Guest Commentary: Scott Costello in the NWI Times
As featured in the NWI Times:
To the wonderful people of Indiana’s 1st Congressional District, I hold the distinct honor of campaigning to be your representative in the United States Congress. Thank you for taking time to read about my platform. If you have any questions, concerns or ideas please reach out to me over e-mail or phone after reading this. My website is www.scottcostello.org, where you can learn more about me and my platform, why you should vote for me, sign up to volunteer or make a small donation.
Like when Pete Visclosky ran in 1984, this is my first candidacy for public office. My campaign is a mission to see the re-industrialization of America, starting right here in the heart of steel country, Northwest Indiana, home of the once-largest steel mill in the world, Gary Works. I am campaigning to protect and expand our unions, protect and expand our Social Security pension fund, protect and expand Medicare to all Americans, protect and expand public education to keep up with automation, alleviate America’s extreme wealth inequality, and fully address the climate crisis which threatens our entire world today.
HEALTH CARE: Implement Medicare for All. Currently Americans pay 1.45% for Medicare deducted from payroll taxes. This would increase a small amount for most Americans, and it would increase based on income; corporations would match. Medicare for All will save Americans $450 billion per year and cover mental health and substance abuse treatment. No deductibles, no co-pays, no co-insurance, no balance billing — no bills! Free choice for any doctor or hospital. No pre-existing conditions.
TAXES: Eliminate the self-employment tax and increase Social Security tax cap. Veterans should pay no federal tax and deduct State and sales taxes. Increase corporate tax rate to pre-2016 level. Increase and expand the EITC until minimum wage is at $15 per hour. Increase income tax rate on super-rich to 1980 level for 10 years, then lower back down to 1999 levels. Institute a wealth tax on billionaires. Reinstate inheritance tax for billionaire families. Repatriate and tax profits held in offshore accounts and increase capital gains tax to 35% on profits reinvested in stock buybacks. Repeal the TCJA.
PUBLIC EDUCATION: Increase teacher base pay by 30-50%. Provide public Education through Master’s degree and include trades in order to prepare for extreme increase in automation. Our children need more education in order to step foot into the workforce, this is happening now! End the charter school experiment which has failed. End wasteful and time-consuming testing and focus on teaching. Teachers have the right to form unions and engage in collective bargaining. A strong economy with good jobs for all Americans is the best solution to many classroom problems.
IMMIGRATION: Eliminate fees to apply for citizenship. Save taxpayers money and honor America’s commitment to immigrants and the humane treatment of all people by discontinuing ICE. Immediately close detention centers and re-unite children with their moms and dads. Reinstate DACA, pass the DREAM Act and Dignity for Detained Immigrants Act. Repeal President Clinton’s immigration laws and replace with amnesty laws that keep families together and protect human rights.
RE-INDUSTRIALIZATION & THE CLIMATE CRISIS: Invest in America by building high-speed rail systems, produce millions of electric vehicles and charging systems of all types, produce innovative aircraft of all types, and computer and electronics industries. Subsidize clean energy storage innovations, and fund ARPA-E. Develop technologies to remove carbon and methane from the air. We need to produce massive amounts of permanent, decent, affordable housing of all types and locations. We need infrastructure improvements. Rural emergency rooms. Community hospital and nursing home modernization. We need to transfer coal, oil and natural gas subsidies to green tech that we can produce here in America. We need to support farmers and provide secure markets for their products.
UNIONS: Repeal Right to Work laws. Confront and end China’s currency manipulation. Continue unilateral action if necessary, to prevent dumping. Require “buy American” provisions in government projects. Strengthen the NLRB. Keep OSHA strong and protect people from dangerous chemicals.
WOMEN’S RIGHTS: Pass the ERA and Paycheck Fairness Act. Increase funding for Planned Parenthood and include affordable contraception and keep abortion safe and legal. Repeal the Hyde Amendment. Adequately fund WIC. Pass laws that combat sexual harassment, sexual assault, and sexual abuse and increase funding for combat sex trade. I support protections and equality for the LGBT community.