On the Issues:Social Welfare Programs

In the early 1900's President Franklin D. Roosevelt had the idea that America should, and must, do more to protect her citizens. A lesson from the Great Depression he learned was that there was a need for social safety net programs. These programs were designed to help people get back on their feet, or keep them afloat, as they dealt with hard times. Starting with Social Security and Medicare we took efforts as a nation to protect our seniors. This evolved over the years in the form of WIC, food stamps, and Medicaid. In the 1970's President Nixon, moved and inspired by the plight of people on dialysis, took the move to ensure that no American citizen would go broke paying for this program. They never saw these as "entitlements", but part of the overall social safety net.

It is in that spirit that I take my stand on these issues.

Food Stamps and Welfare

After losing my job in 2014 due to the company closing down, I was on food stamps and unemployment. These were tough times, and going on these programs was a last resort once I had no other resources left. Thanks to food stamps I was able to afford things like milk and chicken, as well as the occasional bag of cookies. The ability to choose what not only sustained me, but made me happy, helped me transition from looking for work to soon getting a full-time job and where I am today.

I will oppose any and all attempts to make cuts to SNAP and other food supplement income programs. Time and time again it has been shown that these programs are minor parts of the federal budget and the constant attack on some of the poorest Americans, as well as those seeking work, is disgusting. Additionally, I will seek to reduce the work requirements from 3 months into the program to 6 months.

Financial Assistance

Any single person who has been unable to find work and in need of financial assistance may know this story: They apply for benefits but are denied the ability to receive financial assistance since they have no children and no major health concerns. The idea is that people fitting that criteria should find work, and often that isn’t the case. I spent a year trying to get back into my field as a graphic designer and web coder, and it was one of the toughest years of my life. The knowledge that I had unemployment was the single biggest relief so I could continue to pay my bills and pay my mortgage.

If elected I will expand Financial Assistance programs to those who are single on a Federal Level. We must do all we can to help our fellow Americans escape poverty.


When I needed medical care while looking for work, I was fortunate enough to qualify for Medicaid. To this day it is the best health insurance I've ever had. I was able to see doctors without a hefty copay, afford the medicine I needed to survive, all without the fear of having to decide between paying a bill or getting the help I needed. I did this all while looking for work.

If elected, I will oppose any and all work requirements for Medicaid and seek to expand it into a Medicaid-for-All system. This is the most valuable service we provide to Americans and we need to protect it.

Social Security

In the 1930's a radical idea was proposed: A government retirement program to protect older Americans. This idea has persisted for generations and for decades people knew they were able to rely on this program to help them in their later years in life.

If elected, I will protect Social Security and oppose attempts to make cuts to this necessary program. While I do agree with the possibility of raising the retirement age, I think we need to find a way to roll it out.

Job Training Programs

We have more people working retail and not enough people going into the more technical crafts of plumbing, electrical work, and various other aspects of contracting. These are valuable skills that can get people into middle-class and union jobs. Additionally, we have a growing need for people in the tech industry who can fill in jobs that would otherwise go overseas.

I propose a program to help those on financial assistance to get job training in union, labor, and the tech industry. Companies and employers that opt-into this partnership program would get tax breaks and the ability to craft people for the jobs they need filled. Not only will that person learn some valuable skills for their company, but they will have skills to be helpful to society for life.

Universal Basic Income

Much like the radical idea of Social Security, we have reached a point where we're discussing Universal Basic Income. In essence, the idea is that every U.S. Citizen would be given a basic amount of money. Additional income would still be allowed to be accrued. Some variations of this idea have everyone getting this basic amount regardless of additional income while others see it similarly to Financial Assistance programs we currently have on an indefinite status.

While I do not fully support this concept at this point, I am open to the possibility that it presents to help ensure everyone has a basic standard of living. With the rise of automation we must begin to consider if such programs are necessary, so I would firmly support funding research into seeing if these programs could work in the future.