Congressman Eric Swalwell returned to Dublin last Sunday for a kickoff rally in his run for President of the United States. "It's about going big, being bold and doing good."
A crowd of around 1000 attended the event held at Dublin High School, his alma mater. He quipped, "I see a few very surprised former teachers who did not expect to see me here."
Discussing his plan, he told the crowd, “It will be the first campaign to make ending gun violence a top priority". He noted that after every mass shooting, Congress does nothing.
In Parkland hope died. In a uniquely American way, through the courage and strength of children, hope was reborn. He declared, "We believe that every child has the right to learn without fear, that every parent has a right to hug their beautiful little babies when they come home from school".
He continued, “No one should be allowed to purchase a gun without going through a background check. People should no longer be able to own guns that only belong on the battle field. As President, I would institute a policy to buy back every single assault weapon.”
Swalwell talked about his background, the fact that his parents worked hard to achieve the American dream. As a result of their efforts, he was the first in his family to go to college.
"The promise of America is not reaching all Americans. When people work hard, it has to add up to doing better. We need to be the country that values the simple dignity of hard work." He pointed out that while the economy is described as good because of the rise in the stock market and GDP, the economy is not the stock market; it is not the GDP. "The economy is you doing better, saving more, and dreaming bigger."
He said we are living in an economy only designed to help those in the executive suites, not on the factory floors. He would end corporate immunity from taxes for companies sending jobs overseas. He would give them a lower tax rate than the Republicans have done, if they would share their profits with employees – all of them, not just the top floor. He would raise the minimum wage.
Health care was another issue that he discussed, with an emphasis on bringing down costs. He wants a public health care option available for all, one that competes with private plans. In addition, he thinks Medicare should be available for those who want it. "If you are sick, you will be seen; if you are seen, you won't go broke."
Turning to education, he said that he would build modern schools in every community. "A child's destiny should not depend on his or her zip code."
The government should not make money off of students. He proposed zero interest on student loans for public university students.
He would create laws to protect unions.
Clean renewables would be a way to begin addressing climate change. The manufacture of renewables would open up opportunities to make money from solutions, more than can be made from the manufacture of products causing the problems.
Immigration issues could be handled through technology, not by building a wall.
He spoke of equal justice for all, independence, freedom of the press and the belief that all of us, including the president, are not above the law.
Swalwell would honor the work of members of the military, who toil every day on our behalf keeping guard in the most dangerous places in the world.
As a member of the intelligence committee, he said that he knows the threats in the world and the cost of not acknowledging them. Being president means believing the word of our intelligence community over the word of Putin, and standing up to home grown enemies by denouncing white nationalists.
Moving forward means working together. He said, "As president I would have a team of rivals, a blended cabinet of Republicans and Democrats." His goal – to create a country for all Americans.
Swalwell, 38, now serving his fourth term representing California’s 15th Congressional District, announced his presidential candidacy April 8 on CBS’ “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.
Swalwell serves on the House Intelligence and Judiciary Committees; co-chairs the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee; and is founder and chairman emeritus of Future Forum – a group of young House Democrats focused on listening to and acting upon the concerns of millennial Americans. Read more about his background and platform at EricSwalwell.com