07 Oct Steven Horsford
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Steven A. Horsford
Democrat for U.S. House of Representatives CD4
Candidate contact information:
Email address: Steven@StevenHorsford.com
Phone number: 775-291-8891
CANDIDATE QUESTIONNAIRE RESPONSES
Please share briefly what inspired you to run for this office and why you feel you’re qualified for the position.
I was inspired to run for Congress to continue to serve the people of my district and the underserved communities from where I come from. Economic inequality, education and healthcare disparities, and the plight of our working class are my motivation to serve. Having been a product of this community and having worked on these issues in the workforce development space, in the State Senate and now in Congress, is why I believe I can continue to be an effective advocate for these issues.
What policies would you pursue to diversify the state’s economy and create new jobs that pay a living wage?
We can create a well-diversified state economy by continuing to work closely with our brothers and sisters in the labor community, our local chambers, workforce development nonprofits, as well as our education institutions. Nevada's greatest assets are its diverse and vibrant residents, who make up the most talented workforces in the country. Nevada can compete if we have a partner in the federal government that collaborates with our small business community and our institutions of higher learning. As a member of Congress, I've utilized my position on the Ways & Means committee to ensure that the Departments of Commerce, Treasury, Small Business, and the Defense are working closely with our state leaders to foster opportunities and new industries in our state.
This Congress, House Democrats passed the Raise the Wage Act, which would lift the federal minimum wage to $15/hour. I believe strongly that a living wage requires a higher wage floor as well as strong collective bargaining rights to ensure that workers are being compensated fairly.
In 2019, Nevada joined the US Climate Alliance and took aggressive steps to address climate change by increasing our Renewable Portfolio Standard and encourage a shift to clean energy sources such as solar, geothermal, hydroelectric, and wind. What policies do you support to continue this effort, particularly in the transportation sector?
We need robust national infrastructure spending with an emphasis on green and energy efficient technology. As a member of the Ways & Means Committee, I've worked closely with House Democrats to push for a green infrastructure package that will invest in expanding these sectors.
With the possibility of the Affordable Care Act being repealed by the Supreme Court, including the Medicaid expansion and protections on coverage for preexisting conditions, what should be done to address the issues Nevada will face under that scenario?
House Democrats sued the Trump administration to prevent the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. I will continue to fight any efforts to dismantle the ACA and the gains that we've made in access. Further, I will continue to fight for a public option to further expand access.
What are your recommendations for paid sick days and paid family leave?
We need a national strategy for expanding these programs, and that is why I support federal legislation for mandatory paid family and sick leave.
In Nevada, childcare costs can sometimes exceed the cost of rent and public university tuition. What policy solutions will you support to substantially address these rising costs for families?
I believe that access to housing is a fundamental human right, and as such believe the federal government through HUD and other federal agencies should expand public and affordable housing programs. We need to expand both affordable housing units and expand housing payment assistance to low-income families.
What do you believe is the best approach ensure all of Nevada’s children have equal access to a quality education?
Ensuring that our children here in Nevada have equal access to a quality public school education is a multi-pronged process. 1) I believe that our teachers must be compensated for the extraordinary work that they do in educating our children, so I would devote additional resources to teacher pay. 2) Invest federal resources in to systemically underfunded and underperforming school districts across the country. 3) Invest in our children's education and development earlier. Our children's development begins before our K-12 education system begins.
The General Mining Act of 1872 was written to facilitate mineral extraction as quickly and cheaply as possible–leaving out federal royalties for mining. A lot has changed in 148 years, and since then, mining companies have left hundreds of thousands of abandoned mines across Nevada with the cleanup bill left to the taxpayers. How do you believe we should reform the 1872 General Mining Act to better protect taxpayers, land, and water?
Nevada has the largest share of public land of any state in the country, providing access for a variety of recreational and commercial uses. How would you address the issues related to public lands and their continued future uses?
As a member of the House Natural Resources Committee, the preservation and protection of our public lands is a fundamental mandate. The federal government, along with our state, has an important role as a caretaker of these precious and irreplaceable resources. I've advocated for resources to be devoted to the proper oversight of our public lands through the Interior Department, and will continue to do so as long as I continue to serve.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Indigenous women face murder rates more than 10 times higher than the national average. What do you think the federal government can do to address this issue?
Often times, violence against Indigenous women is committed by non-native peoples, and thus there a legal barrier for prosecuting this crime. Ultimately, we must expand tribal authority to allow for the prosecution of non-native abusers and offenders. To that end, Congress must pass and help implement Savanna's Act, which seeks to remedy this issue of a lapse in law enforcement.
The majority of Nevada’s children are children of color, and many families have been affected by current immigration policies, incarceration, and criminal sentencing policies, reducing economic prospects and civic integration. How would you work to address these issues to provide opportunities to all Nevadans?
The separation of families has been an unconscionable stain on our nation's history. The courts have ruled against this administration on the inhumane practice of child separations and the abhorrent conditions in ICE facilities. The criminalization of our immigrant communities has been a tragic and untenable turn in immigration law enforcement, and in Congress I have utilized my position to hold this administration accountable for it's actions and have advocated for a pathway to citizenship for our undocumented immigrants.
On criminal justice reform, I've worked with my colleagues within the Congressional Black Caucus to make progress on this issue. While Congress has made some progress through the First Step Act, we need to do more to tackle the scourge of over-incarceration of our black and brown communities. This Congress, we've worked closely on the Next Step Act, which would tackle sentencing reform and re-entry programs.
In 2019, Nevada significantly expanded voting rights and access to voting locations. What additional measures, if any, are needed to improve the efficiency, accessibility, and integrity of elections?
I'm a proponent of expanding voting rights and civic participation. I was an original co-sponsor of the For The People Act, HR-01, this Congress to strengthen our democracy by getting big money out of politics, expanding voting rights, election security funds, and other critical measures that are needed to keep a vibrant democracy.
What is your position on universal background checks for firearm sales and other policies to address gun violence in this country?
I’m a strong advocate for gun safety legislation and am proud that we took sweeping actions this Congress to make our communities safer. I’m proud to have been a co-sponsor of important measures like the Bipartisan Background Checks Act of 2019, and have been endorsed by other advocacy organizations such as the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the Giffords Organization. I’ve also met with your members and have attended and been active in the Moms Demand Action movement here in NV. I’d be proud to have your support as we work toward a more safe and gun-free world.
Do you support the legalization and regulation of marijuana?