Democratic Presidential candidate Alan Howe visited Lancaster last week. (Photo by Tara Giles) (click for larger version)
April 03, 2019LANCASTER — It's campaign season, and more and more presidential hopefuls are traveling to northern New Hampshire to gather support. Democratic candidate Alan Howe of Pennsylvania stopped by the Granite Grind in Lancaster on March 27 where he met with a small crowd of about ten people to discuss the upcoming race.
Howe introduced himself as a retired United States Air Force Senior Master Sergeant, who served for 24 years. Since his retirement in 2005 he has dedicated much of his time to education and volunteer work. Howe is married and says he enjoys fly fishing, hunting and rides a motorcycle.
He spoke with residents regarding his concerns about the threats our nation is facing.
"Right now ,we face four especially grave threats, a treasonous president, climate change, rising personal and institutional racism and dangerously high levels of income inequality. I am determined to confront and defeat each of these threats," he said.
In regards to Donald Trump, Howe pointed out that the Constitution defines treason as adhering to and providing aid and comfort to enemies of the United States.
"Each time Donald Trump puts Russian interests ahead of our interests, he is committing treason. The founding fathers made treason the first grounds for impeachment. They expected future congresses to defend our nation by impeaching and removing a threat posed by a treasonous executive. Congress must now act to defend us," said Howe.
The candidate feels that racism is back on the rise, "Hate crimes, including murder are on the rise. The shootings of unarmed black men by police have become a recurring national tragedy." According to Howe, race and religion are key factors in the Trump Administration's immigration policy in violation of US law and American values.
"We must treat domestic hate groups under US law the same way we treat terrorist groups. We must supervise investigations of police shootings, and remove racial and religions conditions on immigration," explained Howe.
As for income inequality, Howe seeks to defeat the "standard Republican fare of huge tax cuts for the wealthy and pain and suffering for the rest of us before they destroy our economic future," as he stated. Howe is looking to fix Social Security taxes to end the high rates for workers and low rates for the wealthy. Howe feels that strong communities combined create a strong nation.
"We are a thriving nation of immigrants. Immigration has made us the strongest nation on Earth. Our immigration policies should reflect that," Howe said, adding "We need sensible immigration reform that continues to grow our economy and strengthen our nation. Reducing immigration threatens to reduce our economic growth as vital jobs go unfilled. Welcoming immigrants is pro-growth."
Health care was a topic of conversation that seemed to take up a good portion of time.
To that, Howe said, "The goal of any health care policy should be to cover everyone for the least cost while avoiding harm to the national economy. We must have a public-private system that resembles our education system and provides care for everyone."
Howe went on to say, "Health care is a fundamental right. We can add a public option to our national exchanges, fully resource the Veterans Administration and then determine if it can add first-responders, then lower the age thresh hold for Medicare, then increase the income threshold for Medicaid until everyone is covered."
Howe's goal is to raise enough funding to be allowed on the debate stage.
Of the meeting, Lancaster Democratic Committee member Charlie Cotton said, "I believe we are made stronger as Democrats when more folks participate. I'm also pleased that Howe has been to Coos County twice."
Owners of the Granite Grind along with members of Lancaster's Democratic Committee have not expressed support for any candidate in the race and simply would like to welcome all candidates to the North Country.