Every Mainer has the right to affordable medical, reproductive and mental health care.
Ross believes that all Mainers — including seniors, women, and families facing financial hardship — should have access to affordable health care. He will fight hard in Washington to strengthen the Affordable Care Act by reducing the cost of prescription drugs, ensuring affordable care for Mainers with pre-existing conditions, and by supporting a “Medicare for All Who Want It” option.
Ross will ensure that Maine receives fair Medicaid funding from the federal government so that struggling Mainers don’t have to choose between health care and putting food on the table. And he will stand up to any politician who thinks the government has a right to dictate how a woman makes her own medical decisions, including her reproductive options.
Ross will prioritize mental health and addiction issues and work hard to put them on equal footing with physical health. He knows we must stop stigmatizing these health issues if we want Mainers to get all the care they need to be healthy and productive citizens.
Every Mainer has the right to safe roads and bridges, and high-speed Internet.
Maine isn’t receiving the federal assistance necessary to keep our roads properly paved and our bridges standing tall. One of Ross’s first priorities as our Senator will be to fix this, and also build the infrastructure of the future: high speed internet for all. While connectivity in some of our cities is strong, far too many Mainers don’t have affordable, high-speed internet connections, with rural Mainers hit particularly hard. This keeps Maine behind the rest of the nation in employment, education and business opportunities.
Ross knows that without reliable and affordable high-speed internet, Maine will fall further and further behind. Ross wrote the first comprehensive plan in the nation to increase high-speed internet coverage when he worked in California, giving millions more people internet access, including in rural areas. Ross will use his expertise and experience to ensure that every Mainer and every Maine business has access to this infrastructure of the future.
Every Mainer has the right to benefit from the global economy.
Maine currently has one of the lowest rates of economic growth in the country, and is ranked as one of the worst states in the country for business. That’s not surprising, since political leaders in Augusta only recently started drafting Maine’s first economic development plan in 20 years.
Ross will fight for federal resources to support a comprehensive economic development plan that helps all Mainers.
We have to recognize two realities: First, Maine isn’t just competing against New Hampshire and Vermont for jobs and economic growth — we’re competing against the rest of the world. Second, we need to build an economy based on the jobs of the future, which includes focusing on green technology and telecommuting jobs. With Maine’s unmatched quality of life, and a plan for broadband across the state, Maine will be able to attract entrepreneurs, innovators and new businesses, resulting in more good-paying jobs for Mainers.
Maine prospers only when our hard-working men and women — our teachers, tradesmen and laborers — have jobs with good pay and benefits. No one should have to balance multiple jobs to pay the rent and meet basic expenses.
Young Mainers have the right to a great education and multiple pathways to success.
When Ross finished law school, he had massive student loans that limited his career and life options. This is the reality for too many Mainers. In the past ten years, the state’s student loan debt doubled to over $6 billion. If Maine is to prosper, we need to help our talented young people stay in Maine, as well as attract other talented young people by addressing the student debt crisis.
We must also focus on expanding career technical education and creating “multiple pathways for success,” which means pushing Washington for more federal resources for community colleges and skills training to ensure that our students are prepared for the economy of the future, with digital skills and digital citizenship programs.
Ross believes in the importance of national and community service and was Senator Edward Kennedy’s chief advisor on these issues. He will introduce legislation that reinvigorates these programs nationwide. This will build stronger communities, and will also help address Maine’s infrastructure, healthcare, and education needs, especially in rural Maine.
Maine seniors have the right to dignity and adequate care.
Maine is the oldest state in the country, and the needs of seniors are overwhelming the capacity of our healthcare facilities and practitioners. Yet, just as we need to be providing better care for older Mainers, we’re experiencing a worker shortage. Nursing homes are shutting down and homecare programs are struggling to find workers. As a result, elder care often falls to family members who are not equipped with the skills or financial resources to provide it.
Ross will fight to make sure Maine is at the forefront of this issue nationwide. Legislators in Augusta and Washington can’t continue ignoring the problem. As our Senator, Ross will ensure the state is prepared to meet the needs of older Mainers and their families by addressing the shortage of elder care workers, supporting family-based caregivers in the home, and fighting the chronic underfunding of MaineCare by Washington.
Maine veterans have the right to our respect, quality health care, and our support.
As a percentage of the population, Maine has nearly double the number of veterans compared to the national average. Ross’s own father has struggled at times to receive the level of care he needs from Veterans Administration facilities in Maine. Ross believes we must honor the sacrifice of all veterans by improving the mental and physical healthcare we owe them. We must reduce wait times and focus on ensuring veterans in rural areas have access to quality healthcare. With veteran suicide rates on the rise in Maine, Ross supports legislation that prioritizes suicide prevention, provides targeted support to at-risk veterans, and establishes mental health parity for our soldiers and veterans. Finally, we must prioritize federally funded VA programs that ensure our soldiers are prepared to enter the workforce when they come home from their service.
Every Mainer has a right to clean water, clean air, and to a government committed to fighting climate change.
The effects of climate change are already being felt in the Gulf of Maine, which is warming faster than over 99% of the rest of the planet’s oceans, impacting Maine’s fishing, lobstering and tourism industries. Ross believes government policies must be based on science. He will prioritize reversing the Trump administration’s efforts to gut federal clean air and water regulations, and other environmental protections.
Ross also looks at the current threat of climate change as an opportunity for Maine to lead the nation in developing innovative new solutions, by incentivizing renewable energy production and “green tech” jobs in Maine. This will increase the number of good-paying jobs while also preserving the natural beauty of our state and our planet.