People should have free and unfettered access to the ballot.
The fourth Congressional District encompasses Durham, Chapel Hill, Apex, and Cary. Our district has historically stood for the principals of democracy and the right to vote. Without fair and equal access to the ballot there is no democracy. In Congress, Valentine will fight to protect the right to vote and to make election day a federal holiday. He will also support lowering the voting age to 16 and commit to a term limit of three elections cycles to ensure whole generations are not denied the opportunity to lead. He believes this is the way to return the power to the People!
People have a right to organize for higher wages, benefits, pensions, and a safe working environment.
North Carolina is a so called right to work state, but what that really means is you have no right to be treated with dignity and respect in exchange for the labor and hard work North Carolinians provide to the labor force each day. In Congress, Valentine will work on restoring the right for all workers to organize collectively. He understands the American middle class was built on the ability of workers to unionize around issues important to them.
People have a right to educational opportunities at every level.
All children should have access to free preschool. There is also work to be done to strengthen K-12 schools and to increase opportunities to attend community college for free. The fourth Congressional District is home to some of the nation’s leading institutions of higher learning: The University of North Carolina, Duke, North Carolina Central University and Durham Technical Community College to name a few. Our students should be able to transition to one these fine institutions of higher learning or to integrate into the labor force with adequate college, career, and technical skills. Also, he will work to eliminate student loan debt that is crippling future generations of North Carolinians.
People should demand that their government live up to the promises made to Veterans.
North Carolina is home to thousands of former military personnel and retirees. In Congress, Valentine will work across the aisle to ensure that Veterans are awarded the benefits they are promised. As a lifetime member of the Veterans of Foreign War and the American Legion he is committed to issues that impact on Veterans and their families.
People have a right to clean air and water.
The fourth district has maintained support for a core democratic commitment to ensuring environmental justice. In Congress, Valentine will make the environmental priorities of the Green New Deal a major framework for reversing the impact of global warming.
JOBS and INCOME
People have a right to a job that pays a living wage.
The Fourth Congressional District is home to the Research Triangle Park where companies like Apple, Google and Fujifilm have committed to bringing nearly 5,000 new jobs to the area. These jobs will go a long way in supporting the local economy with high-tech jobs that require specialized knowledge and skills. At the same time, we must bring jobs to North Carolina that will allow ordinary working-class people to have a job that pays a living wage along with the dignity that having a good paying job with benefits provides. We can’t afford to leave anyone behind in this economy.
People have a right to a tax system that requires everyone to pay their fair share.
For too long the middle-class and working-class people of North Carolina have had to pay more than their share of taxes, while corporations and wealthy individuals reap the benefits of a tax system that allows them to pay little to no taxes at all. We can do better. In Congress, Valentine will advocate for a tax structure that ensures taxation is a shared responsibility.
People should have an absolute right to healthcare.
At the heart of North Carolina’s fourth Congressional District is Durham, the city of medicine where health care remains a privilege rather than a right despite the implementation of the historic Affordable Care Act. The district is also home to the Durham VA Medical Center (DVAMC). In Congress, Valentine will work to ensure the DVAMC continues to be a provider of choice for area Veterans and to make universal health care a reality for all North Carolinians.
People should demand that Congress reclaim its power to determine when American Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines are sent to war.
America lost many men and women over the past twenty years in wars where Congress authorized the use of force without declaring a war. If American blood and treasure is going to be lost in combat in wars fought thousands of miles away from our shores it must be done in the national security interest of our nation authorized expressly by our Congress. In Congress, Valentine will ensure that sending our men and women into combat is an absolute last resort. His service in the military and his time at the U.S. State Department have provided him with experience that will inform his decision making in Congress.
People have a right to age with dignity.
The fourth district is home to nearly 120,000 beneficiaries of social security who are 65 years or older. In Congress Valentine will work tirelessly to ensure that social security insurance will be available for future generations because he understands that many of our elders escape poverty in their retirement years as a result.
People have a right to policies that prioritize people.
Progressive politics in the fourth district is unparalleled in the state of North Carolina. In Congress, Valentine will advocate for progressive legislation consistent with the needs of his constituency: criminal justice reform, systemic racism, affordable housing, immigration reform, and standing up for vulnerable populations. He will place prioritizing people first.
If you believe politics and policy should be informed by prioritizing people, I invite you to join my campaign so together we can give voice to the needs of the people!