Campaign Issues

Nick believes there are many issues that can be addressed better in District 35.

Domestic Violence

As a society and community, we should understand that a stable, loving, family is the foundation of peace and economic stability. Domestic Violence strikes at the heart of families and tears them apart. 

Domestic violence is nothing new, but has received a recent resurgence of attention in San Antonio due to the shockingly high number of confirmed domestic violence murders recorded there, 28 in 2018 alone. 

Austin and all other areas in District 35 are also stuffing from an increase in Domestic Violence. The most vulnerable are being brutally victimized not only physically, but emotionally, psychologically, financially, and any other way an abuser can exert power and control. 

Perpetrators of Domestic Violence are also statistically responsible for sexual assaults, child abuse, molestation, as well as being both consumers, suppliers, and intermediaries in Human Trafficking.

I’ve got several proposals that will not only address the victims of domestic violence, but also that will address the scourge that are the abusers.  Join me in fighting for the families of District 35!

Human Trafficking

Too  Much TrafficHuman trafficking is modern-day slavery, with mostly women and children enslaved in the commercial sex industry.  Not to be confused with human smuggling, human trafficking is defined as the recruitment, harboring, transportation, provision or obtaining of a person for labor or services through the use of force, fraud, or coercion for the purpose of subjection to involuntary servitude, peonage, debt bondage or slavery.  It includes any act in which a commercial sex act is induced by force, fraud or coercion, or in which the person induced to perform such act is not yet 18 years old.

Several factors make San Antonio is not only the Texas hub, but also The U.S., and North American hub of Human Trafficking. 

—Three major transportation routes run through San Antonio, I-35, I-37, and I-10. 

—Proximity to the porous border with Mexico, through which not only undocumented immigrants are crossing, but also Human Traffickers.

—International airports in San Antonio and Austin.

—Military personnel, often very transient, are often in and out of the area, many times with family, resulting in large numbers of rental properties of all sizes that Traffickers use as Trap Houses or Stash Houses. Due to that transient nature, many people don’t ever know their neighbors and would not necessarily notice the otherwise obvious signs and red flags of Human Trafficking.

—With no national or state standards, San Antonio and Austin have grossly understaffed police departments and no actual plan for combatting Human Trafficking. Law enforcement also suffers from a severe lack of training in Human Trafficking at a Department-wise level. 

—There is little to no cooperation between the military leaders and community leaders to increase awareness, educate, and combat Human Trafficking.

—Broken families, most often due to Domestic Violence, make the children and even young mothers at a much higher risk for Human Trafficking.

—Due to a lack of sound leadership and policy, both San Antonio and Austin have high populations of homeless persons who are at a greater risk of being trafficked.

—Communities are fragmented and largely disassociated. They also have little to no awareness or education in how to identify Human Trafficking. In the event Human Trafficking was suspected, there is no known procedure for reporting or consolidating the information other than standard Uniform Crime Reports.

Having worked with numerous local, state, federal, and international law enforcement agencies working task force operations as a civilian and military prosecutor, as well as working with non-governmental organizations on the international federal, and local levels, I have many specific ideas and proposed legislation to focus the fight against Human Trafficking. Join us in making District 35 an example of how to fight Human Trafficking and not how to lead the nation in human trafficking!

Support For Veterans

With nearly twenty years of continuous armed conflict on multiple fronts, Veterans are in dire need of our assistance. Many have left their service broken, physically, mentally, or both. Often times the skills used in the military don’t translate easily to a civilian occupation or don’t have any need in the civilian sector. 

VA Healthcare is irreparably broken and must be completely replaced, “overhauls” and “new programs” have not shown any success in slowing the rate of Veteran suicides, and wait times just to get appointments of any kind are unacceptably long, not just days, but weeks, months, and sometimes over a year depending on the service needed.

More must be done to transition Service Members to civilian life. I have been told time and again that programs advertised were either so small as to have no meaningful contribution to the masses, or no longer exist entirely. Making matters worse, the people assisting Service Members seem to have no idea what programs or services are available or unavailable. Whatever the issue, it needs to be corrected. 

On the healthcare front, a Service Member should be able to obtain medical services at anywhere by showing a Veteran ID. Medically retired Veterans go “No Cost” medical care for life. A Service Member who is not disabled but retires after 20 or more years of service must pay a premium for medical coverage. This is just plain wrong, those retired Service Members should not have to pay a premium. 

Whether Retired or Medically Retired, the healthcare should be from civilian providers of their choosing. The monstrosity that is VA healthcare is a money pit and unnecessary.

Specifically addressing Veteran suicides, the most recent proposal is a new drug! We can’t keep throwing drugs at every perceived problem, it is time to treat the underlying causes. Drugs will never provide a real and lasting treatment or allow that Veteran an opportunity at any meaningful quality of life. 

As a fellow Veteran, I am with you and will not forget you. I may be fighting against long odds, but I will fight for you if you allow me to serve you!

Border Security

The issue of border security has devolved into an argument between humanitarianism and xenophobia versus rule of law and national security, depending upon the political ideology you tend to identify with.   Our founding fathers made it clear that the purpose of allowing foreigners into our fledgling nation was not to recruit millions of new voters or to secure permanent ruling majorities for their political parties.  It was to preserve, protect, and enhance the republic they put their lives on the line to establish.  

In a 1790 House debate on naturalization, James Madison opined: “It is no doubt very desirable that we should hold out as many inducements as possible for the worthy part of mankind to come and settle amongst us, and throw their fortunes into a common lot with ours.  Madison asserted, “Not merely to swell the catalogue of people.  No, sir, it is to increase the wealth and strength of the community; and those who acquire the rights of citizenship, without adding to the strength or wealth of the community are not the people we are in want of.”  Madison argued plainly that America should welcome the immigrant who could assimilate, but exclude the immigrant who could not readily “incorporate himself into our society.”

Clearly many things have changed since 1790, but the intent of our founders remains the same.  As a nation we are and should be concerned with humanitarianism, but not at the expense of the safety and security of our citizens.  So first, we must secure our borders and stop the free-flow of illegal immigration.  Without a doubt, there are criminals and those who desire and plot to do our nation harm that blend in with those who have no harmful intent. However, with an unsecured border and no sufficient way to properly evaluate them, we have an untenable condition.  

Because we do, most definitely have a crisis at the border, we must recognize that our responsibility as a society is the humane treatment of those within our borders.  That’s not to say they should be granted immediate citizenship or resident alien status, but it does mean that they should absolutely not be herded and corralled as animals.  That is not how we would treat our own families, that is not how we would want our loved ones to be treated, and that is not reflective of our values as a society.  That likely will require states that do not have an international border to share the burden of providing temporary housing rather than filling border detention facilities far beyond limits.  Further, to the absolute best of our ability, we must keep families together unless there is a threat or danger to the child/children in doing so.  Ours is the most prosperous, caring, generous nation in the world, and we must continue to ensure our actions reflect who we are and not let politics dictate our behavior.  

Once the border is secured, we must ensure a viable system is in place to quickly and thoroughly evaluate asylum claims as well as ensure the deportation of those whose claims have been adjudicated and denied. Unfettered chain-migration cannot be allowed to continue, as it has led to an unmanageable level of migration and persons immediately dependent upon public assistance that is unsustainable.  A long-standing rule that immigrants who come to our country legally have to be able to support themselves was relaxed under the administration of Barack Obama, opening the floodgates that have since stayed open.  

It is time to get back to the principles of our founders and legally admit those who can contribute to our community and who will assimilate and become Americans.  We can and should continue to provide humanitarian relief to those who qualify and follow the international rules regarding the seeking of asylum.  Regardless of whether a temporary or permanent alien, resident, or citizen status is granted or obtained, we must always treat those within our borders with the dignity, care, kindness, and compassion as we would want for ourselves or members of our family, it’s the right thing to do.

 

Healthcare

Jane

The current estimated population of the United States is 330 million, and as of the 4th quarter of 2018, the percentage of uninsured was estimated at 13.7%, approximately 45.2 million.  According to multiple polls and studies, half of those uninsured are choosing not to be insured for their own personal reasons.  Thus, approximately 22.6 million Americans are uninsured but wish to be insured.  

The big “fight” as highlighted by media narratives is that there are only two choices, status quo, or a single-payer, government run system of medical care.  I believe that narrative is being pushed because it provides the biggest headlines, most vitriolic fighting between candidates and office holders, but does not speak to the needs of real citizens, my friends and neighbors, brothers and sisters of District 35.  

Why take choice of healthcare away from 288 million people in order to find a way to insure 22.6 million?  Instead, how about removing restrictions and regulations on insurance companies that prevent them from competing across state lines, which would increase competition and drive prices down.  Don’t subsidize insurance companies, rather, let them survive or perish based on their ability to serve you, the consumer.  Promote faith based health care cooperatives and health savings accounts that allow us to choose what works best for us, our families, and our situations.  

As a veteran of both the Navy and Army, active duty and reserve, enlisted and officer, 1986-2019, I feel confident in telling you that the government running healthcare is a terrifying concept!  Think no further than the problems that persist in the VA medical system.

Do not let the government tell you and our friends, neighbors, brothers and sisters how to provide for our family’s healthcare, that is NOT a function of government and is only a means to make citizens dependent on the government.  Government exists for the people, not the other way around. Allow me to serve you, in improving healthcare without ceding your healthcare decisions to the government!

Pro-Abundant Life

I am a Pro-Life Christian. Spiritually, I believe life begins prior to conception. “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” —Jeremiah 1:5. As a being of flesh and blood, I believe life begins at conception.

Many politicians and candidates have the mistaken belief that overturning Roe v. Wade will put the states in position to independently decide whether or not to allow abortion. That is an incorrect belief based on a misunderstanding of or disregard for the law. 

Should Roe v Wade be overturned, then the “penumbra” created and now called a “right to privacy” would implicitly be overturned. Thus, any state law changes allowing abortion would be overturned as unconstitutional. 

Additionally, most politicians and candidates speak in platitudes when mentioning the needs of expectant mothers and families considering abortion.

As Christians, if we are as serious as we say we are about saving the lives of unborn children, we must come to terms with the reasons for women’s abortion decisions. At the top of the list are two glaring ones Christians could help change: an inability to care for dependents and an inability to afford a baby.

All the women in the US facing an abortion decision need what all moms need: support, along with sufficient food and clothing for their children, access to healthcare, childcare, jobs, affordable housing, and time to care for their children with paid family leave.

For fiscal conservatives, if saving lives is what matters most, our walk must match our talk.  We must live pro-life and not just talk pro-life?

We must be advocating for pro-life policies in a way that communicates both our care for the woman and her unborn baby, not one above the other.

Pro-life Christians must also take care not to vilify the one in four women who’ve had an abortion. God’s grace extends to every kind of sin and every person who would place their trust in Christ. His cross offers forgiveness of sin.

We must defend life where life begins because every other human right depends on a right to life. Our unborn children are the most vulnerable and voiceless, and we must stand in the gap for them.

In lifting up the cause of the unborn, it is imperative that we also do something about the situations of desperation the abortion lobby uses to prey upon people. It is not enough to just say that abortion is not the answer. 

All Christians must incorporate a robust pro-life ethic in our regard for vulnerable children in foster care, victims of human trafficking, prisoners, people with disabilities, immigrants, and refugees.  That is not an argument or justification for open borders or no-holds-barred immigration. It is a call for valuing the lives of all born and unborn children within our nation’s borders. 

There is fear in the pro-abortion culture that pro-life people are only interested in a political solution and that the well-being of women and families will be at stake should this political victory come to fruition. 

Here is what the pro-abortion movement thinks: If abortion becomes harder to access after Roe v. Wade is overturned, pro-life people will simply stand by and let women and men struggle, without any support, through difficult pregnancy decisions. Accordingly, the antidote that we as Christians can use to overcome this fear is for us to not just be pro-life but to be “pro abundant life.”  “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” —John 10:10.

What does abundant life look like to a child we desire to save from abortion? As Christians, these are the tenets we should encourage and build into people’s lives:

Because the only source of true and lasting transformation is the gospel, we must lead people into relationships with Jesus Christ.

Because 86% of abortions in the United States are among unmarried women, we must promote healthy marriage as a critical factor in preventing abortions and as the optimal environment to raise children.

Because the father of an unborn baby is the most influential factor in a mother’s decision to abort, we must work to break the cycle of abortion by engaging fathers and helping them be involved, responsible, and committed contributors to their families.

Because our culture no longer values the sanctity of human life and the sanctity of the family as God designed it, we must seek to influence it by compassionately transforming hearts and minds.

This is the difference between being satisfied when a baby’s life is saved versus being satisfied when a child has the opportunity to be raised by his or her own two married parents, who love each other, love their child, and love God. In other words, atheists can solve for heartbeats, but Christians must solve for heartbeats that are heaven-bound.

As pro-life Christians, we are for life, and we are for love.  We must serve single and pregnant moms and love them right where they are. Being pro-life is a stance, but pro-love is an action. 

We all have love to give. Can you help a single mom write a résumé or look for scholarships? Can you fix her car? Can you babysit her kid? Can you cover her childcare expenses? Can you mentor and teach or nurture and care? Can you show her how to balance a checkbook? Can you give to pro-life non-profits that are assisting women in need? Can you lead an abortion healing class? Can you lead a support group for women with unintended pregnancies?  A return to Judeo-Christian values and communities based on them looks after one another, government is not the solution.

We can’t fix all their problems, but we can point them to the One who does. And we can ensure no single mom has to walk alone.

Support for Israel

Christians support Israel because we believe that the words of Moses and the ancient prophets of Israel were inspired by God. We believe that the emergence of a Jewish state in the land promised by God to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was ordained by God.

We believe that God has a plan for this nation which He intends to be a blessing to all the nations of the earth.

We support Israel because Israel is an island of democracy, an island of individual freedom, an island of the rule of law, and an island of modernity in the midst of a sea of dictatorial regimes, the suppression of individual liberty, and a fanatical religion intent on returning to the feudalism of 8th Century Arabia.

You must realize that the God who spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai is our God. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are our spiritual Patriarchs. Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel are our prophets. King David, a man after God's own heart, is our hero. The Holy City of Jerusalem is our spiritual capital. And the continuation of Jewish sovereignty over the Holy Land is a further bulwark to us that the God of the Bible exists and that His Word is true.

We should clearly take note that Christians serve a Jew that we believe was the divine Messiah of Israel, spoken of by the ancient prophets, to whom He entrusted the worldwide dissemination of His message to 12 Jewish apostles.

We are with Israel, let us serve God together!

 

Why Christians Support Israel