"I come from a proud family that has been involved in public service for as long as I can remember. I want to work for you. We need to create more living wage jobs, improve our schools, and make public safety, gun control in particular, a top priority. With nearly a decade of government experience, I know what it takes to find solutions, navigate complicated governmental agencies, and get things done."

 LIST OF ISSUES

 

Improve Education

 

Recently, Alabama 8th graders ranked 50th in the nation in math proficiency.  Alabama's teachers are underfunded, and our class sizes are too big to be effective.  Additionally, less than 50% of Alabama students who start higher education graduate with a degree.

 

Quick Facts

  • Alabama schools score in the bottom 40% for graduation rates and test scores.

  • College readiness is only at 18% in Alabama.

  • Employability of students is only at 31% in Alabama.

  • Only 25% of Alabama 8th graders scored proficient in reading.

  • Only 33.7% of Alabamians attain a higher education, the 8th worst in the country.

 
 
Jesse’s Plan

  • Debt-free College

    • Tuition-free college for all students.

  • Better Funding for Public School

    • Allocate more funding for teachers and students and less on athletics.  Expand education budget.

  • Smaller Class Sizes

    • Decrease class sizes for better learning and create more jobs in the process.

  • No Experience, No Regulation

    • Require educational experience for all members on the school board.

 

Back to top.

 

Rebuild the Middle Class

 

We are living in the richest country in the history of the world, but many Alabamians wouldn't know it.  900,000 people are living in poverty in Alabama, 300,000 of those are children.  That's more than 1 in 4 children in Alabama living in poverty.  Our wages have been stagnant while almost all economic growth goes to the top 1%.

 

Quick Facts

  • Alabama is the 3rd poorest state.

  • Alabama has the 3rd highest rate of child poverty.

  • Alabama has the 2nd largest income inequality gap

  • Alabama has the 5th highest gender wage gap with Alabama women only making 72.6 cents to a man's dollar.

 

Jesse's Plan

  • $15 Minimum Wage

    • Gradually increase all wages until the minimum wage reaches $15.

  • Trade Reform

    • Stop corporations from shipping jobs to other countries with less regulation.

  •  

  • Equal Pay for Women

    • Women deserve equal pay for equal work.  Ending the wage gap is essential to alleviate poverty in Alabama.

  •  

  • Expand Social Security

    • Expand benefits that are currently less than 800 per month.  

    • Raise the cap on taxable earnings for Social Security.  Right now, a person making 180,000/year pays the same into Social Security as someone making 10 million/year.

  • Rebuild Infrastructure

    • Rebuild Alabama's crumbling infrastructure and create thousands of jobs in the process.

 

Back to top.

Healthcare, Not Health Insurance

 

Of the top 10 leading causes of death in Alabama, 9 are health-related. Meanwhile, 14.5% of Alabamians are uninsured, down from 17.7% since the ACA, and even more are underinsured.

 

Quick Facts

  • Alabama has the 2nd highest infant mortality rate.

  • Alabama is 1st in diabetes and 2nd in hypertension.

  • Alabama is 6th in inactivity.

  • 139,000 Alabamians fall into a gap in healthcare coverage.

 

Jesse's Plan

  • Universal Healthcare

    • Institute single-payer healthcare for every American, including mental health coverage. Expand Medicare and Medicaid until then.

  • Lower Prescription Prices

    • End price gouging by pharmaceutical companies and drug manufacturers.

  • Paid Sick Leave

    • Guaranteed paid sick time for every worker.

  • Paid Family Leave

    • Guaranteed family leave for every worker.

 

Back to top.

 

Stand Up for Human Rights

 

Black Rights 

Quick Facts

  • The poverty rate for African Americans in Alabama is 31.1%.

  • Unemployment for African Americans in Alabama is 10.9%.

  • The diabetes mortality rate in Alabama was 70% higher for African Americans than for Non-Hispanic Whites.

  • African Americans make up 54% of Alabama's prison population but only 26% of the state's population.

 

Jesse’s Plan

  • End Police Discrimination

    • Prevent and reverse policies that allow police to unfairly arrest and prosecute minorities.

  • Black Lives Matter

    • Automatic Department of Justice investigation whenever someone dies in police custody.

  • Fight Segregation

    • Continue to fight against segregation in our communities and schools.

  • Black Youth Jobs

    • Ensure Black youth are included in federal jobs bills.
       

Voting Rights

Quick Facts

  • Alabama was the birthplace of the Voting Rights Act.

  • Alabama has some of the most restrictive voting laws in the country.

  • Voter ID laws unfairly target low-income communities.

  • Alabama's voter turnout in 2014 was only 41%.


Jesse’s Plan

  • Democracy Day

    • Make election day a federal holiday so everyone has a better chance to vote.

  • End Discriminatory Voter ID Laws

    • End restrictive voter ID laws that prevent many low-income people from voting.

  • Automatic Voter Registration

    • Make voter registration automatic on a person's 18th birthday.

 
Women's Rights

Quick Facts

  • Alabama ranked 47th for poverty in working-age women.

  • 17% of violent crimes in Alabama are domestic violence incidents.

  • Alabama has the 5th highest gender wage gap with Alabama women only making 72.6 cents to a man's dollar.

  • In the US, 1 in 4 women experiences sexual assault on college campuses.
     

Jesse’s Plan

  • Contraceptives

    • Ensure access to birth control regardless of income.

  • Reproductive Rights

    • Protect a woman's right to make her own medical decisions.

  • Equal Pay for Women

    • Women deserve equal pay for equal work.  Ending the wage gap is essential to alleviate poverty in Alabama.

  • Early Childhood Education

    • Fund early childhood education for all children.

    

Immigrant Rights

Quick Facts

  • Households headed by undocumented immigrants paid $130 million in state and local taxes in 2010.

  • Undocumented immigrants make up 2.5% of the population in Alabama.

  • There are approximately 120,000 undocumented immigrants in Alabama.

  • One deportation costs taxpayers $23,482.

  • Restricting access to medical treatment for immigrants puts the public safety at risk.


Jesse’s Plan

  • Path to Citizenship

    • Create a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

  • End Harmful Immigration Policies

    • Put an end to harmful immigration policies like those in Alabama.

  • DREAM Act

    • Support the DREAM Act for young undocumented immigrants. 


LGBTQ Rights

Quick Facts

  • LGBT+ people in the US are disproportionately affected by poverty.

  • Alabama has one of the highest rates of LGBT+ couples raising families.

  • 41% of LGBT+ Alabamians are not out at work for fear of discrimination.

  • Only 30% of LGBT+ Alabamians have access to partner benefits for health insurance.

  • Alabama's Sex Ed classes are required to teach that homosexuality is unacceptable and illegal.

  
 
Jesse's Plan

  • End Workplace Discrimination

    • Prevent employers from discriminating based on gender or sexual orientation.

  • Limit School Bullying

    • Ensure schools properly address LGTBQ bullying.

  • Adoption

    • Ensure all people can adopt regardless of gender or sexual orientation.

  • Love Won

    • Ensure states like Alabama follow the Supreme Court's decision on marriage equality.

 

 

Back to top.

 

Veteran Care & Responsible Military

 

Only 8.9 million of the 22 million veterans in the US have VA health benefits.  In fact, there are 18,000 veterans without health insurance in Alabama alone.  Additionally, chronic homelessness affects veterans twice as much as other Americans.  We must take care of our veterans after they return home.

 

Quick Facts

  • There are approximately 410,000 veterans living in Alabama.

  • Alabama hospitals were rated worst for veteran appointment completion.

  • Veterans make up 33% of homeless males in the US.

  • 1.2 million veterans in the US lack health insurance.

  • Only 10% of the US defense budget goes to fight terrorism and conflicts in the Middle East.

 
 
Jesse's Plan

  • Veteran Care

    • Create a path to employment for veterans.

    • Establish better healthcare for veterans.

  • Funding

    • Reallocate defense funds to our troops and veterans instead of the military-industrial complex.

    • Decrease our bloated defense budget.

  • Responsible Military Action

    • Use appropriate military force only when diplomacy fails.

 

 

Back to top.

 

Reform Our Justice System

 

Alabama has made the news several times recently for police brutality, most notably in Tuscaloosa and Madison. Alabama also made national headlines with a 20% increase in overdose deaths from 2013 to 2014.  This is not how Alabama should be represented.
 

Quick Facts

  • Alabama has some of the most overcrowded prisons in the country.

  • 8,212 people are arrested each year in Alabama on drug offenses.

  • 723 people died from an overdose in Alabama in 2014.

  • Alabama does not have a 911 Good Samaritan Law.

  • Alabama ranked 3rd in the number of people sentenced to prison per capita.

 
 
Jesse's Plan 

  • Police Reform

    • Demilitarize police so they look less like oppressing forces.

    • Make police departments be a part of the communities they serve.

    • Allow good police to report misconduct without fear of retaliation.

  • End The War On Drugs

    • Treat addiction as a heath concern, not a criminal problem.

    • Remove cannabis from the list of Schedule 1 drugs.

    • End mandatory minimum sentencing.

  • End For-Profit Prisons

    • We cannot allow corporations to treat humans like inventory. End all for-profit prisons.

 

 

Back to top.

Environmental & Climate Change

 

The science is in, and climate change is real. Extreme weather is already affecting us. Alabama needs to join with the rest of the nation in fighting this threat.

 

The science is in, and climate change is real.  Extreme weather is already affecting us.  Alabama needs to join the rest of the nation in fighting this threat.


Quick Facts

  • 14 of the hottest years on record were in the last 16 years.

  • July 2015 was the warmest month ever recorded.

  • Higher global temperatures lead to more extreme weather events.

  • May 2015 was the wettest month on record in the continental US.

  • Alabama ranks 4th in the release of toxic chemicals into waterways.


Jesse's Plan

  • Tax Carbon

    • Institute a tax on all carbon.

  • No More Fossil Fuels

    • End our dependence on fossil fuels by phasing them out.

  • Clean Energy

    • Develop clean energy technology and create thousands of jobs in the process.

  • Cleaner Environment

    • Develop technologies to clean our water, land, and air.  Reinstate and strengthen environmental regulations.

 

Back to top.

End Political Corruption

 

Big bank lending to small businesses is down, leaving many small businesses with no choice but to build credit card debt or go to higher cost lenders.  Meanwhile, the biggest bank in the US spent $8 million lobbying Congress in 2012.
 

Quick Facts

  • Election spending topped $1 billion for the first time in 2012.

  • Super PACs accounted for over $600 million of that $1 billion.

  • Just 3 of the world's largest banks collected over $1.1 billion in only 3 months in 2015.

  • Alabama ranked 7th in corruption convictions per capita.

 
 
Jesse's Plan

  • Overturn Citizens United

    • Support overturning Citizens United which allowed unlimited amounts of money to go into politics.

  • End Gerrymandering

    • End strategic redistricting to swing elections.

  • Get Big Money Out of Politics

    • Fight for public financing of campaigns, the elimination of super PACs, and to keep big money interests out of politics.

  • Reinstate Glass-Steagall

    • Reinstate Glass-Steagall to regulate risky banking practices in the US.

 

Back to top.

 
 
 
 
 

How can we afford it?

 

The US spends more on defense than the next 7 countries combined, 5 of which are allies.  This funding does not go to our troops but instead to fund the military-industrial complex.  Additionally, Alabama Republican leaders recently decided to use much-needed funds to renovate the Governor's Mansion when our schools, environment, and infrastructure are also in disrepair.  Attorney General for Alabama, Luther Strange, has wasted hundreds of thousands of dollars to fight gambling on Native American lands.  It's this kind of wasteful spending that has put Alabama and the US in their current debt crises.
 
 
Quick Facts

  • USDA employees were found to be wasting $5.8 million in taxpayer funds for personal use.

  • The US spends up to $2 million annually to maintain empty or expired grants.

  • The US continues to acquire new properties while spending $25 billion to maintain empty properties.

  • The US spent $10 million on advertising the National Guard with the "Soldier of Steel" movie.

  • The US spends $92 billion on corporate welfare.

 
 
Jesse's Plan

  • Reallocate Funds

    • Reallocate our spending away from wasteful endeavors.

  • Lift the Social Security Cap

    • Remove the limit on taxable income for Social Security.

  • End Tax Loopholes

    • End loopholes that allow corporations and the 1% to not pay their fair share in taxes.

  • Wall Street Speculation Tax

    • Put a tax on risky Wall Street speculation.

  • Tax on Cannabis

    • Legalize cannabis for recreational use and tax it for funding.
       

 

 

Back to top.

Reasonable Gun Laws

 

More people were killed by guns in Alabama over the past 10 years than all U.S. combat deaths in the Iraq & Afghanistan wars combined.  Meanwhile, Congressman Mike Rogers has received both donations and an A rating from the NRA.


Quick Facts

  • A person is killed by a gun every 11 hours in Alabama.

  • 47 children aged 0-18 were killed by guns in Alabama in 2010.

  • Alabama has the 7th highest rate of gun ownership.

  • Alabama has the 4th highest rate of gun deaths.

  • Firearm homicide rates are 25 times higher in the US than in comparable countries.

 

Jesse's Plan

  • End Loopholes

  • End gun show loopholes.

  • Universal Background Checks

  • Thorough background checks on every firearm purchase.

  • Assault Weapon Insurance

  • Place a full coverage premium insurance on all assault weapons.

 

 

Back to top.

jts_pic_002