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Issues

Jobs and the Economy
Ensuring that every American who wants to work can find a job is Linda’s #1 priority. That is why she has been a leader in advancing the “Make It in America” Agenda. The idea behind “Make It in America” is simple: America needs to be a place where we build make things again. Over the past twenty years, our trade and tax policies have actually sent jobs overseas, weakening our manufacturing base and leaving wages and benefits stagnant.

Linda believes it does not have to be this way. American businesses and workers can compete — and win — against any nation in the world, if we have the right policies and ensure a level playing field. That is why Linda is working to create a national manufacturing strategy, to reform our tax code, to promote cutting-edge technology, and to make sure our trade agreements benefit average Americans, not foreign businesses. Rebuilding our economy will take time and hard work. It will not happen overnight, but Linda is committed to making it happen for the families of the 39th District.

Supporting Small Business

Linda knows that small businesses are the backbone of our economy and America’s job-creation engine. That is why she is working hard in Congress to provide critical financial support to small businesses in our neighborhoods, by enacting targeted tax cuts; improving the federal contracting and procurement systems; and increasing access to capital to help create new opportunities, grow existing businesses, and boost our economy. Linda proudly voted for the Small Business Jobs Act, a new law that gave small businesses—like the ones in your neighborhood—$12 billion in tax cuts to spur investment, growth, new starts, and hiring. Protecting and supporting the neighbors who own and operate our local businesses is a critical step in reducing our unemployment rate and improving the economy in Southern California.

Quality, Affordable Healthcare

Linda proudly voted for the Affordable Care Act, which will strengthen Medicare; prevent insurance company abuses like cutting your benefits when you get sick or refusing to cover you if you have a “pre-existing condition”; and make health insurance more affordable for 30 million hardworking American families across the United States.

The Affordable Care Act gives seniors free annual check-ups and other preventive care, and will close the prescription drug “donut hole.” It saves money by cutting billions in subsidies to private insurance companies. It also provides new tax breaks for small businesses that provide health insurance to their employees.

Linda believes that all Americans should have access to high quality, affordable healthcare, and that insurance companies should not stand between you and your doctor. She will keep fighting to improve America’s healthcare system.

In 2009, Linda introduced a bill to make it illegal for insurance companies to charge different rates solely on the basis of sex. That proposal has become law, ensuring that insurance companies can no longer discriminate against women. Additionally, Linda authored legislation to create “Collaborative Care Networks,” in which doctors, hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare providers can team up to provide high quality, low-cost care for uninsured families and those living in areas with a shortage of doctors. This concept, which will save taxpayer money while making families healthier, has also become law.

Ensuring a Clean Environment

Linda knows that cleaner air and cleaner water will help our children grow up healthier. That is why she has championed efforts to reduce dirty trucks and pollution on the 110 710 Corridor and in the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. She has secured federal funding for local water conservation, recycling, and other innovative projects so that we have cleaner oceans and reduced run-off. Linda has championed efforts to ensure that we protect our planet and conserve our precious natural resources for generations of Californians to come.

Make Our Schools Safer and More Effective

Linda believes that every child deserves an A+ education: no child should have education opportunities reduced simply because of the neighborhood he or she lives in. That is why Linda has worked to reform No Child Left Behind. Rather than being a mere slogan, it should be a fully funded program that invests in our students so that they can meet the high expectations we have for them. A quality education requires much more than an acceptable score on a multiple-choice test. It requires history, arts, music, and physical education, as well as involved parents, high quality resources, and outstanding teachers, counselors, and other support staff to ensure that no child falls through the cracks.

Moreover, Linda knows that children who do not feel safe at school do not achieve their full potential. That is why Linda created the “Safe Kids Initiative,” a package of bills to make schools safer and improve support systems. Linda knows that if students have their “outside the classroom” needs met, then they and their teachers can focus on their main jobs: teaching and learning. That is why she is proud to have supported efforts to provide after-school homework help to students in Whittier, anti-bullying education to students in South Gate, and anti-gang education to students in Artesia.

Working for Our Seniors

Linda believes that Social Security and Medicare are not handouts. They are benefits our seniors have earned. That is why she opposes plans to privatize Social Security or reduce benefits for current retirees. Instead, Linda promotes policies to shore up the Social Security and Medicare Trust Funds, ensuring a stable and secure retirement for seniors in the 39th District, as well as for their children and grandchildren. She is committed to enabling our seniors to enjoy the golden years of life, rather than living in fear of poverty.

Honoring Our Veterans

Linda is dedicated to honoring the contributions of our service men and women. She wants to ensure that those who serve today have incentives to continue, those who served in the past are properly honored, and those who choose to serve in the future are coming into a military system that is the best in the world. That is why she has consistently voted to ensure that the promise of the original GI Bill is met, so that our veterans, young and old, receive all the education, healthcare, and disability benefits to which they are entitled. She is also pleased to work with local veteran Jose Ramos to create a federal day honoring the service of Vietnam Veterans.

Improving Transportation Infrastructure

Linda has secured funding for clean buses, well-lit bus shelters, and wider and safer roadways throughout the 39th District. She has been a champion for improved highways and roads. She has fought to ensure that LA’s Metro Rail better serves the needs of our local community. She also supports efforts to improve Metrolink and Amtrak and build high-speed rail to give you more and better options for long distance travel.

Fighting for Women's Rights

Linda has proven her dedication to advancing women's rights. She proudly voted for the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, to restore a woman’s right to challenge discriminatory pay decisions in the workplace. She is fighting to ensure that interested American women can train for high skills jobs where they have been typically underrepresented, including plumbing, electrical, and other well-paid construction work. Linda is also a strong advocate for policies that protect women's health and the right to choose. She has voted to ensure that women have equal opportunities to study advanced science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Reforming Our Immigration System

America is a country built and sustained by immigrants. Linda is committed to comprehensive immigration reform, including secure borders, a speedy an efficient and affordable application system, and humane treatment for all immigrants. She is working hard in Congress to make sure that hard-working immigrants are able to reunite with their loved ones and to make sure that our homeland security efforts are properly targeted toward those who would do us harm.

Linda believes that hardworking but undocumented immigrants should have the opportunity to earn legal status by paying taxes and fines, learning English, and demonstrating their commitment to the community. That is why she supports the DREAM Act. At the same time, Linda supports stronger penalties for unscrupulous employers who hire undocumented workers in order to drive down wages, benefits, and safe workplace standards.

Taxes

Linda believes that taxes should be simple and fair—Americans should not have to hire an accountant or a tax lawyer just to make sure they are paying the right amount.  That is why she is working to reform the tax code so that we all pay a fair share: the burden of paying taxes should not fall the hardest on middle-class families.  

Linda knows that average families cannot afford lobbyists to speak up for them when the tax code is being rewritten. That is why she is working hard to be the voice of the families of the 39th District.  She also believes that by increasing efforts to collect taxes that are owed but not paid, and rooting out waste, fraud, and abuse in the federal budget, the federal government can be more efficient with the money it already has.

Labor and Working Families

Linda is a champion for working families.  A Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the Labor and Working Families Caucus, she supports efforts to ensure that all Americans can earn a decent wage that enables them to pay for food and shelter for their families.  That is why she has been a leader in efforts to increase the minimum wage, promote workplace safety, protect pension benefits, and ensure that workers who want to form a union can do so.  

She has worked hard to create well-paying American jobs and ensure that those who have lost jobs in this troubled economy have a safety net to fall back on.  She fought staunch Republican opposition to extend unemployment benefits to 2.5 million families who would have otherwise been left out in the cold. For her efforts, Linda was recently awarded a “Best of Congress” Award by Working Mother Media and Corporate Voices for Working Families.

Trade

As a member of the President’s Export Council, Linda is a strong advocate for increased exports. She knows that if America sells more goods abroad, we create jobs and grow our economy at home.  Unfortunately, our past trade agreements, like NAFTA and CAFTA,  have had the opposite effect: they have killed jobs and increased trade imbalances with our trading partners.  

That is why Linda is fighting for a new trade model—one that will open markets for American goods overseas without giving businesses incentives to send jobs offshore.  Linda is fighting to ensure that trade policies include high labor and environmental standards and do not give foreign businesses the opportunity to challenge our health, safety, and environmental laws in foreign tribunals.  Linda will continue her efforts to ensure that future trade agreements promote the interest of American working families, not just the interests of foreign corporations. 

Promoting Clean Energy

Linda believes that by investing in clean energy technology, we revitalize our economy by creating millions of new jobs and make our environment cleaner as well. We know that the world’s oil supply is finite: it will run out. We currently send $400 billion a year overseas to pay for foreign oil. The bottom line is this: doing nothing is not an option.

By acting now to create more energy from wind, solar, biomass, and other alternative energy sources, California can be a leader in these new industries. Besides reducing pollution and creating millions of new jobs, investing in clean energy now will lessen our dependence on volatile Middle East nations whose interests at times conflict with ours. And California, always on the forefront of the nation’s economy, will be well poised to reap the benefits for our workers and business people.

Civil Rights for All

Linda believes that all Americans, regardless of race, class, gender, disability, sexual orientation, or any other factor deserve the same rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. That is why she opposes laws that deny civil rights and liberties. She supports the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and the “Defense of Marriage Act.” Linda is working to protect all children from bullying and harassment and defend a woman’s right to choose. Additionally, Linda is working to ensure that efforts to keep Americans safe do not destroy the very freedoms we treasure.

Housing

The housing crisis has hit our community especially hard—with many neighborhoods in the 39th District experiencing an epidemic of foreclosures. While there is plenty of blame to go around, Linda is focused on solutions that will help families stay in their homes and stabilize the market for the long-term. She introduced legislation to help 155 housing developments to move forward this year and provide more than 16,000 jobs and nearly 13,000 affordable homes in California alone. In addition, she has been working to ensure that judges have the opportunity to modify home mortgages when a family goes into bankruptcy and that banks that took bailout funds stop hoarding that money and instead start lending it to responsible homebuyers and businesses in our community.