Our country will continue to face challenging times. These arise not just from our worst recession since the ’30s, but from the uncertainties of a rapidly changing world.
Our Congress is at the center of both those challenges and their solutions. I know from my prior service that it’s impossible to describe or anticipate every challenge or solution. But I also know that we must prioritize and act on what we know we face now and believe we will face later.
The following are just some of my priority issues for our national government. New issue agendas with principles and specifics will be released periodically throughout the next few months. As they are released, they will be posted here for your review. I welcome your comments and suggestions.
Preserving Hawaii - May 19, 2012
Advancing Women's Rights - April 28, 2012
Protecting Our Earth - April 22, 2012
Advancing UH and Hawai`i Higher Education - April 11, 2012
Balancing Our Budget - April 7, 2012
Assuring Our Energy Needs - February 29, 2012
Fixing Washington - February 6, 2012
Enhancing Hawaii's Defense Community - January 26, 2012
Strengthening Tourism - January 19, 2012
Growing Our Economy - January 11, 2012
Break Partisan Gridlock
We must forge a new way of governance that rejects pure partisan politics and incorporates our best ideas regardless of origin.
- Reach across the aisle for broad inclusion
- Act and vote for people and not party first
- Reject culture of no regardless of party
- Participate in Outside-The-Beltway efforts to reform Washington
Secure Our Homeland
We must provide for our common defense against the reality of terrorism and international uncertainty.
- Strengthen terrorism prevention efforts both internally, at our borders and overseas
- Maintain a strong military and take care of our troops both in the field and at home
- Strengthen our intelligence capabilities and continue needed reforms
- Support our President/military’s plans for withdrawal from Iraq and stabilization of Afghanistan
Lead Our World
We must work within our global community toward worldwide peace and prosperity.
- Continue policy of constructive engagement with rest of world especially Asia
- Work to fulfill the promise of the United Nations
- Work with other countries to address problems states such as North Korea and Iran
- Continue international nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament efforts
Invest In Our Future
We must provide the foundation and tools today with which our next generations can succeed.
- Support proposed reforms to No Child Left Behind
- Support healthy families initiatives
- Support fair accessibility to higher education through affordable student loan programs
- Address today’s problems today and without handing them off to our children
Fulfill Our Promises
We must preserve and strengthen Social Security and Medicare and fulfill our commitments to our veterans and others.
- Lockbox Social Security trust funds and kick habit of spending them for non-SS purposes
- Amend unfair Medicare reimbursement formula as applied to Hawai‘i
- Fully fund all veterans health, education, housing and other entitlement programs
- Support continued affordable pension guaranty programs
Care For Ourselves
We must assure available healthcare and help our fellow citizens in need.
- Improve our new health care reform law with addition of tort reform and other cost controls
- Continue welfare reform efforts of past decades
- Focus federal health care efforts in Hawai‘i on Hawai‘i-specific needs e.g. disproportionate ethnic illnesses
- Support community health centers, telemedicine and other health care components of greater utility in island state
Strengthen Our Country
We must include all Americans in our national decisionmaking and demand integrity and honesty in our governance.
- Continue Talk Story with Congressman Ed Case open community meetings throughout district
- Continue to push envelope on interactive e-communications with constituents
- Reform earmarks to break corrosive connection among earmarks, lobbying and campaign contributions/support
- Reform campaign contribution laws to continue to exclude corporations
Cherish Our Country
We must keep alive, strengthen and hand down to the next generations the foundations and values of our great nation.
- Defend our Constitution
- Defend civil rights and basic freedoms
- Fulfill my constitutional duties as a member of a separate, independent and coequal branch of government
- Educate fellow citizens especially our youth on our government and system
Perpetuate Our Hawai‘i
We must preserve the soul of our special home and pass it on.
- Support federal recognition for Native Hawaiians in full consultation with all citizens of Hawai‘i
- Support federal health, education, business and other programs targeted to Native Hawaiian community
- Maximize federal assistance to Hawai‘i-specific environmental protection efforts
- Reject one-size-fits-all federal programs without full appreciation and accommodation of our ethnic, cultural and place of origin diversity
Again, this agenda just scratches the surface, and does not specifically address current priorities such as financial and immigration reform. And again, my prior record also provides a good indication of the goals I will pursue if re-elected.