FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Lewis Unveils Rural Revitalization Plan

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Lewis Unveils Rural Revitalization Plan

LUVERNE, Minn. — In conjunction with a rural healthcare roundtable at Sanford Medical Center in Luverne on Wednesday, U.S. Senate candidate Jason Lewis released his rural revitalization plan today. 

“For too long, our rural communities have been ignored by career politicians and bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. and the Twin Cities, like Senator Tina Smith. It’s time we acknowledge, reward, and work with local communities so that all Minnesotans enjoy the opportunities they deserve,” Lewis said. 

“Just yesterday I met with doctors and healthcare professionals from Sanford in Luverne, Rock County. They are concerned as I am that ‘Medicare for All’ and single-payer proposals being pushed by radicals in the Democratic Party will ultimately lead to a reduction of access to rural healthcare, if not an outright closure of many facilities,” Lewis added. 

“Whether it’s healthcare, infrastructure, agriculture, or creating energy, mining and timber jobs, I am committed to getting Greater Minnesota moving again. The best way to do that is to get Washington’s heavy-handed regulations out of the way–a rising tide lifts all boats. Whether it’s providing for your family, saving for retirement, or running a business—you can’t do it without economic growth. It’s time we get started and help the communities ignored by Senator Tina Smith and the Democratic Party for far too long,” Lewis concluded.

Lewis’ plan can be broken down into four key categories for policy improvements:

Agriculture

With the passage of the USMCA, the U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement, and Phase One of the China negotiations, brighter skies lie ahead for Minnesota farmers. While in Congress, Lewis voted for the Farm Bill with food stamp reform to encourage more employment and job training. Lewis also supported a long-sought repeal of the 2015 Waters of the United States Rule (WOTUS) by voting numerous times to abandon this bureaucratic micromanagement of even the smallest streams, farm ditches and creek beds.

Jobs and the Economy

PolyMet Mining and Twin Metals continue to face one legal and regulatory obstacle after another, forestalling an economic renaissance on the Minnesota Iron Range. Responsible mining for our copper, nickel, platinum, cobalt and titanium deposits—some of the largest in the world—have been estimated to add $5.9 billion to Minnesota’s economy along with as many as 15,000 jobs, direct and indirect. Unlike Senator Tina Smith, Jason Lewis will fight for new, good-paying mining jobs in Northern Minnesota.

Infrastructure

Lewis believes it is crucial to finally get the Enbridge Line 3 replacement line built. There are 8,600 jobs on the ‘line’ with this $2 billion private investment. That means over $19 million in new property tax revenue that could fund roads, bridges and rural broadband. Senator Tina Smith has repeatedly refused to come out in support of the project and all the jobs and revenue that come with it.  

Additionally, Lewis’ work in the 115th congress on the Transportation Committee helping to pass things like a crucial FAA Bill gives him the experience necessary to get things done for Minnesota. 

Health

Unlike Senator Tina Smith and the radical Democratic Party, Lewis’ rural healthcare plan focuses on lowering premiums, guaranteeing coverage, and finally addressing drug costs. Lewis addressed the specifics of this plan in a healthcare roundtable in Luverne on Wednesday. The current proposals by Democrats—whether it’s $32 trillion “Medicare for All” or another single-payer system—would upend Minnesota’s rural healthcare system and lead to a reduction in access in areas that rely on local healthcare facilities. 

Lewis’ plan includes establishing invisible pools for those with pre-existing conditions, continuing the Trump administration’s healthcare reform efforts by making small business “association pools” and inexpensive shorter-term plans permanent, and encouraging quicker development of generic and biosimilar drugs by ending the pharmaceutical practice of “evergreening” expiring patents. 

Lewis also wants to expand on his bipartisan bill to establish an advisory committee on opioids to address the harmful effects of opioid abuse in the workplace, and to see what actions employers can take to help affected employees. While at the same time, making certain important pain-relieving drugs are still accessible for those who really need them. 

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