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On the Issues

Reproductive Freedom & Abortion Rights

I am proud to be the only person in this race to be endorsed by Planned Parenthood and Reproductive Freedom for All, because they know that I will fight the MAGA extremists in Congress just like I did in the state legislature, where I led the bill to repeal our state’s 1864 abortion ban. 


In Arizona, we are seeing just what happens when our fundamental reproductive freedoms are rolled back at the federal level. We cannot let a patchwork of extremist Republican legislatures take away our fundamental freedoms. In Congress, I will:

  • Take on MAGA extremists trying to roll back our rights and fight to codify abortion access at the federal level once and for all by passing the Women’s Health Protection Act 

  • Recognize reproductive care is more than just a healthcare issue: it’s an economic and racial justice issue

  • Push to pass bills like the EACH Act, which would repeal discriminatory laws like the Hyde Amendment that exists only to punish people for being poor by putting essential abortion care out of reach for marginalized and low-income communities

  • Expand the Supreme Court and end the filibuster to ensure an outdated Senate rule and a right-wing judicial majority doesn’t stand in the way of protecting our fundamental freedoms

Climate Change & the Green New Deal

I look at this issue through the lens of my son, EJ. Last year, when he and his classmates came back to school, they didn’t have recess for almost a month because of the extreme heat that we experienced here in the state of Arizona. I always worry about him and his future — the heat we’re facing, the sustainability of our water, the protection of our natural resources. Climate change is here now, and we need to take bold steps in Congress to protect our planet, our water and our communities. In Congress, I would:

  • Support federal investment  in water sustainability technology that can help us generate new ways to reduce our groundwater use and preserve our water for generations to come 

  • Strengthen the Clean Water Act, to protect more of Arizona’s and America’s waters from pollution and overuse

  • Ensure home weatherization and investment in shade trees

  • Incentivize businesses to move towards renewable energy, so that we transition from fossil fuel to more clean energy, and they become full partners in water conservation

  • Invest in new green union jobs, right here in the district 

  • Advocate for a Green New Deal to transition to 100% clean and renewable energy 


Economic Justice & Union Jobs

In Arizona, just like across the country, working families have watched as our policies make corporations and billionaires richer while everyone else is left behind simply trying to make ends meet. Our families are struggling to put food on the table and gas in their tank, and they’re facing skyrocketing house prices. And why? Because of corporate greed. It’s our families paying the price.


It’s time to make the wealthy few pay their fair share and reinvest economic growth in America’s working class. In Congress, I would:

  • Make sure corporations, billionaires and millionaires pay their fair share and invest that money back in jobs, housing, and healthcare for the people of Arizona’s 3rd Congressional District

  • Fight corporate greed, and hold our corporations accountable to fair standards and consumer protections to end price gouging that hurts our communities

  • Work to raise the federal minimum wage to at least $15/hour

  • Defend every worker’s right to organize and join a union by passing the PRO Act 

  • Invest in public education, which so often is the start of equal opportunities in our communities. When our students are holistically supported in our public schools, they are holistically set up for success after graduation

  • Support collaborative approaches to studying blockchain and crypto innovation, which have the potential to provide more equitable access to capital. We must work towards establishing industry guidelines that support an equitable American economy for all by creating a modern regulatory framework that provides clarity and transparency, allows access to these technologies for all Americans so that their full potential can be harnessed, encourages innovation and equitable growth while ensuring strong protections for consumers and workers and enables the transfer of money across borders without exorbitant fees


Comprehensive Immigration Reform

I was born and raised on the street that divides the United States from Mexico on the Arizona border. Growing up, I saw how important the border is to our Arizona economy - Mexico is our number one trade partner. When I witnessed anti-immigrant sentiment rise and hate start to take hold in our community, I got involved in community organizing and politics. And I will take that fight to Congress. 


Just like every other family in AZ-03, immigrant families deserve to be treated with dignity, safety, and given opportunities to succeed in our district.  Comprehensive immigration reform starts with centering people when we are talking about our broken immigration system. This is a humanitarian crisis, and we must fight back against extremists who play political games with our immigrant community.


Comprehensive immigration reform must: 

  • Include a pathway to citizenship for all immigrants in this country

  • Provide permanent protections for DREAMers 

  • Reform our asylum process to be better equipped to efficiently accept more refugees and asylum-seekers

  • End mass deportation and close the for-profit detention centers run by corporations who have monetized suffering and lined the pockets of Republican politicians. 

  • Prioritize humanity in our immigration system instead of the hate championed by Republican extremists


Housing as a Human Right

I was a renter myself for many years, so I know how hard it is to pull together a security deposit and first and last month’s rent and not know if your rent will go up the next year. Rents are too high, and buying a house is not possible for most Arizona families. I’ve seen so many people being displaced, and we must take action. 


Arizona is facing a housing crisis that started during the 2008 recession and has only been compounded by the pandemic. Republican leadership has given real estate tycoons and corporate developers free reign over our city to jack up prices, artificially limit housing supply, and push people out of Phoenix or onto the street.


Housing is a human right, and we can deliver on that right with federal policy. I would:

  • Crack down on predatory investors that have been looting with our housing supply 

  • Work to guarantee everyone safe, sustainable and permanently affordable housing

  • Increase investment in new public housing units, permanent affordable housing projects including wraparound services and funding for billions for our local housing authority for public housing repairs, climate resiliency and upgrades throughout the country

  • Send federal resources towards addressing the crisis of homelessness

  • Improve federal protections for the almost 50% of Phoenix households who rent by supporting nationwide rent control that includes caps on yearly rent increases, eviction protections to prevent landlords from arbitrarily evicting tenants, a federal right to counsel law so every tenant has a lawyer when facing eviction, and tenant unions so tenants have the power to keep their homes and defend themselves against predatory landlords 


Healthcare & Medicare for All

Healthcare is a human right, and if there’s one thing that the pandemic has made clear, it’s that we cannot afford anything less than Medicare for All. COVID-19 exposed all of the inequities in our healthcare system and proved why a patchwork of federal and state solutions is woefully inadequate to prepare us for the next pandemic. 


Everyone in this country deserves healthcare no matter their job, zip code, race, gender, immigration status, sexuality or disability. In order to better care for our neighbors, we must:

  • Pass Medicare for All 

  • Include coverage and investments for vision, dental, behavioral health, reproductive health and abortion care, and community-based long-term support services

  • Increase access to home care, specifically to get hundreds of thousands of disabled people off waiting lists for home care and ensure they have access to the care they and their families need

  • Realize that especially in cities like Phoenix, we see just how quickly inaccessible mental healthcare and addiction services compound into poverty, homelessness, and overdoses, and recognize that investing in Medicare for All helps us address the homelessness and affordability crises facing our communities 


Families should not have to choose between getting essential healthcare or paying rent. Medicare for All would mean no more copays, deductibles or premiums and lower prescription drug prices by giving our government the power to negotiate with greedy Big Pharma corporations. We can and must do better to ensure that no matter if you’re a millionaire or have just hit hard times, every person who needs healthcare has healthcare. 


Supporting Equitable Public Education

Eddie and I are parents of an eight year old, and there is no bigger decision we make together than what school our child will go to. Republicans have been defunding our public schools for many years, and in District 3, we have many schools that have been left behind. I am proud to have earned the endorsement of the Arizona Education Association, because our teachers & school staff - the experts - know that I will fight for them and for all of our schools. 


I strongly believe that every child deserves access to a great, free public education — regardless of their socioeconomic background, race, or zip code – and free from the control of extremist Republicans who want to dictate what our children can and cannot learn. 


I’m running for Congress to put federal dollars back in Arizona public schools and ensure that no child is punished for growing up in the “wrong” neighborhood. Children are our most precious resource and we should be putting every dollar we can to ensure that they have the ability to reach their full potential and the future they deserve without segregation, discrimination, or violence. That includes:

  • Investments in paying our teachers higher wages

  • Implementing nationwide universal free school lunches

  • Investing equitably across school districts, early child care resources, universal free pre-kindergarten, greening infrastructure, and expanding the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act to fully fund equitable education for all children

  • Ensuring that all public colleges, universities and vocational programs are as close to tuition-free as possible and that we provide relief for crippling student loan debt 


Defending Democracy

When I first started organizing, I was honored to help plan the 2006 march for immigrant rights here in Phoenix. Our message: Today, we march, tomorrow, we vote. I took that message to heart, and it has guided my work in community organizations, as Chair of the AZ Democratic Party, and as Minority Leader in the Arizona Senate. I’m proud to have earned the endorsement of End Citizens United.


Arizona has been ground zero for the Republican assault on our democracy, and I have been proud to lead the fight to protect our fundamental democratic values and defend our state from election deniers and MAGA extremists. But we cannot let our democracy be a fight that is won or lost at a state level — this is about the future of our nation and it requires bold, federal action to protect our elections from interference or attacks once and for all.


We must pass comprehensive voting rights legislation that:

  • Protects the right to vote

  • Rolls back discriminatory voting rights laws like those we’ve fought against here in AZ

  • Ends partisan gerrymandering

  • End the Citizens United ruling, which has led to an explosion of dark money and corporate PAC spending flooding campaigns, allowing a handful of billionaires and millionaires to buy our elections

And we must work tirelessly to pass comprehensive campaign finance reform and put our elections back where they belong: in the hands of the people


Gun Violence Prevention

Our kids and our communities deserve real safety, investment and opportunities. Gun violence is a policy choice. We need real action at the federal level to keep all our loved ones and neighbors safe. 


We must: 

  • Pass common-sense gun safety legislation like bills to ban assault weapons that are responsible for the mass shootings that have become all too normal

  • Expand background checks & close dangerous loopholes

  • Support safe storage laws

  • Repeal laws that protect the gun lobby and its corporate donors from accountability


The only thing standing in the way of protecting Arizona families from the real threat of gun violence is the Republicans who are happier cashing a check from the NRA than saving a child’s life.


Criminal Justice Reform

In America, we have one of the world’s most expensive and punitive criminal justice systems, wasting taxpayer dollars on failed systems of mass incarceration and over-policing that have never resulted in reduction of crimes or increased public safety. I support our law enforcement officials who contribute to justice and safety here in our city. But I’m also not afraid to hold those who abuse power accountable, just like I did when we ousted Sheriff Joe Arpaio. 


I’m running for Congress to make our communities safer; that’s why we must adequately fund public education, make healthcare and abortion affordable and accessible, expand affordable and public housing, and put money in people’s pockets to guarantee our communities are safe.


In the meantime, we should rollback some of our justice system’s most outdated and primitive tactics by: 

  • Banning the death penalty

  • Ending cash bail that criminalizes people for being poor

  • Stopping mandatory minimum sentencing laws

  • Ending the failed War on Drugs starting with legalizing marijuana and expunging the records of those arrested for cannabis-related crimes


For too long, politicians have relied on our criminal justice system to be a universal solution to any crisis they want to ignore. It’s time to build a future where addiction is a healthcare issue, homelessness is a housing issue, and stealing baby formula is a poverty issue. 


LGBTQ+ Rights and Protections

Nationwide, we have seen Republicans drum up their attacks on LGBTQ+ people—especially trans and nonbinary folks—in a full-on assault on their human rights and civil liberties. Make no mistake, for Republicans, these attacks are nothing more than distractions so you won’t be paying attention when they cut your social services to give tax cuts to their billionaire donors. But for our LGBTQ+ siblings, these are attacks on their identities, their fundamental rights, and their safety.


In Congress, I will always advocate with the LGBTQ+ community against discrimination, hate, and violence and demand passage of the long overdue Equality Act to ensure federal protections for LGBTQ+ people and their families from discrimination. 

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