Saturday, November 01, 2014

Bill Hughes Letter To The Press

If you believe that the country is on the right track, that our elected officials in Washington are doing a great job for us, and that South Jersey is in good economic shape — then you probably don’t need to read any further.
On the other hand, if you agree with me that Washington is broken, and that the interests of working people and families are too often ignored by our elected officials, then I am asking for your vote on Election Day so we can do better.

South Jersey has the highest jobless rate in the state, averaging around 12.6 percent. Many have been unemployed so long that they’ve given up hope of finding work. Our economic problems didn’t come about overnight, and they’re not going to be solved overnight — but they will never be solved if we don’t have a congressman in Washington who will make economic revitalization his single highest priority and immediately act upon the warning signs when they appear. If I am chosen to be your representative, I pledge to do the following:
- Lead a bipartisan effort to rebrand and diversify South Jersey’s regional economy.
- Re-establish South Jersey and the Federal Aviation Administration Technical Center as the leader on all aviation research projects.
- Aggressively recruit new industry to South Jersey through tax and other incentives.
- Close federal tax loopholes that cause U.S. jobs to be exported overseas.
- Increase investment, tourism and trade opportunities by reaching out to international markets.
A member of Congress can be a very influential person, if he chooses to lead and use the full weight of his office to make change happen.
But if he does not show the energy, determination and vision to improve the lives of the working people in his district, or thinks that shutting down government is a way to get things done, then nothing will ever change.

Another area where I differ with the 20-year incumbent congressman is regarding the elderly and retired on Medicare and Social Security.
I would never have voted for the Ryan budget, which was passed in the House of Representatives on four separate occasions between 2011 and 2014.
This budget, among other things, would raise the age for Medicare eligibility to 67 and convert it to a voucher program, drastically cut spending on a number of health programs including the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and provide budget-busting tax cuts for the wealthy.
And if that is not bad enough, estimates are that had the Ryan budget been adopted, it would have cost New Jersey 100,000 to 150,000 jobs over a five-year period, mostly in the private sector, adding further to our economic woes.

If elected to Congress, I pledge to oppose every effort by Washington politicians to privatize Medicare or cut guaranteed Social Security benefits and to make sure that the Medicare Part D “Donut Hole” remains closed.
One of the biggest signs that Washington is broken is the extent to which waste, fraud and abuse still permeate government programs.
The federal government lost $261 billion, or 7 percent of total spending, to fraud and waste in 2012 alone. It’s a shame that we are looking at cutting important programs when there is so much waste.

As a former federal prosecutor who earned results fighting fraud and white-collar crime, I will crack down on wasteful government spending and save taxpayers money and demand a full audit of every federal department, including the Defense Department, which has never been audited.
My additional priorities include helping middle-class families cope with the exploding cost of college tuition, keeping our promise to our veterans and improving their access to health care, fixing the Affordable Care Act so it can live up to its original promise, and standing up against those who are slowing aid to families recovering from Superstorm Sandy.

I’m running for Congress to improve the quality of life for all South Jersey families. For too long, it’s been business as usual in Washington. As a former federal prosecutor and a father, husband and community volunteer, I’ve given back, taken criminals off the street and delivered a record of real results of standing up for New Jersey families. This is exactly what you deserve from Congress — results. Together, we can make Washington work for our families, instead of standing in the way of what our families need. I’d be honored to have your support.
William Hughes Jr., of Northfield, is the Democratic candidate for Congress in the 2nd Congressional District.

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