Betsy and several women smiling on a bench.

Healthcare

Betsy firmly believes that healthcare is a right, not a privilege.

For far too long, America’s health insurance system has made healthcare costlier, less accessible, and less efficient for families and small businesses. Betsy will fight to make sure no family loses someone they love because they can't get to a doctor, can't afford their doctor's visit or medicine, or stand to lose everything they've worked for due to overwhelming medical bills.

Betsy nearly lost her son, Jack, to a rare illness after he was bitten by a tick at age 12. Jack survived, but without good health insurance the family would have lost everything. Betsy firmly believes that everyone should have access to quality and affordable healthcare.

She will always support Planned Parenthood, and will never take away a woman's right to make her own healthcare decisions. Protecting Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid are top priorities for Betsy.

Betsy will work to:

Take steps toward universal healthcare coverage by stabilizing the ACA and protecting Essential Health Benefits

Support a public option that can compete with private insurers

Stand up for healthcare protections for people with pre-existing conditions

Support Planned Parenthood and a woman's right to make her own healthcare decisions

Protect Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid benefits

Allow Medicare to negotiate prescription drug prices

Promote preventive healthcare to lower costs for healthcare in the long run


 
 
Betsy in a machine shop, talking with machinists.

Jobs and the Middle Class

Betsy will always put the needs of the middle class first, not corporations or special interests.

She will work to get money out of politics and close loopholes that allow billionaires and corporations to secretly spend unlimited money on campaigns. As we continue to rebuild and grow our economy, Betsy understands that we have to stay focused on job creation, support our small businesses, and invest in the future. Illinoisans want a local economy that creates a good life for their families and that can support future generations. 

Betsy will work to:

Create real tax reform for the middle class and small businesses that will grow the local economy

Invest in upgrading and modernizing infrastructure including: roads, bridges, electrical grids, waterways, and pipeline distribution systems 

Make small business loans easier to get and increase small businesses' access to government contracts

Lower the small business tax rate and curb increasing costs

Expand funding for agricultural technology and business startups

Advocate for partnerships between high schools and trade unions to encourage movement toward apprenticeships and trade jobs

Raise the cap on employer-provided tuition assistance to help companies cover tuition costs and advanced training for employees

 

 
Betsy walking past a cafe with a Mother and her 3 children.

Empowering Women and Families

Betsy believes empowering women and their families is a matter of economic and social justice.

She'll protect women's healthcare, so millions can access safe, free options for birth control, life-saving cancer screenings, and other critical healthcare tools. She will strongly advocate for policies that put women on equal footing with men and provide pathways to increased opportunities for the families they support.

Betsy will work to:

Champion legislation for equal pay for equal work

Prioritize safety on college campuses

Ensure the routine reauthorization of a strong Violence Against Women Act

Promote policies that allow for flexibility in the workplace including family leave and caring for children and elderly family members

Protect a woman's right to make her own healthcare decisions and treat women's reproductive health with individual respect and without additional costs

Strengthen sexual harassment and abuse policies across all employment sectors that put victims first and bring transparency to the reporting process

 

 
Betsy talking with a circle of several people.

Education

As a former teacher and a mother of three, Betsy believes that a quality education opens doors for better lives.

She wants to make sure that a good secondary education isn't out of reach for middle-class families. Whether it is an apprenticeship, community college, four-year university,  or mid-career retraining, Betsy wants students of all ages prepared for the changing work force.

Betsy will work to:

Make public colleges and universities more affordable and allow those with crushing student loan debt to refinance

Raise the child tax credit to 18 so parents can allocate that money towards educational costs

Open avenues for paying off existing student debt including making it easier for employers to offer student loan repayment as an employee benefit and lowering interest rates

Encourage two-year and four-year colleges to expand income share agreement programs so students pay for tuition costs through jobs secured post-college

Allow colleges to incorporate "student ambassadors" into their work-study programs to mentor high school seniors through the college application and financial aid process

Incentivize businesses to fund continuing education by introducing a tax credit for money contributed to a 529 account for an employee or an employee’s child

Raise the cap on employer-provided tuition assistance to help companies cover tuition costs and advanced training for employees

Preserve higher-education benefits, such as employer contributions, deduction of tuition and qualified educational expenses and allow companies to cover the cost of a college education at community colleges and other partner institutions for working students

 

 
Betsy on a bench, emphasizing with her hands to two other women, who are sitting next to her

Investing in Rural Illinois

Betsy's roots in the district go back generations.

Her family still owns and operates the family farm in Niantic, Illinois where her grandmother grew up. Betsy appreciates the many challenges facing farmers and will advocate for policies that protect them. She knows it's critical that small-business owners in rural areas have access to fast, reliable communication and internet services to allow them to compete in our changing economy.

Betsy will work to:

Increase investments in modern, efficient waterways to help move products to market

Protect crop insurance to keep our farmers growing

Connect rural communities to modern technology outlets through increased investments in broadband and wireless communications

Expand funding for agricultural technology and business startups

Maintain full funding of the Natural Resources Conservation Service to help farmers improve soil health, build resiliency, and promote conservation of land and water

Promote expanded trade markets and protect Illinois' access to the global agricultural marketplace

 

 
Photo from across the room of Betsy sitting in a booth, talking with the man sitting across from her.

Tax Reform

Betsy opposes the Republican tax bill that gives a massive tax cut to millionaires while adding $1.9 trillion to the national debt.

The Republican tax bill is endangering funding for Social Security and Medicare. She will promote solutions that build our economy from the middle out, not the top down. Betsy believes that tax reform should benefit our hardworking families and encourage job growth here in the United States.

Betsy will work to:

Retain deductions and credits for medical expenses, teachers, graduate students, student loans, and other individual breaks needed to help families

Incentivize businesses to invest in apprenticeships and job-training programs

Prevent corporations from hiding profits overseas to avoid paying their taxes by moving to a sales apportionment tax based system such as those employed at the state levels

Preserve higher-education benefits such as employer contributions, deduction of tuition and qualified educational expenses and allow companies to cover the cost of a college education at community colleges and other partner institutions for working students

Help small businesses with cash-flow by simplifying the tax code and lowering rates


 
 
Betsy standing with her arms crossed

Addressing Gun Violence

Betsy comes from a family and community of responsible gun owners, and has deep respect for individual rights to own guns under the 2nd Amendment.

She strongly believes we have to address gun violence as a community by bringing gun owners and non-gun owners to the discussion to determine common sense ways to reduce violence.

Betsy will work to:

Enforce universal background checks, including online and private sales

Address gun violence as a public health issue by allowing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to study gun violence in our communities

Prevent individuals who have been placed on the terrorist watch list, who have been convicted of violent crimes or domestic violence, or who are mentally ill, from purchasing guns


 
 
Betsy walking down the street with trees on all sides, arm over the shoulder of the person she's walking with

Energy and the Environment

Betsy believes clean air and water are basic human rights, and that we are all responsible for preventing the acceleration of climate change.

Reducing greenhouse gases and finding solutions to combat climate change will be a top priority for Betsy. She supports alternative energies to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels, and will work to strike a balance between protecting our environment, and meeting Illinoisans' energy needs.

Betsy will work to:

Make new investments in energy producing communities

Protect our public lands and waters

Invest in safer, cleaner, and modern infrastructure to upgrade our electrical grids, waterways, roads and bridges

Expand clean energy and research development

Reduce methane emissions and eradicate lead poisoning by repairing and replacing old, leaky pipes

Maintain full funding of the Natural Resources Conservation Service to help farmers improve soil health, build resiliency and promote conservation of land and water

 

 
Betsy sitting at a table in a diner with three people, one wearing a 'veteran' hat.

Veterans

Betsy will be a leading voice on behalf of our veterans, active duty service members, and their families.

She is focused on improving healthcare for veterans and ensuring they receive the benefits they have earned in a timely manner and with fewer errors.

Betsy will work to:

Update and upgrade veteran care facilities and hospitals

Improve veterans' services in Illinois communities

Prioritize funding the VA to guarantee all veterans have access to necessary healthcare

Strengthen veterans' care by expanding mental health services, increasing access to healthcare in rural areas, and improving care for female veterans

Advocate for programs to support veterans who are homeless or at risk of homelessness

Support the families of veterans and active duty military members

 

 
Betsy listening to a community member speak

Immigration

Betsy's immigrant great-grandparents moved to the United States to build better lives.

Both parties in Washington have failed to fix our immigration problem. Betsy believes hardworking, law-abiding immigrants are an important and valuable part of the fabric of our nation and wants to make sure other families have opportunities to build good lives for themselves and the generations that follow.

Betsy will work to:

End the shameful partisan politics around this issue by members of both parties and advocate for bipartisan, comprehensive immigration reform that provides a path to earned citizenship for undocumented immigrants, while protecting American workers and strengthening border security

Codify DACA to protect DREAMers by granting permanent residency and an earned path to citizenship through higher education, military service or employment

Support ICE and our Border Patrol by giving them the tools they need to stop illegal immigrants from crossing our borders, and end the family separation policy so these agencies can focus on border security and enforcing interior immigration laws that keep our communities safe

Respect the human rights of immigrants who have come to this country seeking a better life