Indivisible Primary Survey Full Responses

1) Do you commit to co-sponsoring SB 1129, The Medicare for All Act?

JAMES MACKLER: Access to health care is a right. We need our next senator to fix the ACA, expand Medicaid, reduce prescription drug prices, and put an end to rural hospital closures across Tennessee.

2) Do you commit to co-sponsoring SR 59, The Green New Deal?

JAMES MACKLER: The Department of Defense calls climate change one of the greatest risks to our national security, and I agree. It’s climate change deniers who say we have to choose between protecting the environment or creating jobs – it’s a false choice. We can do both. But we can’t solve big problems with one party dedicated to denying the existence of the problem.

3) Do you support eliminating the filibuster?

JAMES MACKLER: The U.S. Senate is broken, and the misuse of the filibuster is part of that. It should be fixed or ended – because we cannot allow another situation where Mitch McConnell can sit on hundreds of bills needed to make progress simply because he can.

4) Do you oppose the use of private, for-profit prisons or companies that directly benefit from larger prison populations?

JAMES MACKLER: There should never be a profit motive for incarcerating people.

5) Do you support full repeal of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act?

JAMES MACKLER: We need tax reform that’s fair, simple, and drives economic growth for small businesses and entrepreneurs. Audio discussion with Nashville Scene Podcast on this topic (31:19-32:25).

6) Do you support a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the US?

JAMES MACKLER: Our immigration system is broken and we desperately need comprehensive immigration reform to include this and other priorities.

7) Do you commit to co-sponsoring SB 42 – Universal Background Checks?

JAMES MACKLER: Like 86% of Tennesseans, I support expanding background checks to include all gun sales. I’m proud that Moms Demand Action has named me a gun sense candidate and that Giffords PAC has endorsed my campaign for Tennessee’s open U.S. Senate seat.

8) Do you support SB 1083, which would study the possibility of reparations for descendants of slaves?

JAMES MACKLER: I will cosponsor Senator Booker’s bill creating a commission looking into reparations. (Video clip discussing this topic in June 2020 [9:49-9:54]).

9) Do you support term limits for Supreme Court Justices, Congressmen and Senators?

JAMES MACKLER: I support term limits and pledge to serve two terms in the U.S. Senate.

10) Do you oppose efforts to cut federal funding for Planned Parenthood?

JAMES MACKLER: I support Planned Parenthood because access to health care is a right and access to women’s health care is a right. From attempting to strip Tennesseans of health care in the midst of a pandemic to reviving and passing unconstitutional draconian legislation to ban abortion before many women even know they’re pregnant, Tennessee’s elected officials are
more focused on fulfilling campaign promises than they are on serving Tennessee women and protecting their Constitutional rights. I’m proud that Planned Parenthood Action Fund has endorsed my campaign for Tennessee’s open U.S. Senate seat.

11) Do you support Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to choose?

JAMES MACKLER: Women who cannot make health care decisions with their doctors are not free, and that’s not who we are as Americans. I’ve fought to defend our individual rights in the courtroom and on the battlefield and will continue protecting them in the U.S. Senate. I’m
proud that NARAL Pro-Choice America has endorsed my campaign for Tennessee’s open U.S. Senate seat

12) Do you support legislation that would prevent the separation of undocumented children from their parents?

JAMES MACKLER: Families belong together.

13) Will you openly condemn sexism, racism, and discriminatory language and actions made by national and state leaders, even during a general election campaign?

JAMES MACKLER: I’ll stand up to anyone when their language or actions are racist, sexist, or discriminatory, as I did when Bill Hagerty marked the start of Ramadan with such a comment, and when Manny Sethi aired a racist ad during a Democratic presidential debate.

14) Do you support full reauthorization of the Voting Rights Act?

JAMES MACKLER: I’ll embrace all measures that allow and encourage Tennesseans to register, vote, cast their ballots safely, and ensure all votes are counted fairly. I’m proud that Let America Vote has endorsed my Senate campaign for Tennessee’s open seat.

15) Do you support a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United?

JAMES MACKLER: Our individual voices are being drown out by floods of corporate cash, and we have to change the way campaigns are funded and increase transparency. Change starts with me which is why I’m not taking any corporate PAC money and I’m proud that End Citizens United has endorsed my Senate campaign for Tennessee’s open seat.

16) Do you support federal legislation re-establishing the 2015 open internet order, which includes the FCC’s authority to treat ISPs as utilities?

JAMES MACKLER: Small businesses and consumers benefit from Net Neutrality and ending it hurts them both.

17) Do you support raising the federal minimum wage to $15/hour and eliminating the special low tipped minimum wage of $2.13/hour?

JAMES MACKLER: Every Tennessean working a full-time job should be able to meet the basic needs of raising a family, but today that is not the case. The current $7.25/hour minimum wage, set a decade ago, is not enough as it’s just $290/week and $15,080 a year before taxes. What happens is folks stuck in dead-end and low-wage jobs are forced to get two or three of them to get by – and there’s no time left in the day or the week for anything else. No time for family, no time to learn new skills or earn a degree, and no time to find a better paying job. This is the reality for too many in our state as Tennessee ranks near the top nationwide in percentage of jobs that are paid minimum wage. Increasing minimum wage to $15/hour increases annual pay to $31,200 a year before taxes. While that is an improvement, what we really need are investments in areas we know will create good-paying jobs now and into the future: infrastructure, education, and clean energy.

18) Do you commit to endorsing whoever wins the TN US Senate Democratic Primary in August?

JAMES MACKLER: We can’t lose sight of what we’re fighting for in this election. Our choice this year is to send another Marsha Blackburn to the Senate – and that’s exactly what Bill Hagerty has promised to be – or we can make a change. I’m an outsider, a veteran, a person of faith – I’m a different kind of candidate. My campaign is, and has always been, about meeting
Tennesseans where they live and listening to what they need and are not getting from Washington. I’m proud that grassroots donors in all 95 counties have heard my message of service and invested in my campaign and sending better leadership to Washington. We’ll win this open U.S. Senate seat when everyone wanting change joins the team to make it happen.