Marie Newman: 2022 candidate for U.S. House 6th District
Office sought: U.S. House 6th District
City: La Grange
Occupation: U.S. Representative
Previous offices held: U.S. Representative (IL03) from 2021 to present
What needs to be done to get Congress to work constructively, whether that be senators and representatives of both parties working with each other or Congress itself working with the president?
We have passed some truly transformative legislation this session that will build an economy capable of taking us into the future. But we can't overlook major obstacles to getting things done.
We need to strip corporate money out of politics. Certain colleagues of mine will refuse to support popular and transformative legislation because it hurts the corporations that bankroll their campaigns. I do not and never will accept corporate contributions to my campaign because I want to be accountable to one group and one group alone -- my constituents.
We can't let political disagreement devolve into demonization. I've worked across the aisle on legislation to expand access to capital so small businesses can open and thrive in our communities and to secure funding for major public transit agencies to mitigate accessibility gaps and plan for an inclusive future. Together with Republicans, I also introduced legislation to boost opportunities for women- and minority-owned small businesses.
What is your position on changing voter access?
Voting rights have been under renewed attack since the Supreme Court struck down protections guaranteed by the 1965 Voting Rights Act. We have seen the results of these attacks bear out in recent elections, as state legislatures across the country have actively made it more challenging for Americans to vote. Step one is restoring those protections established by the VRA by passing the John Lewis Voting Rights Act, a bill which I was proud to co-sponsor, and which now sits on Mitch McConnell's desk. I was also proud to vote for H.R. 1 the For the People Act which, when passed into law, will establish automatic voter registration nationwide and will require same day registration and mail in voting for all federal elections. The right to vote is foundational to our democracy, and we need to protect that right at all costs.
Do you recognize that the election of Joe Biden as president in 2020 was legitimate and fair? If not, why?
What, if anything, should Congress do to prevent another violent attack such as the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the Capitol?
See my thoughts on voter access above, I think we need to start by protecting the right to vote, expanding access to voting and securing our and protecting the integrity of our elections. Equally as critical, I think we need to hold traditional and social media companies accountable for willfully hosting and spreading misinformation. We are more connected now as a country than we ever have been, which means that misinformation can be used more effectively now than ever before to mobilize large groups of people. We need to protect the free flow of information, but to ensure that that flow is not being tampered with or redirected by bad actors.
What do you consider America's role in world affairs? In particular, what should our role be regarding current points of tension involving Russia/Ukraine, the future of Taiwan or other threats of Chinese expansionism and the Middle East?
My views are based on the humanitarian rights for all people and the promotion of peace and justice for all. Our legislators have a moral and a constitutional responsibility to enact policies that align with our democratic values both domestically and abroad. I believe all human beings at the core want the same thing. We all want to have the same access to education and health care, and opportunities to reach our full potential as human beings. Our world is interconnected -- human rights violations and injustices anywhere will have a direct effect on us here at home. I believe it is our moral responsibility to provide humanitarian aid to Ukraine, to welcome Ukrainians that are displaced by this conflict, and to continue to work with our international allies to broker peace in the region. Similarly, I believe it is our responsibility to work with the international community to protect and advance human rights, de-escalate conflict, and to prevent human rights abuses.
Do you acknowledge humans' role in causing climate change? What steps should government be taking to address the issue?
One of the greatest threats to us is the climate crisis. If we want to leave a habitable world, we need to act now to roll back the damage we've done to our planet.
Fighting climate change and growing our economy are not mutually exclusive. Combatting the climate crisis is an opportunity for us to create millions of good paying union jobs. Our only path to net-zero emissions and solving the climate crisis is through the creation of a green economy.
One of my first actions in Congress was to introduce the America's Clean Future Fund Act to create new, good-paying jobs by investing in clean energy and a green economy, and ultimately help us reach the goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. We need to do all that we possibly can to address climate change, from punishing polluters to market based solutions to encouraging new green businesses and green jobs through legislation while simultaneously building a just migration away from fossil fuels.
Please define your position on health care reform, especially as it relates to the Affordable Care Act.
The Affordable Care Act moved us in the right direction, securing health coverage for millions of families. The ACA brought insurance to over 20,000 people in my district who were previously living without health insurance. I am committed to defending that legislation from any attempts to undermine it and will support any legislation meant to bolster it.
Despite progress made through the ACA, the COVID-19 pandemic made clear just how ill-suited our system is to actually keep us healthy. We must adopt a single payer, universal system of care that reduces costs for everyone. Medicare for All will save money, an estimated $300 billion a year in administrative costs alone, will increase the quality of care, will expand access to everyone, and will give Americans the financial security, freedom from ever increasing co-pays, deductibles and out of pocket expenses, and the quality healthcare they need to rebuild after the worst health and financial crisis of our modern era.
What immigration policies do you support? Where, if at all, do you see room for compromise to produce an effective policy on immigration? Does the government have any responsibility toward Dreamers who were brought to the United States illegally as children and are now adults? How will these policies affect your district?
Yes, the government does have a responsibility to Dreamers. I was a proud original co-sponsor of the American Dream and Promise Act, which passed the House earlier this year, and would provide protection from deportation and a pathway to citizenship for nearly 1 million Dreamers living in this country. In Congress I will continue to fight for protections for Dreamers and TPS holders and to establish a pathway to citizenship that is clear and expedient. Our nation was built by immigrants who emigrated here for a shot at a better life and the chance to pursue the American Dream. We need to honor that legacy, ensuring that America continues to be a destination for those seeking a fresh start, and establishing a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who have been, and will continue to be, crucial in pushing this nation forward.