For far too long, our economy has been a tilted playing field in favor of the wealthiest Americans and corporate special interests, while middle- and working-class families struggle to make ends meet. Fixing this is not only a matter of growing our economy and making sure everyone has a fair shot at opportunity—it’s also about taking on greedy systems of power that reinforce economic inequality and hold Americans back.
We need to create sustainable jobs and reward work.
Every American deserves a good job, the dignity of hard work and a paycheck that allows them to pay the bills and save for their and their children’s futures. We need to make sure that everyone has guaranteed access to full employment, and that workers have the skills training and support to fill good-paying jobs and advance their careers. Our students need an education that provides the STEM skills and experience necessary for the jobs of the 21st-century economy. We should also treat the urgent need to act on climate change as an economic opportunity. When we invest in green technology, spur innovation and incentivize the use of renewable energy under the Green New Deal, we’ll also invest in massive new technical skills training and create family-supporting, sustainable jobs for the future.
We need to tackle economic inequality and raise wages.
It’s unacceptable that so many Americans are forced to work multiple jobs and make sacrifices just to take care of their families while the cost of living and corporate profits soar. Our economy should value and reward workers, not just CEOs and shareholders. We need to stop big corporations from making taxpayers subsidize astronomical paychecks for corporate officers. We need to raise the minimum wage to $15 nationwide and lift millions of families out of poverty. We need to empower more workers to share in the profits of their work by encouraging more companies to become employee owned. We should expand access to affordable banking services and virtually eliminate predatory lending by creating postal banking. We need to rein in Wall Street risk and protect our financial system so unchecked greed can’t hurt families again. We should stop the transfer of massive generational wealth that exacerbates economic inequality. And we need to reverse the Trump tax plan’s massive corporate tax cut and make sure that wealthy Americans and companies pay their fair share in taxes—we should be looking out for middle-class families, not giving handouts to millionaires and corporations.
We need to make it easier to be a working parent.
No one should ever have to choose between their family and a paycheck. And with more parents and women breadwinners in our workforce than ever, the days of dismissing policies that benefit working parents as “women’s issues” are long gone. We need a national paid family and medical leave program, equal pay for equal work and affordable, high-quality child care for every family.
We need to make college affordable and set students up for success.
Student debt is an out-of-control crisis in this country, and it isn’t just a burden on individual graduates—it’s a drag on the whole economy. We need to allow graduates and their families to refinance their student loans at lower rates, unleashing billions into the economy. We should make community college tuition-free, and we should work toward debt-free college by eliminating tuition and fees at public four-year colleges and universities for students from families that make up to $125,000 per year.
We need to make health care affordable for everyone.
Health care is one of the largest out-of-pocket expenses for middle- and working-class families nationally, and our health care system still leaves too many Americans hurting. We need Medicare for All to make high-quality, universal, affordable health care a reality for everyone. We also need to crack down on greedy drug companies that raise prices to the point of being out of reach. Kirsten has led the fight to lower the cost of health care and take on big pharmaceutical companies, including introducing legislation to hold companies accountable for price gouging.
We need to protect our social safety net for all Americans.
Millions of Americans depend on our social safety net to make ends meet, and we have to keep that promise. We need to protect and expand Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, and also refuse to allow politicians to cut lifelines for low-income families like CHIP, SNAP and WIC.
We need to protect American workers in a global economy.
America succeeds when workers succeed—and workers deserve a president who has their back. Kirsten has led on the fight to protect and strengthen workers’ rights and remove hurdles to forming unions and having a voice in the workplace. She’s fought for manufacturers and passed a law that will make critical federal investments to create good-paying manufacturing jobs and boost local economies across the country. She’s also led on legislation to stop corporations from shipping U.S. jobs overseas, stop federal tax dollars from subsidizing these companies, and reward companies that bring jobs back home.