Col. Rogers on the Issues
Border Security and Immigration: A National and Economic Security Issue
America’s immigration system is broken. Like the majority of Americans, I support LEGAL immigration as much as I oppose ILLEGAL immigration. Unfortunately, the career politicians and special interests in Washington are playing political games with both—and for decades, nothing meaningful has gotten done. Both legal and illegal immigration must be fixed.
America is a beacon of freedom and opportunity around the world, and must remain so. We should be a nation where law-abiding people can come to chase the American dream, without waiting a decade or more. But we must be able to control our borders in order to preserve our sovereignty, protect our communities, and defend our nation from those who would do us harm.
The Second Amendment: Protecting Fundamental Rights
The founding fathers were very clear in their intent when they wrote the Second Amendment to the Constitution: the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. They believed that each law-abiding American citizen had the right to own and maintain firearms in order to defend themselves and their families from those who would do them harm.
As a retired member of the United States Air Force and as a current Concealed Carry Weapons (CCW) permit holder, I take our fundamental rights very seriously. As your representative in Congress, you can depend on me to always fight to uphold your right to bear arms.
Life, Values, & Religious Liberty
Like America’s founders, who recognized the right to life as a fundamental human freedom, I believe that every human life is worthy of respect and protection. In Congress, I will stand up for the sanctity of human life and fight to stop tax dollars from going to organizations that perform abortions.
I believe that the institution of marriage in its traditional definition of one man and one woman is one of the institutions that has kept the fabric of American society strong. I am committed to preserving traditional marriage, and to defending the conscience rights of individuals, religious institutions, and private organizations as enshrined in the First Amendment in the U.S. Constitution.
Jobs and Economic Growth
I believe we can reduce the tax and regulatory burden on families and job providers as an important first step toward jump-starting our nation’s economy. Government doesn’t create jobs, but government can prevent jobs from being created. Big government has over-taxed and over-regulated our economy to such an extent that employment opportunities have largely been replaced with welfare realities. This isn’t the future we wanted for our children and grandchildren, and it’s time we turned things around.
So let’s get Congress and the federal government out of the way of real job growth. Let’s get politicians and special interests out of the way of real employment gains. If Washington wasn’t so worried about who was going to take credit for success, America’s economy would likely be moving more quickly than it is today.
Small businesses account for a large majority of America’s job base. The more government grows, the more it pushes small business out of the way. Only by balancing the budget, reducing the tax and regulatory burden on businesses, incentivizing innovation and capital reinvestment, and getting government bureaucrats out of America’s boardrooms will we be able to return our nation to the economic powerhouse we once were.
Healthcare: Repeal, Replace, Replenish
The simple fact is that Obamacare increases health care premiums on Arizona families, the exact opposite of its intended goal. It raises taxes on employers, which will ultimately cost Arizona jobs. And it included more than $700 billion in cuts to Medicare, which will deliver added woes to Arizona seniors already struggling to balance limited incomes with increasing medical costs.
In addition, Obamacare will likely cripple our existing health care system. These huge cuts to Medicaid are causing more doctors and more hospitals to limit or stop taking Medicaid patients altogether. Despite this, the president wants to force millions of Americans to enroll in Medicaid.
In Congress, I will work to repeal and defund Obamacare, and will join my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to replace it with a common-sense alternative that increases access, reduces costs for all Americans, protects seniors, incentivizes innovation and the reduction of fraud and waste, and makes our nation’s health system more efficient.
The American people deserve a health care system that promotes actual health, not one that places the IRS in charge of health policy mandates. For our seniors, children, and all Arizona families, we have a moral obligation to rise to this challenge.
National Security: Five Generations of Leadership
America’s security is under constant threat. I believe we have a responsibility to maintain America’s military preparedness against all foreseeable threats. An aggressive China, a resurgent Russia, the proliferation of nuclear weapons from the former Soviet Union, rogue nations from the Middle East to the Korean Peninsula, and the rise of ISIS and other radical Islamic terrorists intent on killing innocent victims around the world are just a few of the potential security threats we must be ready to address without warning.
The brave soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines, and national guardsmen who protect our nation at home and abroad, each and every day, deserve our support – and they deserve better than they’ve received in recent years. Servicemen and women sent into harm’s way should be the best trained in the world, and the best equipped. When they return home from service, our veterans should in be served by a swift and efficient Department of Veterans Affairs. Today, however, our VA is backlogged with years of claims sitting unprocessed. The men and women who fought for our nation are treated with neglect by an inefficient bureaucracy, and this must end. As a 5th generation military officer, I am committed to preserving America’s armed forces, and protecting our national security from all threats.
Education: Reading, Writing, and Rebuilding From the Ground Up
There is no more important issue facing America today than the strength of our nation’s schools and the quality of the education our children are receiving. President Reagan said, “As a nation, we are dedicated to excellence in education. It makes a better life for our children as individuals, and it further secures the liberty we cherish.”
In Congress, my goal is to empower states, cities, school districts, and schools with the tools necessary to recapture education in America. All American citizens, be they children or adults, must be equipped to succeed in an increasingly global marketplace. Congress shouldn’t be dictating education policy, but we can be instrumental in making sure our school districts, teachers, and parents have the resources they need to give our students the education they will need to succeed in life.
I have long believed that parents, teachers and local school districts are the best ones to meet the educational needs of their students, if only we let them do their jobs. But for decades, Congress has failed students miserably. The federal government has set up a multi-billion dollar bureaucracy for schools and school districts to navigate, robbing billions and billions of dollars from the classroom, out of the hands of teachers, and as far away from students as possible.
The result of Congress’s failure in education policy has been declining test scores, fewer teachers entering the profession, bigger class sizes, a crumbling education infrastructure, and American students falling behind many of their counterparts around the world. We cannot continue to throw money at a broken system hoping a few extra dollars will change the results of policies that have never worked and never will. In Congress, I will work with my colleagues from around the nation to involve educators and parents in crafting real solutions to fix America’s schools.
IRS: Taking Axes to Taxes
Each year, American families, individuals, and businesses spend over $330 billion just to comply with the federal tax code. For lawyers and accountants, not to mention the IRS, this is probably good business. But that’s one-third of a trillion dollars which citizens and businesses could be spending elsewhere – on research and development of new products and industries, on new technologies, on research grants and scholarships, just to name a few.
Additionally, the Obama/IRS scandal, which only seems to be growing increasingly broader and more out of control—leads me to echo the calls by a growing number of Democrats, independents, and Republicans who believe we have reached a point of no return. It’s time for the Tax Code and the IRS to go! In its place, I believe we need tax reform.
My principles on this are very simple. I am willing to discuss any tax structure that, 1. Simplifies the tax system. 2. Helps create economic growth and jobs. 3. Does not favor one class of Americans over another.
However, let me be clear. I would not support a tax increase of any kind on anyone. I am not for simply trading in one tax for another. We need real reform that reduces the amount of tax that Americans pay to the federal government.
By eliminating today’s tax code, eliminating the IRS, and replacing our current system with one that puts all Americans on an even footing, we immediately end one of the most draconian federal agencies in history – and one which recently has proven it can be used for nefarious purposes-to harass and punish innocent American citizens.
Energy Independence: Jobs, Environment, Security
America has great energy resources, but politics and radical special interests are preventing us from utilizing them. Meanwhile, we languish as importers are reliant upon the whims of terrorist despots and Middle East sheikhs who use their oil and gas supplies to dictate international politics.
Each year, America imports more than $400 billion in energy. We are stuck in a cycle of borrowing money from China to buy oil from Saudi Arabia and elsewhere. Wouldn’t it be better to spend those dollars here at home?
In Congress, I will support policies like the Keystone XL Pipeline and other projects with bipartisan support which would create jobs and reduce America’s devastating and costly reliance on foreign oil. In the case of the Keystone project, as many as 100,000 American jobs could be created, but still the Obama administration rejects the proposal.
The reality is, we can be doing much more to increase domestic energy production, while safeguarding our environment, and increasing our own national and economic security. In Congress I will support the siting of new domestic oil refineries, investment into the latest advances in nuclear energy, and proper investment into solar and wind power (without the money laundering through Obama campaign contributors we saw with Solyndra and the president).
Social Security: Keeping Promises, Not Playing Politics
We need to act now to preserve and strengthen Social Security. Congress has refused to act because it would require tough political choices. However, we all want the same thing: we want Social Security to be there when we need it. This will require an American solution, not a partisan one. I would work with my colleagues to come up with a solution to keep Social Security financially stable for the future.