Michael Pullen for Congress

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I want to run for Congress because the people of Maryland’s 1st District deserve a representative who cares and works for them. Donald Trump and Rep. Andy Harris do not understand the real problems of the people they supposedly represent, nor how to help. Rep. Harris is completely out of touch while the rest of us struggle with healthcare costs, stagnating wages, and rising seas. Voters in the 1st District deserve a representative who listens to them, fights for them, and makes government work for them. With your help, I can do that for you in Congress.

Key Issues

PULLEN FOR WOMEN

Our society is one that indefensibly creates double standards for men and women. Women are objectified, harassed, and face gender-based violence on a daily basis. Make no mistake, this is a societal problem that must be addressed head-on at a national level.

The Federal government has a duty to ensure that all citizens, regardless of gender, are treated equally. Yet under the current administration, the rights of women to self-autonomy have faced unprecedented attack. From Congress’s proposed ban on funding for Planned Parenthood, to State legislatures attempting to unconstitutionally roll back pro-choice protections, Republican ideology is clearly getting in the way of protecting women’s health and furthering gender equality.

PULLEN FOR EDUCATION

Education is more important today than ever before. Yet, for far too many, attending a trade school or a 2 or 4-year college is out of reach. Talented and hard-working folks are being denied the opportunity to better themselves and build a better life for their families because they cannot afford the high cost of education. Investing in higher education builds strong families, a skilled 21st century workforce, a strong military, a strong economy, and helps all of us. It is an investment in our people and our Country.

Attending a trade school or 2 or 4-year college can be affordable - we have already done it. In 1971-72, a student could earn enough to pay tuition and fees at a 4-year public university by working minimum wage for roughly 6 weeks. In 2016-17, a student would have to work almost 28 weeks, roughly 6 1/2 months for the same education.

We promote our common interest when we fund higher education. It’s a forward-thinking investment in ourselves and each other. Today’s students become the parents, skilled workers, innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders of tomorrow. Each generation owes it to the next to pay it forward, to provide the same educational opportunities and build a strong, stable, and lasting foundation for opportunity in an ever-changing world.

PULLEN FOR HEALTHCARE

The United States is the richest nation in the history of the world. Yet, we are the only industrialized nation that does not provide universal healthcare to its citizens as a right. And yet, Americans pay more for health care than any other country in the world – even though we do not use more services than other countries.

Simply put, private health insurance costs more but provides less. We can’t afford to continue to pay more for less while private insurance and pharmaceutical companies continue to reap huge profits at our expense. We can and must do better, but it requires taking on the insurance and the pharmaceutical lobbies. This will not be easy but it is the right thing to do for the American people.

The health of our nation comes from the health of our people. While Medicare For All is a clear moral right, it also strengthens our people and our nation. It makes good sense, plain and simple. By strengthening our families and our children we protect our future by keeping America strong. Keeping families and children strong makes our workforce, our military, and our economy strong. It helps new generations enjoy the freedom that America offers.

PULLEN FOR FAMILIES

Families make up the backbone of America, yet we fail as a nation to support those families who most need our help. It is unacceptable for our great nation to be one of a small handful of countries not to require paid parental leave. It is unfair that low income parents must spend such a high proportion of their income simply to pay for childcare. It is unconscionable that the current administration sees fit to rollback nutrional standards on the lunches we feed our children. Yet these are problems we can fix, if we send politicians to Washington who make the working class their priority.

PARENTAL LEAVE should be an expected right in a society that wants its families to thrive. Along with New Guinea, Suriname, and a couple of island nations, the United States has the distinction of being one of the few countries that do not have national paid parental leave protections. Paid parental leave has been proven to lead to healthier children and stronger families. Providing the right to paid parental leave is an immediate method Congress could undertake to help better the lives of those they represent. This right will be one of my priorities if I am elected to serve the 1st District.

CHILD CARE TAX CREDITS are a common sense solution to the problem faced by working families in securing safe and nurturing childcare during working hours. Currently, low-income families can qualify for a tax credit to offset 35% of childcare expenses, but this percentage drops to 20% if you make $43,000 or more. As the typical family spends almost $12,000 per year in center-based childcare, this tax credit leaves too wide of a gulf for too many families. By being more generous towards our hardest working families, we can strengthen our communities and our country.