THE ISSUES WE FACE

Woke ideology and anti-capitalist sentiment have taken over America's institutions, threatening our families and way of life. We must take bold action to safeguard our future.

A MESSAGE FROM ANDREW

When asked what kind of government the founding fathers had created, Benjamin Franklin’s response was: “A Republic, if you can keep it.” Many Americans are wondering if we can keep it as they are losing faith in our government, and for good reasons. I have come to the realization that, right now, we are missing all five of the requirements necessary to preserve our Constitutional Republic and Democracy.

First, a representative Republic demands an educated citizenry that shares some common values and common purpose. Our education system has failed us, producing a populace neither knowledgeable nor appreciative of our country’s founding values.

Second, the citizens of our Republic must be able and willing to have civilized debates and discussions about the important issues affecting the country. Cancel culture and a polarized media have silenced free speech and made debate on most issues nearly impossible.

Third, democracy requires that its citizens have faith in the fair elections of its political leaders. Many on both sides of the aisle have lost faith that elections reflect the will of the people.

Fourth, the decision makers within government must be accountable to the citizens. However, the majority of the laws and regulations to which we are subject are the work of an unaccountable administrative state.

Finally, our nation cannot survive without wise and virtuous leaders who are willing to put the concerns of their country and their constituents above their own, and who are capable of favoring long-term welfare over short-term interests. Our leadership class is made up mostly of career politicians hungry for power and money, and beholden to special interests.

I don’t pretend to possess every answer or know the solution to every issue. I cannot assure that every policy that I support will turn into legislative success, nor will every supporter or constituent agree with all of my positions.

Politicians make promises all the time they have no intention of keeping. I will keep mine. I promise honesty. I promise courage. I promise good judgment.  

THE ISSUES WE FACE

Schools are the primary way we pass down knowledge and values to the next generation. Our nation will not survive a generation of leadership more poorly educated than we are now, nor will we survive a generation of students taught to hate their own country and despise its history.

We must rid our schools of critical race theory, radical gender ideology and transformative social-emotional learning and stop the indoctrination in progressive activism. We must return our public schools to local control and break up the public school monopoly. Our school boards should be made up of concerned parents, not stooges of the teachers unions, which exist to raise money for the Democratic party and recruit our kids to be future Democrats.

We must also stop the gravy train of federal money that is funding woke ideology in our schools. We must reform the graduate schools of education, which are the training grounds of anti-capitalist and woke teachers. Finally, we must incorporate teaching on the dangers of socialism and communism into every child’s civics curriculum.  

Parents have the primary responsibility for the education, moral upbringing, wellbeing and healthcare of their children. These are natural rights and are non-negotiable. However, the rights of parents have recently been under attack by our own federal government and by our public school system, which seeks to usurp the role of parents, and to separate the parents from their children.

We must work to codify parental rights nationwide. We must fight for parents to have the right to choose where their children go to school, including the right to pursue alternatives to public education. Our tax contributions should follow the child to fund this purpose, without strings attached. We must fight to prevent any information relating to a child’s mental or physical health, well-being and education from being withheld from the parent. We must fight for the rights of parents to direct the moral and religious training of their children. We must fight for the rights of parents to make all healthcare decisions for their children. We must fight for parents to have the right to be involved as a full partner in all aspects of their child's relationship with the public school system, including the right to inspect the content of educational materials.  

While K-12 education is the most prominent front of our culture war, it is far from the only one. Woke ideology has infiltrated nearly all of society’s key institutions, including our corporations, media, healthcare and legal communities, arts and cultural institutions, our military, and our government.

Woke ideology is far more than a belief in systemic oppression and equity. It is a fundamental rejection of the core American principles of free speech, free markets, individual rights, meritocracy, objectivity, colorblindness, and the purpose of democracy as a defense of liberty. These principles are the basis for America’s founding, and for the freedom and prosperity we take for granted. The vast majority of Americans of all political persuasions - Republican, Democrat and Independent - support these ideals and values, and I will not rest until our society’s institutions once again uphold them.

Winning the culture war will not be easy. First, we must do better job of educating Americans as to what is at stake. We must fix the incentive structures that reward woke behavior and penalize merit and excellence. We must put an end to affirmative action, and to the culture of excessive safetyism and “CYA” mentality that together have institutionalized the paying of protection money to woke causes. We must stop the federal government from funding anti-American and anti-capitalist ideals, and end the DEI and ESG rackets. Finally, we must restore a culture of and appreciation for free speech. 

For too long, government’s micromanagement of our economy has inverted incentives, subsidized our elites at the expense of the average American, and inhibited growth. This must change.

Americans have been led to believe that failing capitalism has led to the extreme income inequality that we have experienced in recent years. This is false. It is the monetary policies of our Federal Reserve that are the root cause of most of our society’s ailments, as I recently wrote. True capitalism has brought prosperity unprecedented in human history, including soaring life expectancies, plummeting infant mortality, vastly improved quality of life, and incredible technological innovation. Marxism, communism and socialism, on the other hand, have brought nothing but poverty, destruction and misery. We must remind Americans of these facts.

More specifically, we must stop running trillion dollar deficits, which have caused ruinous inflation. We must end the cycle of the Federal Reserve blowing serial asset bubbles, and then bailing out Wall Street when those bubbles threaten to burst. We must reduce the monopolistic power of our largest corporations, especially in the technology sector, bring back a manufacturing base to America, and eliminate oppressive regulation that stifles small business and innovation. 

We must advocate for effective policing and address the significant increase in crime we are now experiencing in this country. We must support our law enforcement agencies, as Florida has so successfully done. We must return to prosecuting the criminals who make our streets unsafe and contribute to the deterioration of our neighborhoods. We must get the homeless off of the streets and subways in our cities and find a long-term solution for the mental health issues that contribute to homelessness. We risk the destruction of American cities if we do not address these quality of life issues.

One of the few areas where there is some bipartisan agreement is that Big Tech has too much power over our lives. Social media is a disaster for human interaction, especially for children. Big Tech has fostered enormous polarization, decimated traditional journalism, fueled cancel culture, and fostered censorship. There are no easy or agreed upon answers to these problems. Some suggest antitrust initiatives, others the repeal of Section 230. We cannot put the Internet genie back in the bottle, nor do we want to emulate China in its control over the Internet. However, we must have debate on this issue and explore meaningful solutions.

The war in Ukraine has served as a rude awakening to both Europe and the U.S. that extreme anti-energy policies have downsides. Climate change is an issue, but it must be addressed sensibly without significant damage to our economy and our national security. We must be able to have grown-up conversations regarding climate change, energy policies, nuclear power, smart regulation and proper incentives. We cannot permit the extreme left to shut down industries that are critical to our economy and national security and that provide countless jobs. Nor can we allow the cult of climate alarmism to poison the minds of our children, and make them terrified about the future.

The world is in a dangerous place and our position in the world is weaker than at any time in recent memory. We have adversaries such as China, Russia and Iran that represent a very real danger to our interests and to those of our allies. We must strengthen our deterrence capabilities, as well as our alliances. Since the end of the cold war, our foreign policy has been incoherent and inconsistent. We must recognize that we have returned to an age of realpolitik and we need wise political leaders who are willing to make difficult decisions to support our national interests.

No ally is more important to us than Israel. We may not agree with every one of Israel’s domestic policies or every decision of its political leaders, but we must always remember that we have no better friend in the world and we must remind them that they have no better friend than the United States. The Abraham Accords represent the most important Middle East policy since the founding of the State of Israel and we must work to strengthen and expand that treaty. Israel and the United States share a common bond founded on Judeo-Christian values, and together we are defenders of western civilization. That must never change.

Few issues bring out as many emotions as abortion and life, and for many Americans this is a matter of faith. To many, this is also a matter of federalism, a viewpoint that I share. I personally believe the Supreme Court was correct in its decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization to return the issue of abortion to the states, and to the democratic process. Some states will adopt more restrictive abortion policies, other states less restrictive policies. The will of the people and the legislative process should decide contentious issues, not the courts.

The events of the past three years, which saw the greatest suppression of our liberties and freedoms by our federal and many state governments, in our country’s history due to covid policies, has reinforced for me the vital importance of our Constitutional right to bear arms. Moreover, the rising levels of violent criminal activity that we are witnessing, especially in progressive-run cities around the country, has reinforced the fact that we have every right to protect ourselves, our loved ones and our property.

Like every sane and warmhearted American, I too am appalled by mass shootings carried out by mentally ill individuals, especially in our nation’s schools. We must be able to have an adult conversation about how to protect our children and our fellow citizens from such violent acts. Any measures must be robustly supported by rigorous analysis, by local public debate and by the democratic process. What we cannot do is allow the media or the far-left to hijack these horrific events to push a progressive, anti-safety and anti-American agenda. 

In contrast to much of the country, and especially to states and cities run by progressives, Florida, in general, and Palm Beach County, specifically, are booming. Life here is normal, vibrant, and happy. Restaurants are opening, cultural institutions are expanding, and businesses are moving in. The economy is thriving, and the population is growing as more and more people move away from cities and states decimated by progressive mismanagement.

I strongly believe that West Palm Beach and its surrounding area have the opportunity to become America’s financial capital as financial service companies continue to exit deteriorating New York City. The future here is bright. We must continue to have business-friendly policies, invest in infrastructure and transportation, and ensure that there is sufficient affordable housing and expansive job creation for a growing population.  

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Andrew Gutmann for Congress