As Colleen Hanabusa (D-HI) is quitting her House seat to challenge the sitting Democratic senator, she leaves behind a race in shambles. Of the three front-runners only one has stated that he plans on joining the Progressive Caucus if elected.
Stanley Chang has issued his Agenda for Change outlining his strong progressive positions.
His agenda starts with a wake up call:
A jobless recovery is no recovery at all.Amen, Stanley!
He goes on to advocate for infrastructure investment, pointing out that our key infrastructure dates back to the 50's and 60's.
We need to raise the minimum wage and we need to do it now, because no one who works full time should live in poverty. I join President Obama in calling for a national minimum wage of $10.10 an hour. Last year alone, Wall Street bonuses in New York alone were $26.7 billion dollars. That is $11 billion more than the combined income of every minimum wage worker in the country. We can do better for working families.He points out that not only does raising minimum wage increase spending and thus helps the economy but it relieves the government of having to subsidize low wage workers.
He favors increasing taxes on the wealthiest and chastises the GOP for stubbornly pushing spending cuts without revenue increases in their desire to reduce the deficit.
He advocates for free tuition in exchange for community service.
Debt is crushing our young generation before they even start their careers. Profiteering in student loan programs needs to be stopped. Our parents may have been able to work their way through college, but with high tuition and our rising cost of living, this is increasingly out of reach for today’s students.He joins Sen Brian Schatz in calling for expanding Social Security.
Recently, President Obama proposed that Social Security benefits switch to so-called “chained CPI” to calculate cost of living adjustments. This proposal represents an unacceptable cut to retirement payments and I firmly oppose it...Chang supports the Dream Act and cites his own parents as immigrants to the U.S. in his advocation for immigration reform.
...Social Security is currently predicted to be solvent for the next few decades, but with a simple fix it will be on a sound financial footing for generations. Only the first $113,700 of income is taxed for Social Security, but if we “scrap the cap” and make all income taxable, we will have the necessary funds to ensure that our seniors remain healthy and financially secure.
His view on Wall Street will be appreciate by those frustrated by their continued excesses and role in blowing up the world's economy.
I support Elizabeth Warren's 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act to stop investment banks from gambling away people's life savings. Until the 1990s, the Glass-Steagall Act created a firm barrier between investment and consumer banking.Stanley Chang's agenda hits all the positions we progressives espouse:
The repeal of this legislation encouraged investment banks to make risky bets with the savings of ordinary Americans. Many experts consider the repeal of Glass-Steagall to be a major contributing factor to the economic crash of 2008.
I propose to return order to our financial system by protecting working families’ hard-earned money and preventing banks from becoming “too big to fail.” If financial speculators want to put their own money into high-stakes investments, they are welcome to do so, but they should not be able to drag down our economy if their bets don’t pan out.
Assault weapon ban and gun control - check
Decrease fossil energy and encourage renewable energy - check
Marriage Equality - check
Restore and Increase Vet benefits, jobs, housing - check
Defend women's rights and pay equality - check
Label GMOs - check
Chang understands the intertwined relationship of GMOs and pesticides (herbicides are a subset of pesticides) and supports more careful use of these chemicals. Hawai'i is ground zero for GMO-Chem experimentation so this is a position that is popular across political parties here.
We must also regulate pesticide use in a sensible way so that we can protect our environment and our keiki from the effects of pollution and overuse of dangerous agricultural chemicals. These issues must be addressed with maximum scientific rigor while accounting for consumer safety and individual dietary preferences.Act Blue has just endorsed Chang saying:
Stanley Chang has fought for progressive values on the Honolulu City Council and has been consistent on important issues such as protecting our environment, creating good jobs that families can live on, marriage equality, and preventing gun violence.Contribute to Stanley Chang here.