Over the past three years, as I’ve traveled this district, I hear about the same issues, whether I’m in Auburn, Tully, Palmyra or Oswego. People just want to be able to afford to pay their rent or mortgage, put food on the table, go to the doctor without worrying about the cost, and have a little money left over at the end of the month.

I feel the same way — because I remember what it was like to live paycheck to paycheck and hoping I’d make my rent that month. I know what it’s like to navigate our broken healthcare system and nearly go bankrupt because of medical bills. I’ve struggled to find health insurance because of my preexisting condition. I’m still paying off my student loans.

This is why my campaign for Congress has been centered on three main goals: guaranteeing quality, affordable healthcare for every person; building a fair economy that works for everyone; and getting big money out of politics.

On healthcare, I want to give everyone access to Medicare. We can start by lowering the age of Medicare eligibility from 65 to 55, enrolling children in Medicare at birth, and offering a public buy-in so anyone of any age who wants to get their insurance through Medicare can. My opponent, Congressman John Katko, voted with Donald Trump to sabotage the Affordable Care Act , a move that now threatens protections for the more than 300,000 people in our district who live with preexisting conditions.

I want to build an economy that works for working families, not just corporations and CEOs. This means raising the minimum wage to $15/hour indexed to inflation, implementing a fair tax policy that works for everyday Americans, and ensuring people have access to debt-free educational and vocational opportunities. Congressman John Katko, on the other hand, voted for Donald Trump’s 2017 tax scam, which gave corporations a $233 billion tax windfall and put Social Security and Medicare on the chopping block.

One of the most effective ways we can bring about change is by getting big money out of politics so that everyday people — not special interests — make the rules. This is why I have never and will never accept corporate PAC money. Congressman John Katko has failed us in this regard by accepting millions of dollars in campaign contributions from corporate PACs including the gun lobby and pharmaceutical, insurance, oil, gas, and financial industries.

In order to make true change, we have to first change our leadership. Congressman Katko has demonstrated time and time again that he doesn’t have our best interests at heart. A prime example: After saying in 2016 that Trump would “never earn his vote,” Katko completely reversed course and endorsed Trump in January. Today, despite a pandemic in which over 215,000 Americans have died and the biggest economic recession since the Great Depression, Katko is still actively supporting Trump for reelection.

Thanks in large part to Trump, our country is now more divided than ever. In order to move past this division, we’ve got to get to the root of what we all have in common. This is why, during my campaign, I’ve talked about values instead of party. I’ve spoken about how to achieve the goals we all share, like affordable healthcare. And I’ve focused on policies that will give every central and western New Yorker a fair shot at success.

As your Congresswoman, I will bring that same perspective and approach to Washington D.C, and I will work closely with Joe Biden on policies that help — not hurt — everyday people. Together, we can bring America back.

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