I am running for office because I’m concerned about the state of affairs at the national level and how decisions in DC affect Coloradans and the country.

Among My Concerns Are:

As a veterinarian, I come from a scientific field. I collect as much information as I can about an issue and then carefully consider all outcomes. With this approach, I will make well-informed choices and guide policy decisions that would best benefit our citizens.

My moral compass is partly guided by a principle in medicine – above all do no harm. Reason and compassion help to guide my decision making.

I welcome support from all Americans, regardless of political affiliation. I pledge to work together with all parties to achieve goals for the good of the country.

Health Care

Affordable and accessible healthcare is a key component to a thriving economy and a top rate educational system. Other industrialized nations have shown it is possible to have high quality, affordable and fair systems. What they can do, we should be able to do at least as well. We must continue to refine our system until it is working fairly and is sustainable. But the real goal is not access to health care, but good health. Such an approach requires an enhanced emphasis on promoting proper nutrition and preventive services. I would work hard to ensure Coloradans are not burdened by health care costs for their employees or for themselves. We need to simplify the system and continue moving forward together to solve the issues surrounding health care. Having millions without health care is expensive and inefficient for every single American. We can put our heads together to save lives and taxpayer’s hard earned money.

Gun Safety

Karen comes from a family of gun owners and knows that when we put partisan bickering aside, a vast majority of Americans support common sense legislation to keep guns out of the hands of those who pose a threat to our kids and families. It is critical to implement federally mandated universal background checks for all gun sales to keep guns out of the hands of convicted criminals and gun traffickers. The presence of a gun dangerously compounds the risk of impulsive acts of violence like spousal abuse or suicide, which is why it is important to implement waiting periods, or “cooling off” laws, which have been proven to decrease gun related violence by creating an important window of time for gun purchasers to reconsider their intentions which can lead to a change of heart and a life saved. Solutions like these can help to curtail the epidemic levels of gun violence that our country faces without compromising the Second Amendment.

Energy, Environment, and Economy

Our economy is in an exciting time of transition as there are multiple sources of energy at our disposal and emerging technology that will make our energy more affordable, cleaner, and will guarantee America’s energy independence. While our economy and infrastructure still depend on carbon fuels, we should continue to work to make sure oil, gas and coal retrieval is done intelligently and safely. As renewal energy sources continue to become more cost effective we are seeing a growing economy with jobs and income for those involved, especially here on Colorado’s eastern plains. Our communities can look to these technologies to harvest the great resources of solar and wind in the 4th Congressional District. Colorado can be a leader for the rest of the country in how development of these energy sources can stimulate and stabilize the economy, create good-paying jobs and leave a healthier environment for generations of Coloradans to follow.

Education

We need to insure that all Coloradans and all Americans get the education needed to fulfill each individual’s potential and have a shared understanding of the American experience.  It is in all of our interests to have the best schools and most highly educated students.  If we put our effort toward supporting great schools, no matter the location, and put more value on the teaching profession itself, then we can foster an educated populace. Public schools have been and should continue to be the bedrock of our Republic. Having a healthy and educated population is the best defense we can have. Education is the best anti-poverty program ever.  The more value we place in education the more jobs will be created, as an educated citizenry leads to jobs through innovation.

Agriculture

Our district has nearly 26,000 farms and ranches which produce over $6.4 billion of agricultural crops (corn, wheat, grain sorghum, millet, sugar beets and hay) and livestock (cattle and calves, hogs, dairy products and chicken eggs) annually. It is the top ranked congressional district in the state for agricultural products, the 11 th ranked U.S. Congressional District for total value of agricultural products sold, and the 5 th ranked U.S. Congressional District for value of livestock and poultry products sold. Managing risk is essential for farmers and ranchers who face unpredictable and uncontrollable threats from the weather, pests, disease and commodity markets. Farmers and ranchers need a combination of crop insurance and farm and conservation programs to manage this risk, provide a safety net for their annual crop and livestock production and improve their land. Agricultural trade is essential to farmers and ranchers and the American economy. With the world’s population expected to swell to nine billion by the year 2050, free and open trade is a priority for farmers and ranchers. Farmers and ranchers need the continued long-term investment of federal dollars into public agricultural research by USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and land-grant colleges such as Colorado State University for cutting-edge research to sustain a competitive agricultural economy, enhance the natural resource base and environment, and ensure high-quality and safe food. It also means protecting the water that our farmers and ranchers need to stay in business while sustaining population growth in Colorado which could double from 5 million today by 2060 to ensure a productive agriculture, a productive economy, vibrant and sustainable cities, a strong environment, and a robust recreation industry. In addition to producing food and fiber, Colorado farmers and ranchers are producers of renewable energy from wind, solar and biofuels which creates investments in rural Colorado from new jobs, lease payments to landowners and expansion of local and county tax bases.

Individual Rights and Civil Liberties

By right and tradition, our Constitution considers each of us an autonomous individual, not as a member of some labeled group. People are discriminated against often due to the group they identify with, or are placed into. We are all individuals, and should be treated and held responsible as such. Thus the rights and responsibilities we enjoy should be the same for each of us. All citizens should be treated equally under the law.

Our Military

Our military needs our gratitude and so much more. We need to realize they are our face to much of the world. We need to ensure they are properly utilized, equipped, and cared for. For far too long Congress had abdicated its proper Constitutional role in deciding when and where to engage in military force, allowing a President to deploy forces almost at will. We need to restore stronger Congressional oversight and own the responsibility of sending our men and women into harm’s way. When we go to battle, the entire Country should — not just a select few most of us never see.

International Relations

Our relations have been frayed with those nations who share our democratic and free market values. We need to restore and strengthen these ties, in our own best interests. We gain influence and power when we actually act in a manner that reflects the principles we embrace, whether it be in the fields of trade, human rights, or use of force. We are unique among nations in that we put principle ahead of simple short term self-interest, and have greatly benefited in the past from this uniqueness. This principled position is truly what makes America First among nations.

Infrastructure

Our infrastructure is on life support. Our shared roads, bridges, water and power systems need to be upgraded to 21st Century standards. Colorado’s broadband access should be of a high quality in every county in our state, because rural communities and businesses are being left behind without access to these critical services. We need to ensure that every Coloradan has reliable access to clean drinking water, and it is unacceptable for projects like the Arkansas Valley Conduit to have been delayed because of bureaucratic dysfunction. Rebuilding our infrastructure will create and maintain thousands of good-paying jobs throughout our state and the economic impact of stronger infrastructure will benefit everyone.

Government Reform

Democracies only work when all voices and votes count equally.  We need to press for accurate and complete voter rolls, and work for districting reform. The influx of big money in our elections threatens our very democracy. Too many politicians are bought and paid for by special interests, while the voices of everyday Americans are being drowned out. Karen will fight to end the rigged system that puts special interests above the voters. Karen will work to stop the unlimited special interest money in our elections and close loopholes that allow foreign interests to secretly influence our elections, to restore the voice of the voters and restore a government that is accountable to the public.

Taxes

Tax reform is universally recognized as a necessity. We need to ensure the burden is distributed fairly and more importantly that we get and recognize the value of government services rendered.