June 16, 2018
AN OPEN LETTER TO
Mr. Bob Viney
406 Walnut Lane
Mason, Ohio 45040
Thank you for your letter to me of June 5, 2018. I am the Democratic Candidate for the United States House of Representatives for the Kentucky Fifth District, having won the Democratic primary May 22, 2018.
My background is somewhat similar to yours. I am a member of the Viet Nam Veterans of America—although I never served in-country; a former Destroyer Escort officer and member of the D.E. Sailors Association, and a Cold War veteran. I worked with Submariners while I was an Assistant Underwater Range Officer at the U.S. Navy Underwater Range in St. Croix, U.S.V.I. After I resigned my Commission with the Navy, I became a lawyer, practicing in Georgia, Florida, and Kentucky.
Country above Party sounds good, and I know no one who would run under the banner of “Party above Country.”
I agree with you that we need an “ACA Repair approach” and to keep the ACA in its improved condition, rather than terminating it.
I favor a pro-growth and pro-jobs economic policy. I come from a family of economists. My Father, Prof. James M. Stepp, Sr. taught Agricultural Economics for approx. 33 years at Clemson University in South Carolina. He and his brother Hubert F. Stepp both held Ph.D. degrees in economics from the University of Virginia. When I attended Clemson University for four years, I majored in Industrial Management with a Minor in Economics.
I favor more access for all Americans to lower cost health care. This is served by the ACA, but it needs amending to overcome defects in the program.
Concerning Medicare, I propose and would support, an amendment to the Medicare Act over a period of two years, reducing the age of eligibility for Medicare by two years. That should have more public support than a sudden addition of eighty per cent of Americans to the Medicare program.
I favor increasing everyone’s income for the long term. We don’t need class warfare here, we need to move everyone willing to work forward to a better future.
The Federal Government should spend more on American Education, whether in the form of scholarships, fellowships, or loans. A nation’s spending on education determines sixty per cent of a nation’s personal gross domestic product. Thus spending on education this year affects standards of living in America for the next fifty years.
The Roman Empire, around 382 A.D. (or A.C.E. if you prefer) conferred Roman citizenship on all the residents of the Roman Empire. We don’t expect America to be forced into such a choice, but I agree that your statement that “immigration must be based on the needs of the country AND humanitarian needs of keeping families together”. If the Army can be picky about their entrance of new members, so can U.S. Immigration. We need to get younger, stronger, more healthy and better immigrants, all for a stronger America. Keeping families together should be part of the American policy on immigration. We should start having Congressional Hearings in January 2019, concerning the present defects in our current immigration program, and how best to improve it. America should not be a dumping ground for the world’s unemployable, but we should give preference to people who appear capable of holding a job in our changing economy. Preference in immigration should be statutorily given to people who have been legal residents of the United States, and also those who have served as members of the United States’ Armed Forces.
Thank you for your instructive letter concerning what should be the issues of the current national political campaign. Hopefully the two parties of America will be more cooperative with each other after the 2018 elections.
/s/ Kenneth S. Stepp
former Lt. (Junior Grade) U.S. Navy