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Candius
Stearns

On the Issues

Healthcare

Healthcare

When I started selling BCBSM insurance 20 years ago to individuals and small businesses, the cost for health insurance benefits was $130 a month for a single person, and $375 for a family of four. Now, thanks to ACA, a 56-year-old single person costs $675 per month. It’s outrageous. There’s several reasons insurance has gone up, but the ACA only addressed insurance issues instead of tackling the three big healthcare concerns. These concerns, and what I am concerned with fixing, are access to care, quality of care, and cost of care. ACA doesn’t help our families, and as someone who is experienced in healthcare, I’m willing to put in the effort ACA didn’t in order to actually help our families.

Education

Education

Our current academia higher level education system pressures students into a one-size-fits-all path that simply doesn’t fit everyone. Michigan is the car manufacturing capital of America, but as our skilled tradesmen retire, we don’t have enough employees who have the skills to replace them. I’m a strong proponent of education apprenticeship and technical trade programs. There’s this stigma that you are less if you work with your hands. I want to change that. Tradesmen and women are the backbone of our society, and it’s time we give our skilled workers the credit they deserve while also filling the employment gaps in our technical fields.

Economy

Economy

Let’s face it head on and honestly: our economy is overburdened by taxes and regulations. Our tax code is too complicated. Just like our families, businesses struggle when it comes to filing taxes. Small businesses are hurt most of all. ACA insurance mandates in 2014 raised the employer healthcare premium by 60-110%. Healthcare premiums in Michigan costs more than most employees rent or mortgage dollars per month. Small business pay the lion’s share of the employees rate because they know their employees can’t afford it without their contributions. Healthcare costs are the 2nd largest expense outside of payroll and costs approximately $10 an hour to provide to our citizens. We need to provide relief to our small business owners and our middle-class income families.

Employee benefits cost employers $10.70 per hour in March 2016
~ Bureau of Labor

Government Spending

Government Spending

I’m ready to change Washington’s spending addiction. We pay taxes with hard-earned, much-needed dollars, and we barely see anything come from it. We keep getting less from Washington, even as they ask for more and raise taxes that don’t need to be raised. It’s been 30 years since a fresh voice was in Washington, speaking up for our rights. I’m ready to change the status quo: put taxpayers first, protect and keep what we have worked so hard to earn.

Immigration Reform

Immigration Reform

We’re under attack. Every day we see it on the news: terrorists doing what they can to attack freedom and the innocent who dare live freely. Defending our nation from those who would harm us starts with securing our borders. Instead of being politically correct and afraid, we should do the right thing and rise above. We need to enforce our existing immigration laws, support our hard-working law enforcement, intelligence, and immigration agencies in preventing and stopping terrorists. Protection starts from home.

Issues 2nd Amendment

Issues 2nd Amendment

Growing up on a farm, my family always had firearms on our property.  My family and neighbors take gun safety and the responsibility of owning guns seriously. I am Pro-2nd Amendment, and believe American citizens are guaranteed the individual right to bear arms. As a gun owner still, I support the rights to self-defense, sporting, conservation/hunting, as well as collecting of weapons.

Environment

Environment

As daughter of a dairy farmer, I grew up a conservationist, and protector of our land and water. I support a clean and safe environment for all of us. Quality clean water is one of the most important gifts we can pass on to our children and future generations.

 

Laws must protect our land, water, and air quality. However, some of these environmental rules and regulations are complex mazes that stifle the economic growth of our nation. For this reason, I favor reviewing legislation to ensure common sense free market approaches can both protect the environment and spur economic growth with job creation. We don’t have to choose one or the other option.

 

As a hunter/fisherman, it is important that we maintain our environment. Quality clean water is one of the most important gifts we can pass on to our children and future generations.

Taxes

Taxes

In the United States every year, Americans spend hundreds of billions of dollars on consultants, tax lawyers, accountants and other costs associated with tax compliance. Our tax code is full of loopholes due to the length and complexity of the code.  Instead of growing Government and increasing our current $21,456,000,000,000 dollar debt, which is climbing, we need to simplify our tax code, reduce Government spending and focus on growing the economy.

President Reagan said it best when he said, “You can't be for Big Regulations, Big Taxes and Big Government, and still be for the Little Guy!”

My belief is we do not have a national income problem. I believe we have a national spending problem. In Washington D.C., I will represent Michiganders and stand up for individual freedom and economic growth.

Transportation

Transportation

I support cost-effective ways to improve our nation’s infrastructure. We must work on redeveloping our infrastructure without raising the federal gas tax or increasing our debt. The Federal Government’s proper utilization of our tax dollars is to help our state provide a safe, modern and efficient transportation system. This is critical in helping our state improve the quality of life of our citizens and strengthen our economy.

Veterans

Veterans

As a small business health insurance agent with over 30 years of serving, individuals who have served honorably with the armed services, I support the Veteran Accountability Act. Our veterans have served selflessly for our freedom and they deserve access, quality and low cost medical care. These men and women should not feel forced to buy additional coverage due to access of care in the VA health system benefit program.

I supported acts, such as The Choice Act, signed into law on August 7, 2014. The Choice Act provided $17 billion to improve veterans’ access to healthcare at the Department of Veterans Affairs, including a provision to expand veterans access to care and treatment outside of the VA health system.

Candius Stearns

Leading Michigan Forward