Issues

 

  • Why I’m running for the United States Senate
    • I love Vermont. I love this country. And I believe we deserve better in Washington. Career politicians in Washington, D.C. and the big special interest money that props them up are causing gridlock, partisanship, and an uncertain American future. Congress will run more smoothly when we elect officials who have not been bought and paid for. Legislation and action based on reason, not on a special interest’s lobbyist’s draft, or concern of the Senator’s career, is what made this country great. My election will turn our country back in that direction.

 

  • Campaign Finance
    • If we are to ever have meaningful campaign finance reform in this country, our Senators must be elected in clean campaigns. By that I mean campaigns free of special interest money. True leadership means walking the talk. That’s why I have taken a clean campaign pledge. I will not accept any special interest or PAC money.
    • I invited my opponent, a man with 42 years of incumbency on his side, to take the same pledge and join me in using this campaigning to raise money for Vermont Charities. He refused, as he rails about the evils of Citizens United. A Supreme Court decision does not excuse Senators from their duty to lead by example.

 

  • Term Limits
    • If I am fortunate enough to be elected, I vow to serve no more than two terms in the United States Senate before allowing another Vermonter to serve.
    • I believe that the Founding Fathers designed our Congress to be a house of public servants—citizens who would serve for a period of time, and then return home to live under the laws that they made. Let’s not just talk about term limits—let’s get something done.
    • Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Too many years in Washington aren’t good for politicians or their constituents.

 

  • Social Justice
    • If you believe one thing about me, please let it be that Scott Milne believes all people are created equal. I am dedicated to taking hate out of our society at the root. That can best be done by reverting to a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. Not of the people with power, by the people with money, and for the people with money and power.
    • I believe wholeheartedly in the rights of gay and lesbian Americans. My opponent voted for DOMA. My kids and I fought alongside my mother—Marion Milne—during the civil unions battle here in Vermont. I believe it is an insult to those who have given so much to this cause that Senator Leahy proclaims himself a longtime champion of gay rights. His voting record does not support this claim.
    • I wholeheartedly believe in and support equal pay for equal work.
    • I believe that racism is evil. Societies everywhere need to do better. Our government has played a terrible role in creating these problems. Making amends is essential and important.
    • I believe that the 1994 Crime Bill has wreaked havoc across the country and accelerated racial divides. Pat Leahy voted for this bill that forced states to keep prisoners behind bars longer, and removed education grants for inmates, among other things. We need to address the criminal justice crisis in this country with common-sense legislation, free of special interests’ input.
    • My social justice advocacy in the United States Senate will be entirely based on my conscience. Not on special interests. Not on polling.

 

  • Economic Justice
    • Vermonters have proven time and again our capacity for innovation. In today’s global economy our innovative and entrepreneurial spirit will serve us well. I believe that the government needs to create an environment that nurtures job growth and stability.
    • Career politicians in Washington, D.C. and the special interest money that props them up have created instability and unease. With Senators threatening to shut down the government every time they don’t get their way—as Senator Leahy did recently when he couldn’t get his EB5 “godchild” off voters radar—it’s no wonder folks on main street are hesitant to go into business and bring on employees. Who knows what curve ball these crony career politicians have up their sleeves next? This question brings uncertainty and suppresses our economy. Washington should inspire confidence in the business climate by functioning smoothly—meeting deadlines and reliably producing a sound product.
    • Education is key to ensuring economic justice, and a foundation of the American Dream. I believe that the more locally school decisions can be made, the better. Parents and teachers, not distant federal bureaucrats, know what our kids need. But, we need to ensure that all American students are receiving the foundation they need to be successful. It is a tragedy that our society has become one in which it is getting easier to sit home, and more difficult to get ahead.
      • I believe that the federal student loan program is flawed. The federal government makes money from these loans. This is the one debt a person can’t shake through bankruptcy, absent a very difficult-to-make showing of undue hardship.  And the free-flowing funds from the federal government allow the cost of higher education to skyrocket. Our young people essentially sign a mortgage to get something our parents paid for with summer jobs. Hardworking young Americans deserve better.
    • I believe that a great society takes care of its members who cannot care for themselves. With economic stability and growth, we will be able to do that at home, and play an important role around the world in building prosperity.

 

  • Balancing the Budget and Alleviating National Debt
    • The most fundamental responsibility of Congress is to pass balanced budgets with responsible government spending. As a small businessperson, I appreciate the work that goes into balancing a budget. I am proud to say that I led our company through troubled waters—the disruption wrought by the internet on the travel industry, 9/11, and the Great Recession—without cutting jobs. I was able to do that because I’m not beholden to shareholders and I think long-term. I have families that depend on me for a paycheck, and I make decisions based on my responsibility to them. In the Senate, I’ll make my decisions based on my responsibility to you—not lobbyists for big money and power.
    • Businesses need to grow to survive. If my company sold things below cost, or made promises we couldn’t keep, our company would easily growall the way to insolvency! While our $19 trillion national debt mounts my opponent runs for re-election on the grounds that he brings home the bacon. While he’s been in Washington, D.C. the national debt has multiplied 40 fold. Almost one double of 1974’s debt for every year he’s been in office!
    • When United States Senators reach across the aisle to compromise and get things done, the days of shutting down the government and stonewalling will be behind us. When members of both parties work to make the President successful, we can begin to put this divisive age of partisanship behind us. When that happens, we can work together to put our nation back on solid financial ground, to balance the budget, and to create a prosperous environment for workers, businesses and investors.

 

  • The Opiate Epidemic
    • Heroin and prescription pharmaceutical addiction is ravaging our nation. How did we get here? It is too easy in this country to get a prescription for an opiate. And to get that prescription refilled, while a person’s addiction takes root.
    • The pharmaceutical industry has spent roughly $1 billion lobbying people like my opponent. Do we believe the industry didn’t profit from that lobbying? The maker of OxyContin, for example, made $2.4 billion from opioid sales last year alone. Last year, while the epidemic raged, Congress didn’t stop this pharma giant from pumping poison into our communities and making 1.6 times as much as the entire state of Vermont will spend out of the general fund this year.
    • I believe an important step in stopping the epidemic is electing politicians who refuse to take such donations.
    • We also need to support community law enforcement, and treatment solutions that are not being funded by legislation written by pharma’s lobbyists.

 

  • Immigration
    • I am a descendent of immigrants. I believe that it is vital to our future as a global leader that America strives to be the most desirable place to live in the world. Legal immigrants deserve the chance to join us. Xenophobia has no place in twenty-first century America.
    • That’s why we need to have a working immigration policy. Over half of Vermonters weren’t even born when my opponent was elected in 1974. Illegal immigrants in America have increased by over 1000% since Pat Leahy moved to Virginia and joined the U.S. Senate. He is the senior member of a broken system.
    • We need to secure our borders.
    • We need to provide a registration system and a path to citizenship. It isn’t practical to say that we’re going to send 11.5 million people back to countries in varying states of stability across the globe. In many places in our country, the economy would collapse if we did so.
    • When there’s new blood in the Senate, beholden only to their constituents, meaningful immigration reform is possible.

 

  • Climate Change
    • I believe that climate change is real. I believe that human beings contribute to climate change. I believe that protecting our natural resources is one of the great challenges of our time. It is incumbent upon twenty-first century leaders to look at the facts and to craft legislation based on those facts and good science, and leave the special interests’ agendas and polarized political dogma out.
    • I believe that an environmentally responsible policy can be consistent with a wise and fiscally prudent policy. And putting an end to the billions of dollars spent on lobbying for career politicians re-elections by energy companies is a good first step..
    • We do not have to choose between working towards energy independence and preserving our environment. We can do both. We must look to diversify our energy base, and grow sources of affordable, renewable energy. We want to be smart and work to use traditional energy sources as cleanly and efficiently as possible.
    • As Vermonters, we know how vitally important protecting our environment is. But we have also been burdened by the heavy energy costs that come along with an environmental policy based on ideology and propping up businesses with strong lobbyists.
    • I pledge to work towards a cleaner energy future in the Senate. I also pledge to work against rising energy costs and policies that frustrate economic development.

 

  • National Security
    • I do not believe in scaremongering or politicizing our national security. I believe that Dwight Eisenhower was right to warn of the rise of the military-industrial-congressional complex.
    • National Security decisions should be based entirely on the facts and sound judgment. Not what a lobbyist has to say, and not what serves partisan interests and power broking. National security decisions must be made practically.
    • When an American administration is obstructed, or trips over itself, the ramifications are felt around the world. We must consistently ensure our democratic allies that we stand by them.
    • We cannot support regimes with systemic disregard for human rights, unless they enlist our support to be better.
    • I believe that it is the duty of every Senator and Congressman to work to the best of their ability to make whoever occupies the oval office successful—both at home and abroad.