Medicare for All
In the richest country in the world, it is unacceptable that 29 million Americans are without health insurance. Everybody gets sick. But an illness or injury shouldn’t cause your family to go broke. Medicare for All will lower premiums and expand coverage to every American, regardless of income or pre-existing conditions. With Medicare for All, families will never have to pay inflated premiums because of a pre-existing condition, or battle with their insurance company over huge, unexpected bills in the mail.
Millions of Americans already have coverage through Medicare or Tricare for the military, and they would never give it up. Mark will fight for the shift to Medicare for All because it’s the best way to improve coverage for those with insurance and expand coverage to millions who are going without.
Ending Mass Shootings
The U.S. has less than 5% of the world’s population, but almost half of the world’s civilian-owned guns. Americans also face gun violence and mass shootings at a scale without comparison in the rest of the world. We must improve background checks to stop dangerous people from buying guns, as well as passing Red Flag legislation that empowers the spouses or parents of people exhibiting threatening behavior to do something about it.
We must also eliminate the boyfriend loophole, which allows individuals convicted of stalking or domestic abuse to legally obtain guns if they weren’t living with the person they abused.
Mark fully supports Moms Demand Action and their work to end gun violence in the United States. Dangerous automatic weapons have no place on our streets or in our schools. Congress must act to pass universal background checks, Red Flag legislation that disarms would-be killers, and a ban on military-style assault weapons.
Send a message to Ann Wagner that we’ve had enough: elect Democrats like Mark Osmack who can speak with authority and bring progress on this life or death issue.
Defense and National Security
The best way to honor, serve, and protect our military servicemembers is by ensuring the US does not enter unnecessary and unending wars. Mark is committed to ending the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and increasing oversight over defense spending.
Campaign Finance Reform
Money in politics is a huge problem, as politicians are more concerned with raising money than with listening to people at home. Mark supports the Clean Missouri Initiative to increase integrity, transparency, and accountability in government; and is also committed to the reforms called for by Candidates with a Contract.
We need to end corruption, overturn Citizens United, and end partisan gerrymandering for our democracy to reach its highest ideals.
Mark wants to make education affordable once again by restoring funding for childcare, pre-K, trade schools, and community colleges. We should also expand programs that forgive student debt to students who work in public service after graduating. The G.I. Bill opened the door for Mark to attend graduate school, but you shouldn’t have to go to war to afford a high-quality education.
Jobs & Economic Security
A strong economy is meaningless without a strong middle class, and despite record-breaking corporate profits and low unemployment, middle-class families are seeing expenses rise while income stays the same. Too many Americans are living paycheck to paycheck, and getting nowhere despite great qualifications and working to the bone.
Mark’s commitment to working families includes fighting for strong unions and beating Prop A, making trade schools and community colleges accessible to everyone, raising the minimum wage, and ending the wasteful, harmful cycle of deep student debt for degrees that don’t pay.
Mark supports Medicare for All so that you always have access to healthcare, even if you lose your job or decide to start a business. Mark also believes in progressive taxation, and a rollback of Trump’s tax cuts for corporations and the super-rich.
Strong Unions – NO on Prop A
Unions are under attack across the country, and the fight is raging right here in Missouri as well. We must stand up and fight for working families by defeating Proposition A. Right to Work laws cause everyone’s wages to go down, while strong unions have been raising wages and benefits for union and non-union workers, ever since the right to organize was won over 80 years ago.
Mark is a proud former member of UFCW Local 655. He strongly opposes Right to Work legislation and was proud to join the grassroots effort to collect the 310,567 signatures to help block it. He believes workplace safety, wages, and affordable healthcare have all been improved through the advocacy and strength of labor unions.
Community Policing and Public Service
Mark is proud to be endorsed by the Missouri Fraternal Order of Police, the labor union representing 7,000 law enforcement officers across the state. We need to foster partnerships built on trust and understanding between officers and the communities they serve. Police and communities should feel like allies, not enemies.
That’s why Mark supports Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) and Byrne JAG programs, which have been supported by prosecutors, police unions, and reform activists. These programs provide officers with the equipment, training, and funding they need while giving citizens a voice in the process.
Through strategies like de-escalation and eliminating biases, we can repair and strengthen the relationship between our police and communities. We must return police to their essential function: serving the public.
No one who works full time should be living in poverty. Mark worked his first minimum wage job 20 years ago: the minimum wage was too low then, and it’s barely gone up since. Missouri’s working people deserve wages that keep up with the rate of inflation.
Those who have volunteered to serve our nation must be given access to the highest levels of care. We must prevent the privatization of the Veterans Administration and ensure successful transition into civilian employment.
Climate change is real, and we are already feeling its deadly effects. But it’s not enough for us to know what’s happening: we must work aggressively and decisively to confront corporate influence, pass strong, smart legislation, and create a sustainable society.
Investing in renewable energy sources is a great strategy for progress. There is bipartisan support, the projects will create good-paying jobs, and adoption of renewables decreases demand for dirty fossil fuels. Solar and wind already produce electricity at similar costs to coal: the government could absolutely do more to accelerate the transition.
We must also hold energy companies, and all industrial enterprises accountable for violations, and stop subjecting Missouri families to polluted air that’s causing asthma, cancer, and premature deaths. Missourians deserve a sustainable climate, good jobs, and clean air: Mark will stand up and fight to make it happen.
Despite constant misinformation that immigrants are a drag on public resources, the fact is that the U.S. is a nation of immigrants, and immigrants are more likely to start businesses, and less likely to commit crimes, than their non-immigrant neighbors.
The hatred and scapegoating must stop. Mark will stand up for people working to build a better life in the U.S., by working with both parties on a permanent fix for Dreamers, legislation that keeps families together, and comprehensive immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship.
Mark trusts women and believes abortion should be safe and legal. Birth control should be freely accessible to all Missouri women regardless of where they work or where they live. By including comprehensive sex education in our schools and access to reproductive care and contraception in our healthcare system, we can dramatically reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies.
Equality must include equal access to contraception, equal access to reproductive healthcare, and equal choice over when, how, and if someone chooses to start a family.
Mark is utterly steadfast and tireless in his support and full commitment to the LGBTQ community to ensure that all rights and opportunities are open to all no matter gender or sexual orientation. This includes protecting marriage, adoption, employment, housing, and military opportunities so that they remain open to all no matter who we love.
Racial inequity exists in our district and in our country. As uncomfortable as it might be to discuss, we have to confront inequality in our economic, educational, and criminal justice systems. We must advocate for policies that promote equal access to housing, education, healthcare, and jobs– and roll back the harmful policies that have historically created inequity.
By listening and learning, we can work together towards ensuring an even playing field for everyone.
The Trump tax cuts were an irresponsible transfer of wealth into the pockets of those who need it the least. Mark believes the people at the top are not paying their fair share, while middle-class families and the working poor are getting squeezed at every chance.
We need to protect funding for Social Security, Medicare, infrastructure, and education. Tax cuts for the wealthy don’t drive growth–a strong and secure middle class does.
End the Failed War on Drugs
50 years after the Nixon administration launched the War on Drugs, St. Louis County, Jefferson County, and St. Charles County are currently experiencing the highest number of drug-related deaths ever. The old solutions aren’t working, and the way to deal with the opioid epidemic is to treat this as the public health crisis that it is – with treatment, education, and pharmaceutical oversight – not incarceration.
Further, it’s time to federally decriminalize marijuana. States should be allowed to regulate and tax marijuana like alcohol, and this info from the independent Drug Policy Alliance illustrates some of the reasons why:
The criminalization of marijuana use disproportionately harms young people and people of color, sponsors massive levels of violence and corruption, and fails to curb youth access.
Legalizing and regulating marijuana will bring one of the nation’s largest cash crops under the rule of law. This will create jobs and economic opportunities in the formal economy instead of the illicit market.
Scarce law enforcement resources will be better used to ensure public safety while reducing corrections and court costs. State and local governments would acquire significant new sources of tax revenue from regulating marijuana sales.
Criminal Justice Reform
Our criminal justice system needs to be re-evaluated and improved at all levels: from policing practices, to sentencing, mass incarceration, private prisons, and how we reintegrate those who have paid their debt to society. These changes will save taxpayer dollars while strengthening our work force and economy.