Elect Phil Phelps Democrat Michigan State Senate District 32
About PhilWorking for youEndorsements

WORKING FOR YOU

Jobs and the Economy

Michigan’s economy took a big hit when the auto industry began shutting down automotive factories. However, Michiganders are resilient. Phil will rebuild Michigan's economy by investing in small businesses, technology, clean energy, and science and math education. Phil believes all people deserve to earn a livable wage for a hard day's work; And like he fought against the terrible Right-to- Work laws, he will continue to fight to bring more good paying jobs to our state.

Civil Rights

In Michigan the median income of African American households is about 60% the median income of non-Hispanic white households, the same gap that existed in 1975. Cities like Flint that have populations that are majority minority are constantly harmed by politicians that fail to listen to their concerns. Our legislature should work to end discrimination whether it is based on gender, race, age, sexual orientation and if elected as your State Senator you can count on me to be a strong advocate for your civil rights.

Women

Women on average earn only 80% of what men make, a number that only widens for minority women. All people should be making equal pay for equal work, no matter their gender or race. The Michigan Legislature in recent years has taken women's healthcare choices away from them. Women should be able to make their own health decisions with their doctors and their families, not politicians.

Open Government

Government transparency is critically important to our democracy. We pay our taxes and vote for legislators to represent our interests, so we deserve to know how they spend our public dollars. Information and communication should be readily available to the citizens so they can hold their leaders accountable. Michigan is constantly ranked at the bottom in the United States for transparency because the Governor and the Legislature are not subject to Freedom of Information laws. This is unacceptable and people deserve to know what is happening behind closed doors in our government. I have been working on changes to our laws that would make our government more effective and accountable to everyone. These changes have been supported by a wide range of advocacy groups from both the left and right of the political spectrum, but the current establishment continues to fight against these changes. I will need your help to accomplished this. Together we can build a government that’s truly accountable to everyone in Michigan.

Agriculture

Agriculture has been a pillar of Michigan’s economy and has strong roots in the 32 nd Senate District. I grew up in a rural farming town and am no stranger to the hard work that farmers and their families must do to keep their farms competitive. I have grown to have a deep respect of those in the agricultural industry for their willingness to try new techniques and technology in their day to day operations. Over the past few decades, farmers have dramatically increased their production and have learned to use far less fertilizer while doing it. This is good for our economy and great for our environment! I currently sit on the House Committee on Agriculture and have witnessed what advances in technology can do to protect our environment while helping farmers stay profitable. That’s why I am a strong supporter of the Right to Farm Act and an advocate for the Farmland Preservation Act.

Education

Michigan’s education system used to be the best in the nation, but now we have fallen behind. Over the past 8 years our state has given tax breaks away to various businesses and used your local school funds to pay for it. A recent study that was authorized by the state showed that Michigan drastically underfunds our schools and that is not acceptable! Our states constitution guarantees each child in Michigan a high quality education and our current leaders are either unable to or unwilling to deliver that to our children. We need to ensure that our schools have the funding to put the best technology in every classroom so students are prepared for college and for the jobs of tomorrow. We also need to make sure that students have the option to learn vocational skills. Attending a college or university might not be the best choice for every student and there are many good paying jobs available in the skilled trades.

Retirement Security

Our senior citizens have worked for years to save money and plan for their retirement. Now that their working years are over, the legislature has forced changes to those planned retirements. By taxing their pensions our government is taking more than money, they're taking security away from a population who is least able to protect themselves.

Voting Rights

Although all Americans have the right to vote, not everyone has easy access to the voting booth. Our voting system is still hard on many populations, such as the elderly, disabled persons, hourly employees, and the young. Some voters in Michigan waited as many as 4 hours to cast their vote in the last general election, this is simply unacceptable. Voting is a right and should be easier and more accessible to the public.

Energy

Our dependence on foreign oil is not only expensive at the gas pump, but it steals money from our local and national economy. By investing in domestic oil and gas along with alternative energies we not only help our economy and our wallets, we can curb the pollution we release into our atmosphere. I worked for an energy technology company that specialized in integrating new technology into our nation’s power grid and I have sat on the House Energy and Technology committee. I have firsthand knowledge about the challenges we face when it comes to our energy needs. I also know that some communities have great concern about certain developments that are proposed in their back yards. I am a firm believer that those at the local level should determine what’s best for their own community and I will continue to fight for your right to decide what happens in your local environment. Together, we can make smart decisions that lower our energy costs and make our state more attractive to new industries that can bring new high paying jobs.

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