Principles, Not Partisanship

I am running for the Virginia State Senate because I believe in speaking out against the petty partisanship, injustice, and extremism that contradict The Virginia Way of legislating for the Commonwealth’s citizens.

Transparency

While Virginia has made considerable progress on reforms that make our government more transparent, continued progress is required in areas such as public access to information. For example, Virginia has a very weak Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) law with too many exemptions that allow government officials to conduct business behind closed doors. It is imperative that we maximize transparency at both the state and local level to increase the public’s trust and ensure that government is more open, accountable, and efficient.

Fiscal Responsibility

Virginians have high expectations when it comes to the quality and quantity of services that the Commonwealth provides. However, many Virginians are also struggling to keep up with the taxes and fees assessed by the Commonwealth to fund our government. It is vital that those we entrust with stewardship over our tax dollars are both constrained by an understanding of the proper role of government and remain vigilant in ensuring that services are delivered with the utmost efficiency. I will work to reduce taxes, just as I have on the Leesburg Town Council, and allow working Virginians to keep more of their hard-earned money.

Healthcare

Despite recent efforts at the federal and state level to improve access to healthcare, Virginians are now faced with fewer coverage options and healthcare that is less affordable than ever. We need to reduce burdensome regulations on the healthcare sector and continue to encourage alternative healthcare provider models such as direct primary care and cash-only hospitals. Our primary focus should always be to make healthcare more affordable, so that we can reduce the number of people who must rely on government assistance in order to have access to quality care.

Education Reform

While education spending continues to climb year after year, educational outcomes have remained static, and in some ways have even deteriorated. Although Virginia has the best teachers in the country and our schools score above average in many metrics, we continue to struggle with a significant achievement gap, systemic shortcomings in college and career preparedness, and a lack of educational choices. I would take nothing off the table, including efforts to expand Education Savings Accounts and tax credits, better support for home schooling, and encouraging the development of more charter schools. Rather than continuing to enforce rigid accountability models that overemphasize standardized tests and dictate one-size-fits-all solutions, we need to find ways to increase flexibility and incentivize school districts to create more specialized programming that reflects the diversity of the student body.

Transportation

The quality and duration of our commutes and other routine travel impact the lives of Northern Virginians on a daily basis, perhaps more than any other issue. Yet many of our elected representatives seem unwilling or unable to address this fundamental problem. It’s essential, as Northern Virginia continues to grow, that we facilitate and fund a range of transportation options. The Silver Line will never be the silver bullet fixing all our transportation issues. We need to advocate continuously for a fair allocation of transportation dollars from the state, and use our available funds in ways that maximize our ability to accommodate the transportation demands of our robust economy. Northern Virginia cannot be expected to fund the rest of the state’s needs while our own transportation infrastructure remains inadequate and underfunded.