Mike Huckleberry Announces Candidacy For 4th District U.S. Congress
I am proudly announcing my candidacy as a Democrat for 4th District U. S. Congress. As a small business owner in Greenville I was propelled into the "political arena" when Electrolux announced they would be moving 2700 jobs to Mexico for wages of $1.57 an hour. When Congressman Dave Camp stated that these trade agreements were good for Michigan, good for America, and offered great opportunity, I became outraged at his insensitivity and short sightedness! I began speaking out against job outsourcing and "economic terrorism" by using
placemats in my restaurant that asked pointed questions to our Congressman, who, at that time, had voted for 14 trade agreements. The placemat and my willingness to expose trade agreements for what they really are, short term greed with long term impact that offer multinational corporations an opportunity to exploit the poor, drew national media attention. I was soon being encouraged to run against my extremist opponent, which I did in 2004. As a "political newcomer" and virtual unknown, I gained the most votes of any Democratic challenger against my well-financed, career politician, opponent. I do not believe it is necessary to be a wealthy lawyer or CEO type to represent America.
I attracted votes from Democrats, Moderate Republicans, Conservatives, and Independents alike. I am counting on drawing enough votes this time to win! I have the leadership to work with both sides of the issues and will vote on their merit and for what is good for America.
I have no desire to be a "career politician" and will not be "owned" by anyone. My opponent has a proven voting record of siding almost 100% of the time with big business, what is good for his own personal gain, the Republican Party, and what is to the detriment of America. I believe our nation is crying out for bi-partisan leadership and not "party line fellowship."
The time is at hand when Electrolux will be moving 2700 jobs out of our country. I have confidence in my community's future. With two businesses to be concerned with, I could certainly justify sitting on the "political sidelines," but Democracy is not a spectator sport. I am motivated by what St. Augustine once said, "Hope has two daughters, one is Anger and the other is Courage Anger at the way things are, and Courage to change them." I have both! I will continue this fight as long as middle class Americans are treated like second class citizens.
According to recent polls about 70% of the American people believe our nation is going in the wrong direction. I intend to work to change America's direction.
I stand for the "American Dream" and the "Promise of America," however my vision includes all of America, not just the rich and powerful.
I support the renegotiation of all trade agreements and the enforcement of human rights and environmental protections that are in them. Trade agreements should be negotiated in favor of all of America, not slanted to favor the rich and powerful. There are several more trade agreements ready to be "fast tracked" by this administration. They should be stopped dead in their tracks until they are negotiated to our advantage. My opponent will support them; I will not! The trade agreements already in place are turning the "American dream" into the "American nightmare."
Dave Camp voted for CAFTA against the wishes of the majority of his constituents. He has now voted for 15 job outsourcing trade agreements, turning his back on working families, small business, and family farms. Voting for trade agreements in an industrial state like ours is like committing "economic suicide."
My opponents unwavering support of "big business" and "party line politics" 0clearly shows he is an economic terrorist. I ask the voters, we know how big business and politicians are receiving big money benefits, but how do you and your family benefit?
What is in it for you and America's future? The projected 2005 $700 billion trade imbalance with Mexico, China, and others is not working in our favor. Voting to take away a persons job and opportunity to feed, clothe, educate, and shelter their family is not only wrong, it is immoral.
We need to bring back fiscal responsibility. Continued record deficits are not the way to run a country. Dave Camp voted himself another pay raise in the face of these economic times, as many Americans are losing their homes, jobs, and their share of the American dream. This shows a total lack of reality and respect for our nations troubled times. As a small businessman, I know you don't give yourself a pay raise until the books are balanced.
I support single-payer health insurance for every man, woman, and child in America. Healthcare should be a right for every one, not just the elite. Out of 19 industrial nations, we are the only one that does not have some type of national health insurance. This puts us at an insurmountable disadvantage in competing in the Global Economy.
Education must be fully funded. We should never under fund our future. I support our teachers for fair wage and benefits. They are not part of the problem; they are part of the answer.
We need more alternative energy programs. The energy bill that gave billions of dollars in tax breaks to oil and coal companies, already experiencing billions of dollars in profits off the American people, show how far my opponent will go to help the wealthy while turning his back on America's middle class.
We need to support common sense environmental policies. We owe it to our children and grandchildren to leave them with clean air and water. They need it for survival, and I would like to remind moral issue voters that pollution kills.
Support of our soldiers and their families is essential. I can't support the false information used to lead us into war, or the rush that sent our sons and daughters without being properly equipped. Nor can I support the mismanagement of the war from the beginning.
I am fully prepared to debate my opponent on all of the issues, to show a clear and contrasting difference between Mr. Camp and myself. I believe in "we the people" and my opponent believes in "we the multinationals."
My opponent only accepted one debate to defend his record last election. I am making the same offer as I made last election: 14 counties, 14 debates. He should not be ashamed of his record and want to hide it. I know I will be proud of mine and let everyone know how I vote on issues that effect us all. Voters deserve a fair opportunity to see and hear where we stand on the issues.
I am a proud Democratic candidate for this office. The Democratic Party has a proud legacy that includes Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and the G.I. Bill. I am proud of our affiliation between our party and organized labor; together we helped create the middle class and disposable income. To the Democrats of this district I say this: Hold your heads up and look to the future. The American Dream is still there. We will carry our message to the people, we will articulate our values, and we will stand firm in our beliefs. When we do this, America, our children and our grandchildren win.
To the Republicans of the 4th district I want you to know my fight is not against your party. I will not stand before you and use the word Republican as slander, because I know that your party has a proud legacy as well. The Republican Party is the great defender of the free market, the tireless advocate of a strong military, and a vocal supporter of our 2nd amendment; all of which I support. America has always worked best when our two parties have come together.
My campaign will be based on facts and issues and will offer you real choices between candidates. I am dedicating my campaign to America's working families, middle class America, and America's poor. We helped build this great nation and we deserve our share of the American Dream. What has always made America the greatest nation on earth and separated us from the third world countries is a strong middle class.
I stand ready to defend the American Dream and the Promise of America!
Michael R. Huckleberry
Candidate, U. S. House