Educated citizens drive economic growth and development. Let's give our children the opportunity to achieve more than we ever dreamed possible. We must put resources back into our schools to ensure quality education. Our educators deserve better pay for the work they do, and increased pay will attract the next generation of great educators as well. Everyone deserves a quality education, and it starts with funding quality education.
Affordable healthcare should be available to all. There is no reason anyone needs to suffer from preventable or easily treated illness or disease. I support the Affordable Care Act, especially its protections for preexisting conditions and the creation of insurance exchanges to buy private healthcare insurance. As a state, we should take advantage of all programs available to us to improve the basic quality of life of our citizens and their health. That starts with expanding Medicaid as allowed under the Affordable Care Act (after all, we have already paid for it!).
We can and must stand together to protect the equal rights and dignity of all people, regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender or gender identity, sexual orientation, or any other basis for unreasonable and systemic bias.
We need to support and nurture local businesses to keep our economy growing and to keep jobs right here in North Carolina. Making sure our citizens are healthy and educated, while ending regressive and discriminatory policies, will attract companies to invest and grow in North Carolina. We must also focus on sustainable development because we only have one Earth. We owe it to ourselves and future generations to respect our natural resources and minimize our negative environmental impacts.
Everyone deserves an equal voice in their government, and no district should be drawn to favor one party, group, organization, or viewpoint over another. Simply put, the voters should choose their representatives; representatives should not choose their voters. Independent redistricting will ensure that not only does every voice matter, but that each voice matters equally.
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JD Wooten was a member of the U.S. Air Force. Reference to his military service and photographs in uniform do not imply endorsement by the Department of the Air Force or the Department of Defense.
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