Issues

Green Energy

Michigan is poised to embrace the Green Energy Movement and Lansing must be a leader in this initiative. Advances at Michigan State University in environmentally friendly roofing make this a perfect opportunity to utilize the incredible minds of Lansing. As your representative, Grant will offer incentives and subsidies to business and homes that opt to convert their homes and businesses into sustainable structures.

We can further reduce our state’s reliance on fossil fuels by taking advantage of the position Michigan is in. Constructing wind turbines on the Great Lakes and installing solar panels on Lansing’s rooftops will help drive our progress of being a leader in the Green Energy Movement. Microgeneration of renewable energy will relieve pressure on Michigan’s energy infrastructure and allow citizens to more readily control their energy prices.

With Grant’s redesigned state income structure, the State of Michigan will be able to support home and business owners by increasing subsidies for renewable energy generation. The private market has seen the emergence of renewable energy as DTE has announced their plans to end their use of all coal by 2040. Green energy is the future and with your support both Lansing and Michigan can be better with Bradley.

Infrastructure

Michigan’s infrastructure is in dire straits. Our infrastructure budget is hemorrhaging $3 billion a year. Grant believes that the communities of Michigan must come together around common sense, grounded action steps so Michigan can provide for her citizens’ needs. First and foremost, Grant believes that money collected and allocated for infrastructure should be spent explicitly for that purpose and not be siphoned off to pricy boondoggles. Grant also proposes an increase to revenue for roads, bridges, sewers, and water lines via an increased diesel tax to fund repairs and general maintenance where it is so desperately needed. The rationale for an increase revenue on diesel fuels is due to the vehicles which use diesel also tend to weigh more and cause a greater amount of damage to michigan infrastructure. Additionally, semi-trucks, especially when overweight, cause as much wear and tear on roads as 10,000 cars.

To fix this, and ensure that those causing more damage are contributing more to the upkeep of our roads, Grant proposes increasing the fines on those semi’s who exceed the state mandated weight limit for semi trucks and increasing the number of open weigh stations throughout the state. The weight limit in Michigan is 80,000 pounds, and with good reason. As the previous source states, an increase of just 10,000 more pounds results in over a 40% increase in wear and tear on our roads. This can cause roads which were estimated to last about twenty years wear out in less than 10, drastically increasing upkeep costs and bleeding budgets dry.

Grant’s proposals to increase the revenue for Michigan’s infrastructure will help combat the costs of fixing, replacing, and maintaining our roads, bridges, sewers, and water lines.

Education Reform

Education is the cornerstone of Michigan. We must build a better environment for our primary schools, universities, and trade schools to cement both Lansing and Michigan’s place in the economy of tomorrow. Our children and students must not be left behind in the ever more interconnected web of the global economy by isolating and claustrophobic policies forced on us from rural Republicans. Lansing’s students deserve the best we can provide and Grant will fight tooth and nail to see your children’s futures brightened.

Our public schools are the only community structures that rival roads in their level of disrepair. Funding for underperforming schools, or those whose buildings are physically falling apart, will be made available on a dire needs basis. As your representative, Grant will fight for increased funding for public schools that offer advanced placement courses to better ready our students for college, trade schools, or additional educational opportunities.

We can, and will, do more for those who know a 4 year university is not the right path for them. With Grant as your representative, we will create a promise going forward for all state trade schools and community colleges to be made tuition free. Evidence that both the state and universities can come together to provide the quality education our students deserve has come in the recent announcement from the University of Michigan proclaiming in-state students will no longer be charged for tuition.

Questionnaire Responses

Civil Rights

What's your position on systemic problems facing people of color, including police brutality and the prison industrial complex?

In order to reduce and end the extreme cases of disproportionate police violence towards people of color, I want to implement the statewide mandatory use of body cameras by all police officers in the field, as well as increase community policing efforts, training for nonviolent conflict resolution, and increase the use of nonlethal weapons during necessary times of violence. Every one of these steps is feasible and will have nearly immediate impacts on police accountability, police responsiveness to emergency calls, police oversight, and on incidents of police brutality against people of color.

 

I would take a multifaceted approach to help end the pipeline from school to prison. The simplest step is to raise the age for juveniles to be tried as adults from 17, to 18. Across the state, counties are speaking up and supporting this as a measure to help steer kids who made a mistake away from a lifetime of prison. Rather than focus on punishing children for their mistakes, we need to focus on rehabilitating them and reintroducing them as productive members of society. Private prisons prey on the mistakes of the youngest and most disadvantaged members of our society. A shift to completely public prisons could alleviate the ironic injustice of the current prison system by removing the incentive for profit.

What's your position on LGBTQ+ rights, and what actions do you plan to take to protect those rights?

I am a staunch advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and will always be an ally; I marched in the Pride Parade this summer. In the Legislature, I will introduce a bill to preserve the innate right of every LGBTQ+ couple to adopt children, protect against everyday discrimination and discrimination in housing. In addition to that bill, I would support or introduce legislation that allowed for the use of a bathroom by whatever gender a person identifies as.

Drug War

Do you support the war on drugs?

Absolutely not. Billions of dollars and millions lives have been wasted or ruined in a war that treats illicit drug use as a criminal, rather than health issue. Our state and federal prisons are filled with nonviolent drug offenders. Instead of trying to fix the root cause of drug addiction affecting them, we are punishing their use of drugs. I would shift every first offense nonviolent drug addict to a mandatory rehabilitation program instead of prison.

Do you support legalizing recreational marijuana and remove marijuana from the Schedule 1 drug classification?

Yes, I support the legalization and regulation of recreational marijuana. From the tax proceeds on sold marijuana, I would create rehabilitation and prevention programs for more dangerous drugs, send additional funds towards school infrastructure repairs and after-school programs, and increase revenue sharing to townships and cities across the state.

Economic Justice

What are your thoughts on economic justice in Michigan, and what, if anything, do you plan to do regarding the matter?

In order to combat the extreme income inequality and economic injustice throughout the state, I would increase the funding of after-school programs for all students to give every one of them more equal footing, increase the amount of student aid grants available to students looking at college, vocational schools, and apprenticeships, and ease transitions from shrinking job markets to thriving ones through aggressive job training programs.

What actions do you plan to take to protect those most vulnerable among us, including those living in poverty or barely getting by in the working class?

I would lower the barrier for our citizens to get aid of any kind from the state; be it Medicaid, food assistance, or heating grants. For our citizens that are working and still struggling to get by, I would implement the mandatory use of profit-sharing for all companies in the state.

Do you support raising the minimum wage? If yes, how would you accomplish this raise and how high would you raise the minimum wage? If no, why not, or do you have an alternative suggestion to increase low-income wages?

Yes, I would go about it the way it’s being done now, through a ballot initiative. Our state is so gerrymandered that any attempt to pass livable wages through the Legislature won’t make it out of committee. With a ballot drive, the vast majority of the state who want this reform can make their voices heard.

Elections

In 2015, Michigan ranked last in a national study of state ethics and transparency. What initiatives or concepts do you support in the areas of campaign finance reform and influence of money in our political system?

I strongly support the use of state funds for campaigns to lessen the impact of lifetime lobbyists in Lansing. This would work through a matching of state funds to a set amount of small money donations made to campaigns throughout the state. I would once again close the loophole created by the Citizens United decision and codified by Republicans in the Legislature that allows Super PACs and candidate committees to coordinate. Corporate and special interests need to be curtailed, not expanded upon.

Do you intend to accept campaign donations from Super PACs, large corporations and other forms of “big money”? If yes, how can you demonstrate to us that you will not be under the influence of Super PACs, large corporations and other forms of “big money” or “dark money” before and after you are elected?

It depends on the Super PAC. If it is an organization that I agree with completely, then yes I would accept funds from them. To prove that I am still independent, I will attend every public meeting that I can, vote my conscience and constituency, explain every vote I make with a brief memo, and allow for easy access with a public cell phone on my persons at all times that any constituent can contact me with.

Is voter suppression a concern of yours? What do you plan to do to ensure a free and fair elections process for all?

Absolutely, and it is alarming. As seen in Alabama with the “Inactive Voter” scheme, disenfranchisement of traditionally Democrat voters is an active problem. First and foremost, I would repeal the voter ID laws passed during the Snyder administration. This is a discriminatory law that fails to solve a voter fraud problem that does not exist. It is a dirty political maneuver and nothing more.

Healthcare

Do you think healthcare should be a right to all people and if so, what steps will you take to protect that right?

Yes, and to protect that right, I would implement a Medicare-for-All program. While not feasible on the state level in Michigan at this moment, it should be one of the core issues for every national Democrat in office. In the Legislature, I would introduce bills to simplify the process for Medicaid approval for patients and increase funding for the program to allow hospitals and doctors to accept it without it being considered charity care.

Education

What are your views on education? Where do you stand on tuition for higher education? Do you support public education, and if so, what will you do to protect our public school system?

Tuition at colleges and universities is beyond unreasonable. It creates an extreme hindrance for a sizable portion of the graduating student body every year, incentivizes schools to take applicants that would be better suited to different pathways, and is creating a dangerous economic phenomenon. Graduating students with debt, like myself, cannot afford to spend like our economy needs us to and we are seeing drastic slowdowns due to it.

 

For earlier education, increased funding won’t solve every problem, but it is a place to start. Increases in funding to disadvantaged districts can bring their school infrastructure to the 21st century and will allow for more diverse and useful subject matter. As a legislator, I would introduce a bill that would require schools to offer an increased amount of AP and career training courses.

Environment

What legislation would you propose or support to ensure we are doing more to protect our environment?

In order to protect the Great Lakes, I strongly support the closing of Line 5. No pipeline is completely secure, but every expert agrees that the life expectancy for Line 5 is far beyond its safe date.

 

I would also support increased regulations and standards on emissions from newly sold vehicles, increase the renewable energy goals across the state to transition to completely renewable energy systems by 2040, and pursue every available option to prevent the spread of invasive species into the Great Lakes.

What steps will you take to transform our energy systems away from fossil fuels as we transition into renewable energy systems?

I will introduce legislation in the first month to increase renewable energy microgeneration and storage grants, implement more aggressive use of renewable energy projects like the solar carports at Michigan State University, increase the incentives for city buildings to use windmills and solar panels, and reduce the energy use of government owned buildings through the use of “green rooves” (rooves with widespread vegetation on them).

Immigration

What's your stance on sanctuary cities and other protections for immigrants?

I stand in strong support of sanctuary cities. Immigrants come to the United States for the chance at a better life; we should not imprison and deport them for it. I am in support of amnesty for any immigrants who have come to the United States illegally, and want to streamline the immigration process to reduce the amount of border crossings.

Religious Freedom

Do you support mosque surveillance?

No, it is patently illegal. From time to time, patriots who champion this should consult the Constitution.

Should businesses be allowed to discriminate based on their beliefs or the beliefs of their customers?

No, a person’s private religious beliefs should not be forced upon their employees or customers. Whether it is a cake for a couple or birth control for an employee, private religious beliefs of an individual should not deny an item or medication to another.

Taxes

What is your stance on our current tax system? What would you do differently?

It needs an overhaul. The progressive tax system we have in place is a good framework to start with, but our taxes on top earners must be restored to the levels of prior administrations before dangerous cuts became common. Tax levels during the FDR and Eisenhower administrations show the precedent for high taxes on the top 10%. In addition to income tax reform, capital gains and the corporate tax rate need to be increased. Both reap an immense benefit from the government and its policies, but do not pay their fair share into it.

Women's Rights

What is your position on a woman's right to choose? Will you legislate based on your position? Explain.

I believe that life starts at conception. I’m Catholic, and so it is a deeply religious issue for me. However, I will not dictate what someone does to their body, and would actively support increases to funding for Planned Parenthood and other women’s health organizations. My religious views will not dictate my lawmaking, and I support a woman’s right to choose.

Worker's Rights

Do you support workers co-ops and/or unions? Will you legislate based on your support or opposition of either? Explain.

Yes, workers need the support of a union to negotiate fair wages for all employees. Since Right-to-Work legislation passed in Michigan, workers have suffered. The quality of benefits offered as well as wages has either stopped or decreased for workers affected by unions. I would make every effort to repeal Right-to-Work legislation and support unions whenever it helps the worker.

War

What is your stance on America's declaration of and involvement in war, foreign or domestic?

If the United States is to be involved in any kind of conflict abroad, it needs to be a broad consensus of nations with the support of regional and global leaders. As the world’s last superpower, we have the obligation to not impose our will with blood and bullets against any nation we disagree with. Whenever possible, we need to broker agreements through diplomacy, not saber rattling.