Your Name: Ann Heitkemper
Name of Office: Olympia School Board Director District 4
Congressional District: Thurston Co -Olympia School District
Legislative District: Thurston Co -Olympia School District
Status: New Candidate
Date of Election (mm/dd/yy): 11/07/17
Candidate Website: aheitkemper.com
Candidate Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AnnHeitkemperForSchools/
Candidate Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Do You: Believe in the need for Campaign Finance Reform/not support Super PACs/Citizen’s United?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: I do believe that Citizens United should be overturned. It has allowed individuals to buy elections (e.g.Koch brothers). I would ideally like to see funding of campaigns financed by taxpayers with NO outside dollars. This would level the playing field and ideas, not dollars would be the deciding factor in all elections.
Do You: Believe in Medicare/Medicaid/single-payer for all?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: I have attended several rallies in WA to support single payer for all reforms. We all need health care regardless of income, social status and total wealth. We are all in this life together and interdependent upon each other. What is good for one is good for all. People should not have to choose between health care and a home, or health care and eating, etc. When I lived in Cleveland our daughter was one and a half years old. My husband worked at Case Western Reserve Medical School on an NIH research scholarship and I was looking for employment. We could not afford insurance. We had to decide if the cold our daughter had needed medical attention or would it be a \”waste of money\” to take her in. This should not happen to anyone. Other people do not and did not have the option of paying cash or going in debt with potentially dire consequences. I could share more but this will suffice.
Do You: Believe in LGBTQ marriage equality/equal rights?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate: I have attended many rallies in support of my friends and family who are LGBTQ. The data is clear that LGBTQ people are born as LGBTQ and deserve to be happy, like anyone of us. LGBTQ is normal behavior. Every individual has the right to \”life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness\” which includes LGBTQ.
Do You: Believe in tax-paid public accredited college access for all who are accepted and free tuition at all public colleges?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: I am an educator and Professor of Microbiology at South Puget Sound Community College. I have had students who were homeless and attending my class at SPSCC. These individuals had to choose between paying rent and taking a class with the hope of crawling out of poverty and becoming a nurse. This choice is absurd, yet some people are forced to make it. I attended college on a Pell grant. I would not have been able to go to college without this public assistance. My husband enrolled in the USMC to earn the G.I. Bill allowing him to go to college. He chose to potentially put his life on the line to earn funding for college. For these reasons and more education should be free to all.
Do You: Support college loan repayment relief and college loan monthly payments no more than 10% of net income?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: Some college graduates are $50,000 or more in debt from public institutions. In some parts of the country their debt is equivalent to a house payment which precludes these individuals from purchasing a home. Huge debt disproportionately hurts poor people. Students may not get out from school debt for decades. This not only hurts the student but hurts the entire nation as they cannot contribute robustly to the economy. Currently for selected students who have debt due to their educational expenses (e.g. Nursing, Dental, PA and medical schools) repayment programs exist. These systems are great blueprints for such repayment.
Do You: Believe in closing corporate tax loopholes?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: It is only fair. It helps the nations economy.
Do You: Believe in a $15 Minimum Wage (graduated in, over 4 years, at a maximum)?:Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: It should be implemented as soon as possible. If calculated on a 52 week basis this would come to $31,200 dollars/year before taxes. A moderate tax rate of 25% would reduce this income to $23,400. If rent and utilities are set at a conservative $1000/month their salary is reduced to $11,400. This $11,400 must then cover food, soap, laundry, medical, and the rest. The $15 minimum wage may be too low.
Do You: Prioritize repairing infrastructure?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: Our infrastructure nationally needs extensive repairs. For example our bridges are in disrepair which jeopardizes anyone who travels over bridges. This is just bridges. Further repairing our infrastructure will put people to work and improve the lives of all of our citizens in the entire country.
Do You: Believe in Police/Prison Reform (end private prisons, drug treatment vs. prison, possible Body Cams, demilitarize/retrain police, etc.)?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: Private prison\’s have been a disaster. Prison\’s are meant to rehabilitate our citizen\’s who have gone astray so that they can reenter society as productive citizens. Private prisons are paid by our tax dollars based on how many people are kept in prison. It is counter to their profit margins to rehabilitate prisoners and release them in a timely fashion. Drug addicts need treatment, not prison time. If drug addicts are successfully treated for their condition they can become productive members of our society. Training/demilitarization of the police is a must. Police need to know how to deescalate a situation and not macho it up. Training could help. Also walking a beat as was done in the 50\’ and 60\’ allows police to know the community which helps to calm situations.
Do You: Believe in finding a way to reduce the power of the military industrial complex and constant state of conflict/war?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please be specific.: People dying for oil or other resources is not justifiable. Halliburton made billions on the backs of poor Americans. If we arm both sides in a conflict, the conflict escalates. People die and the \”Halliburton\’s\” of the world get rich. It is just wrong.
Do You: Support common sense gun control/improved background checks (ban on assault weapons, like Bernie)?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please be specific.: I may go even further than Bernie and restrict weapons more.
Do You: Support a woman’s right to choose and will try to prevent local legislation that inhibits access to care at Planned Parenthood or any other clinic providing women’s care in this area?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: My favorite charity is PP. PP supplies basic health care for more than just women. For example many people would not get mammograms without access to PP. PP can help women to effectively plan a pregnancy making all (a hope) pregnancies wanted pregnancies. I have attended many protests in support of a woman\’s right to choose. Unwanted pregnancies can alter a woman\’s life in many ways. Unwanted pregnancies disproportionately affect the poor and people of color. There are major differences between a conceptus, embryo, and fetus; they are not babies. Therapeutic abortions must remain SAFE and legal.
Do You: Believe in climate change and working towards renewable energy sources?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: I am a scientist. All scientists believe in science and global climate change. There is no denying the facts. What we do about global climate change is perhaps the most pressing question of the day. We may be able to help (not reverse) ameliorate climate change by taking immediate action. Coal is never clean. We have only limited fossil fuels and they will run out before the end of the century. Renewable resources are renewable (duh). Not only will this be better for all life on our planet, but developing the technology for renewable resources will provide jobs. Renewable resources are the only technology that can save our planet.
Do You: Believe in separation of church and state?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: Most definitively. Politicians who emphasize their church and the activities of their church are breaking one of the founding tenets of our country. I believe that freedom of religion is important but do not try to interject your religion on others.
Do You: Believe in a path to citizenship?: Yes
Why or Why Not? Please Elaborate.: Many immigrants have been good \”illegal\” citizens in our country. They work, pay taxes, participate in school activities, etc. Many have children who are US citizens. Many came to the USA as children and are Americans in all aspects of the word except they are not \”legal\” citizens. It is only fair that we give such people a pathway to what they essentially are already.
Did you support Bernie in the 2016 Primary?: Yes
Do you support and believe in whistleblowers like Eric Snowden and Julian Assange?: Yes
If Not, Why?: Whistle blowers need protection. I do not claim to know all the details of either Eric Snowden or Julian Assange. I do however support their ability to call attention to things that are not right. Whistle blowers in general have paid steep prices for voicing their concerns. We need avenues and protection for people who are looking out for us all.
Do you respect 3rd parties as an alternative to get corporate ownership out of politics? Or should you “vote blue no matter who?”: With corporate money supplying funds to both Blue and Red parties, our interests (non-rich people) are being subjugated. I think our country would benefit with more viable parties. Our founding fathers warned of the numerous problems of a two-party system. I agree with our founding fathers.
Other Comments.: I was a sate delegate for Bernie Sanders in the 2016 WA elections representing LD22. I have been a progressive for my entire life. Before I could vote I door-belled for George McGovern. I look forward to your endorsement.