the right to worship as they see fit, however the interloping of government and religion is unacceptable. When it comes to religious freedom and marriage equality one does not impact the other. I believe in marriage equality. The constitution guarantees equal protections under the law and does so without regard to race, religion (or lack thereof), sex, or sexual orientation.  When it comes to marriage, the act has become a civil contract which is overseen by government, which precludes the government from discriminating in presenting marriage licenses to consenting adults. 

Churches and Marriage Equality
As it pertains to churches, though the government may recognize a marriage, a church is under its own authority not to recognize it based on their particular beliefs. 

Private Business
As it pertains to private businesses, a business owner withholds the right to refuse service to any customer at any time for any reason. If the owner decides to make the decisions on religious merit, that is of their own concern and not that of the government. If a private business owner makes the decision to refuse service based on religion they should be able to do so without the ability of those refused to litigate. The business owner can do so understanding that they must deal with whatever publicity, whether positive or negative, comes with it. Let the free market decide!

Litigation
If a customer is refused service based on a private business owners personal religious beliefs litigation should not be an option. Our legal system is overburdened as it is without the addition of that avenue. Those refused should simply find a business who is willing to serve them.

Government Employees
The constitution of the United States prohibits the establishment of religion. A person in the employ of a government is, when acting within their capacity, a representative of the government. When acting within official governmental capacities a person does not maintain the right the refuse service based on personal religious beliefs, refusal based on religious grounds would constitute a de-facto establishment of government religion. A person in a tax-payer funded position (whether elected or appointed) acting within their official capacities must ensure equal protections at all times without regard to personally held beliefs. ​​


GET RID OF THE BOX
  As part of criminal justice reform it is critical that the box asking about criminal background be eliminated. While we consider individuals recently released from prison to have “paid their debt to society,” as a society we continue to make it difficult for the recently released to find employment. Ultimately there is a high probability in a return to the activity which previously resulted in incarceration, and increases likelihood of recidivism.
 
This process is costly to all involved, including the taxpayer. It is time we begin to actually act like they are “clean with the house.” Legally, they are paid up and are at a zero balance. Let’s ensure they can obtain the jobs that will help them become productive members of society.

MAKE DAYLIGHT SAVINGS TIME PERMANENT
Let’s be honest, I think most of us are tired of the time change every six months. It has gone well beyond its relevance and it is time to stick with one plan in perpetuity.