My core philosophy of government can be defined in the wisdom of the Founding Fathers, who understood that certain unalienable rights are granted by God — life, liberty, pursuit of happiness — and that government cannot take them away because they were not granted by government in the first place. I believe our Founders intended our government to be small and unobtrusive and that attempts to significantly enlarge and expand the role of government end up assaulting our freedoms. I believe limited government is more efficient and compassionate. What we have now in Washington and Illinois is the opposite — bloated, inefficient and abusive to its people.
What this translates into today is that we are at a crossroads. America is on the precipice of earth shattering breakthroughs in technology, medicine, energy and transportation. These breakthroughs — dubbed “breakouts” in Newt Gingrich’s excellent new book — can vastly enhance our lives through greater prosperity, stunning new medical procedures and limitless domestic energy. The future is ours if we can transform our antiquated political philosophy of stifling government regulation and spending into an efficient, modernized model unleashing these exciting new technologies instead of smothering them. In other words, if we apply the wisdom of our Founders to today’s breakthrough advancements, the next chapter of American history can be our best.
American education is in desperate need of reform at all levels. We are too reliant on old, rigid models that are restricting choices and locking too many of our children into failure. Our higher education system costs way too much and is not taking advantages of modern technologies that could dramatically improve the product at significantly lower costs. Nowhere else in our culture are we lagging this far behind our potential, and that disconnect will dramatically undermine our potential as a country unless we come to grips with it. We need to strip away our rigid constructs and allow parents and students more choices in their journeys to build their futures.
One of the biggest impediments to a bright future is the strangulation of the American economy by an out-of-control and unaccountable regulation. To put this in perspective, one estimate said it cost $1.8 trillion to merely put in place federal regulations in 2013 — a figure larger than the entire government in the 1990s. That estimate did not take into consideration the damage it did to our economy. Our regulatory agencies never stop growing and there’s no mechanism in place to review and retire unneeded bureaucracy and red tape. The massive agencies threaten to stifle the coming advancements in energy, medicine and transportation. We cannot allow this to happen if we are to reach our potential. During this campaign I will be advancing ideas to turn this trend around.
My business is health care benefits consulting so I know first hand the burdens Obamacare is placing on millions of Americans. The current legislation is unfair, unaffordable, and unworkable. I will work tirelessly to do whatever it takes to get rid of Obamacare and replace it with health care reforms that are simple, market-driven, effective and compassionate. Our health care system is on the verge of exciting new breakthroughs that will transform the lives of millions of Americans for the better and we need a health care system that allows these transformations to occur instead of stopping or delaying them.
I’m a strong believer that taxes should only be imposed to fund core functions of government and additional taxes only serve as a restriction on the liberty and freedom of Americans. In addition, our ridiculously complex tax code serves as an impediment to our rebirth as a great country. We cannot continue to spend valuable time and resources complying with a massively duct-taped tax code that long since has ceased to be coherent and productive.
I believe our debt is out of control and must be reduced in order to preserve our children’s future. I believe career politicians of both parties have failed the American people by living well beyond our means and I will be a strong advocate for eliminating government waste, fraud and abuse. I further believe that most of the federal government is archaic and inefficient and needs to be modernized so it works to help rebuild America’s future instead of holding it back.
As an Army veteran and West Point graduate, I am a firm believer that America’s military strength is a force for peace. In the absence of American strength, the world becomes more unstable and prone to war. I am disturbed at the current administration’s dismantling of our military strength and the lack of forceful leadership on the world stage. The military should never be above spending scrutiny. However, we must recognize that our armed forces and nation pay a long-term price by projecting weakness rather than strength.
America is in the midst of the biggest advancement in domestic energy production ever — a development that already is supercharging our economy in some states. We must allow this to happen in order to unleash profound benefits to American consumers and a dramatic lessening of our reliance on foreign sources. We can either embrace these technological advancements or choose the path of stifling them in a morass of ideologically driven regulations meant to force feed energy sources that are not economically feasible.
As an Army veteran, I strongly believe in the Second Amendment. I believe citizens have an absolute right to protect themselves and their families and oppose efforts to impose additional failed liberal gun control measures that infringe upon that constitutional right and have proven not to work.
I believe strongly as someone who grew up in a border state that we must solve the immigration problem by first securing the border and then providing a pathway for legal immigration that is business friendly and doesn’t disadvantage those already in line for citizenship. I am wary of comprehensive solutions that won’t solve the problem methodically in a logical way.
My Christian faith informs me that marriage is intended to be between one man and one woman and that society should resist the temptation to redefine that fundamental building block. I believe the federal government should leave the issue to states to decide.
My faith also informs me that life begins at conception and that the sanctity of all innocent lives should be protected. I am heartened that the pro-life movement continues to gain ground in the hearts and minds of citizens. Unlike the incumbent senator, who takes a hard-line, ideological position out of the mainstream of Illinois citizens, I favor common sense restrictions on abortions such as parental notification and a ban on late-term abortions.