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Meet Democrat Rudy Soto

The people of Idaho deserve to have a fair shot when it comes to access to health care, education, and affordable housing. Too many from our communities are being priced out of everyday living. That’s why Rudy Soto is running for Congress: to stand up for the future of each and every person across Idaho’s First District.

Rudy Soto’s Priorities

Health Care

Rudy believes health care should be a human right.

Even after Idaho voters expanded Medicaid to 90,000 people, state lawmakers are fighting tooth and nail to gut existing coverage and let down hardworking Idahoans. Meanwhile, almost 28 million people in the U.S. are uninsured, and the average American with insurance pays $3,414 to cover the costs every year. No one should have to spend that much just to lead a healthy life.

The 1st Congressional District needs a determined leader like Rudy who will work to guarantee a pathway to affordable health care coverage for everyone. This is a personal fight for Rudy: His father died early of cancer after losing his health insurance. He is dedicated to ensuring no one loses a loved one because of a lack of health coverage again.

Education

Investing in education is investing in the futures of all Idahoans.

Every public school in Idaho should have enough teachers, classrooms, and learning opportunities to serve the needs of all of its students. In Congress, Rudy will work to ensure that K-12 schools, career and technical education programs, and colleges and universities receive adequate support and resources to prepare students for the workforce.

With more than 6,300 Idaho STEM jobs left unfilled in 2018 alone, Rudy will advocate for funding to train students in these skill areas at the K-12 and postgraduate level. There’s no reason to leave behind hundreds of millions of dollars in unclaimed wages.

Sufficient funding and resources to provide educational opportunities are critical to advancing the economy of the 1st District and creating a brighter future for all Idahoans.

Education helped bring Rudy to where he is today, and he wants every Idahoan to have the chance to learn and grow in a supportive atmosphere.

Environment

Our environment needs protecting.

Idaho is home to sprawling mountains, cascading waterfalls, and breathtaking public lands that must be protected for current and future generations. Rudy is devoted to making sure the federal government doesn’t open up more fragile and sacred lands to harmful drilling and mining. He will also fight to hold corporations responsible for the air and water pollution they cause. We should never have to worry about the safety of the air we breathe and the water we drink.

Rudy is intent on having the rest of the country look to Idaho’s 1st Congressional District as an example of a balanced, development-oriented and aspiring green economy: Boise has committed to converting to 100% renewable energy by 2035. With Boise expected to reap $610 million in benefits, a transition to green energy across the district can clearly contribute to robust economic growth as well.

Infrastructure

Idaho is growing — our infrastructure needs to, too.

In a fast-growing state like Idaho, it’s vital to have quality, updated infrastructure to support current and future residents. In particular, Rudy will advocate for more funding to improve roads, bridges, our public transit systems, and schools, as well as infrastructure for drinking water and wastewater. 

These improvements will enhance Idahoans’ daily lives and help Idaho businesses keep thriving locally and nationally.

Rural and Reservation Communities

Rudy will be a strong voice for Idaho’s communities.

 Hundreds of thousands of people live in rural Idaho. Even as the population grows in cities, Rudy knows that Idaho’s roots in rural communities cannot be forgotten.

Rudy will advocate for investment in rural health care, education, businesses, and broadband internet. He will listen to the voices of rural residents and work toward bringing federal resources home.

Idaho’s 1st District is home to Native American reservations of four federally recognized tribes: the Shoshone-Paiute, the Coeur d’Alene, the Kootenai, and the Nez Perce. Nationwide, Native Americans face severe health and economic challenges.

As a member of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes of the Fort Hall Reservation, Rudy has a personal connection to Idaho’s Native American communities. Currently, only four out of 535 sitting Members of Congress are of Native ancestry, and Rudy hopes to join them as the fifth. 

In the U.S. House of Representatives, Rudy will push for legislation that protects Native American women and girls from violence, upholds tribal treaty rights to land, resources, sovereignty, and improves health and education outcomes in Native communities.  

Elders and Peoples with Disabilities

In Congress, Rudy will be an advocate for the elderly and people with disabilities.

Idaho is growing and aging. Rudy is committed to ensuring that our elderly relatives, friends, and neighbors are healthy and safe. We must take care of our senior citizens so that they receive necessary medical treatment and caregiving services.

About 11 percent of working-age Idahoans live with disabilities. Many individuals with disabilities lack access to accessible and affordable transportation and housing. People living with disabilities who want to work and participate in programs that assist them in pursuing their potential will have a strong advocate in Rudy. 

Rudy opposes indiscriminate cuts to programs like Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance. He knows that Idahoans try their hardest to provide for their family members, and gutting these programs will harm the people who need support the most. 

Affordable Housing

No one should have to work multiple jobs just to afford a place to live.

Working people are being priced out of affordable housing in Idaho. In Congress, Rudy will work on real solutions to end the affordable housing crisis.

Housing costs don’t match the incomes of hardworking Idahoans. To afford the average price of a two-bedroom home in Idaho, renters have to earn $15.47 an hour. But the minimum wage is just $7.25. Rudy will work to make sure everyone earns a fair wage. No one should be forced to shell out more than 30% of their income just to have a place to live. Idahoans should be able to put back some of their hard-earned money into putting food on the table and securing a more stable future.

Right now, Idahoans applying for housing assistance can face waitlists or rejection. Rudy will advocate to increase funding for federal rental assistance programs, like public housing and housing choice vouchers, to make sure Idahoans have the help they need to afford a place to live.

Immigration Reform

It’s time for comprehensive immigration reform.

As the son of a Mexican immigrant who worked multiple jobs to support his family, Rudy has experienced firsthand the value that immigrants bring to Idaho. In fact, immigrants are vital to Idaho’s economy: 1 in 12 workers in Idaho are immigrants.

Rudy believes in creating more pathways to legalization and citizenship for undocumented immigrants. Idaho’s undocumented immigrants contributed to the economy with $28.6 million in state and local taxes in 2014 — and with legal status, they could pay even more. It’s only fair that people who put their hard-earned dollars into paying taxes have the opportunity to become legal residents and U.S. citizens. 

Rudy is also dedicated to supporting humane policies that strengthen and secure our borders to ensure safety for all Americans.

Agriculture

Idaho’s agriculture system should work for farmers and workers alike.

Rudy knows firsthand how important agriculture is to Idaho’s economy: His father worked in the industry for decades.

Rudy will invoke Congress’ constitutional power to make sure the U.S. doesn’t enter trade wars that harm Idaho’s farms and dairies. Some farmers have lost thousands of dollars a day from the recent trade wars. Our farmers should never have to pay collateral for petty political disputes handled through Twitter diplomacy. 

Rudy also supports legislation like the bipartisan Farm Workforce Modernization Act to ensure a strong, skilled, and legal agricultural labor force. The bill would provide agriculture workers with a clear pathway to legal status, simplify the H-2A process, and require implementation of the E-Verify system.

Veterans

Veterans deserve to be treated with the dignity and honor of their service.

Rudy is deeply proud — and humbled — to have served in the U.S. Army. While his experience has been positive, not all veterans receive fair treatment. The Department of Veterans Affairs has a long history of disease exposure, lengthy patient wait times, and corruption. Rudy will prioritize passing legislation that holds the VA accountable and ensures quality health care services.

Rudy will push for programs and funding that create pathways for veterans transitioning out of the service. He will support those pursuing their potential by expanding avenues to entrepreneurship and strengthening access to resources for veteran-owned small businesses. 

Rudy will also focus on measures to prevent veteran homelessness, provide educational opportunities, and support veterans’ families. It’s important to honor our veterans. He will stand up for student veterans who are preyed on by predatory private student loan practices. No American who has answered the call to serve his or her country should be mistreated or taken for granted.

Criminal Justice Reform

It’s time to reform the criminal justice system.

Idaho has the 13th-highest incarceration rate in the nation. 490 of every 100,000 Idahoans are in prison, which is far higher than in neighboring states.

That means that Idaho’s prisons and jails are overcrowded and understaffed. Resources are stretched thin to support the prison population. Between 1992 and 2017, state spending for corrections grew by 204 percent.

The criminal justice system must be overhauled. Rudy supports commonsense reforms that would eliminate mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent drug crimes. He seeks to strengthen and expand drug courts as well as alternatives to incarceration whenever sensible and suitable because Rudy recognizes that rehabilitation, education, mental health care, and future employment opportunities are essential to prevent future criminal offenses.

Rudy also supports the legalization of hemp and decriminalization of cannabis. Cannabis should be available as medical treatment to those who need it, and people 21 and older who are found to possess a personal amount of cannabis should not be put in jail for using cannabis recreationally. This is a fiscally responsible policy position that will save taxpayer dollars and ensure law enforcement resources are focused on the pursuit of violent crimes, property crimes, and keeping our communities safe.

Additionally, Idaho farmers should be allowed to grow hemp as an agricultural product. By not allowing hemp to be grown agriculturally, the Gem State is losing out on excessive amounts of commerce and tax revenue that could help all Idahoans laboring to prosper and advance the economy.

Rudy acknowledges that African-Americans, Latino and Hispanic-Americans, and Native Americans are overrepresented in the prison population. As a representative of Idaho, he will strive for an equitable legal system that will be fair and just to all people. 

Inmates are fellow citizens of the United States. We are responsible for their human rights regardless of the crimes they have committed.

Health Care

Rudy believes health care should be a human right.

Even after Idaho voters expanded Medicaid to 90,000 people, state lawmakers are fighting tooth and nail to gut existing coverage and let down hardworking Idahoans. Meanwhile, almost 28 million people in the U.S. are uninsured, and the average American with insurance pays $3,414 to cover the costs every year. No one should have to spend that much just to lead a healthy life.

The 1st Congressional District needs a determined leader like Rudy who will work to guarantee a pathway to affordable health care coverage for everyone. This is a personal fight for Rudy: His father died early of cancer after losing his health insurance. He is dedicated to ensuring no one loses a loved one because of a lack of health coverage again.

Affordable Housing

No one should have to work multiple jobs just to afford a place to live.

Working people are being priced out of affordable housing in Idaho. In Congress, Rudy will work on real solutions to end the affordable housing crisis.

Housing costs don’t match the incomes of hardworking Idahoans. To afford the average price of a two-bedroom home in Idaho, renters have to earn $15.47 an hour. But the minimum wage is just $7.25. Rudy will work to make sure everyone earns a fair wage. No one should be forced to shell out more than 30% of their income just to have a place to live. Idahoans should be able to put back some of their hard-earned money into putting food on the table and securing a more stable future.

Right now, Idahoans applying for housing assistance can face waitlists or rejection. Rudy will advocate to increase funding for federal rental assistance programs, like public housing and housing choice vouchers, to make sure Idahoans have the help they need to afford a place to live.

Education

Investing in education is investing in the futures of all Idahoans.

Every public school in Idaho should have enough teachers, classrooms, and learning opportunities to serve the needs of all of its students. In Congress, Rudy will work to ensure that K-12 schools, career and technical education programs, and colleges and universities receive adequate support and resources to prepare students for the workforce. 

With more than 6,300 Idaho STEM jobs left unfilled in 2018 alone, Rudy will advocate for funding to train students in these skill areas at the K-12 and postgraduate level. There’s no reason to leave behind hundreds of millions of dollars in unclaimed wages.

Sufficient funding and resources to provide educational opportunities are critical to advancing the economy of the 1st District and creating a brighter future for all Idahoans. 

 Education helped bring Rudy to where he is today, and he wants every Idahoan to have the chance to learn and grow in a supportive atmosphere.

Immigration

It’s time for comprehensive immigration reform.

As the son of a Mexican immigrant who worked multiple jobs to support his family, Rudy has experienced firsthand the value that immigrants bring to Idaho. In fact, immigrants are vital to Idaho’s economy: 1 in 12 workers in Idaho are immigrants.

Rudy believes in creating more pathways to legalization and citizenship for undocumented immigrants. Idaho’s undocumented immigrants contributed to the economy with $28.6 million in state and local taxes in 2014 — and with legal status, they could pay even more. It’s only fair that people who put their hard-earned dollars into paying taxes have the opportunity to become legal residents and U.S. citizens. 

Rudy is also dedicated to supporting humane policies that strengthen and secure our borders to ensure safety for all Americans.

Environment

Our environment needs protecting.

Idaho is home to sprawling mountains, cascading waterfalls, and breathtaking public lands that must be protected for current and future generations. Rudy is devoted to making sure the federal government doesn’t open up more fragile and sacred lands to harmful drilling and mining. He will also fight to hold corporations responsible for the air and water pollution they cause. We should never have to worry about the safety of the air we breathe and the water we drink.

Rudy is intent on having the rest of the country look to Idaho’s 1st Congressional District as an example of a balanced, development-oriented and aspiring green economy: Boise has committed to converting to 100% renewable energy by 2035. With Boise expected to reap $610 million in benefits, a transition to green energy across the district can clearly contribute to robust economic growth as well.

Agriculture

Idaho’s agriculture system should work for farmers and workers alike.

Rudy knows firsthand how important agriculture is to Idaho’s economy: His father worked in the industry for decades.

Rudy will invoke Congress’ constitutional power to make sure the U.S. doesn’t enter trade wars that harm Idaho’s farms and dairies. Some farmers have lost thousands of dollars a day from the recent trade wars. Our farmers should never have to pay collateral for petty political disputes handled through Twitter diplomacy. 

Rudy also supports legislation like the bipartisan Farm Workforce Modernization Act to ensure a strong, skilled, and legal agricultural labor force. The bill would provide agriculture workers with a clear pathway to legal status, simplify the H-2A process, and require implementation of the E-Verify system.

Infrastructure

Idaho is growing — our infrastructure needs to, too.

In a fast-growing state like Idaho, it’s vital to have quality, updated infrastructure to support current and future residents. In particular, Rudy will advocate for more funding to improve roads, bridges, our public transit systems, and schools, as well as infrastructure for drinking water and wastewater. 

These improvements will enhance Idahoans’ daily lives and help Idaho businesses keep thriving locally and nationally.

Veterans

Veterans deserve to be treated with the dignity and honor of their service.

Rudy is deeply proud — and humbled — to have served in the U.S. Army. While his experience has been positive, not all veterans receive fair treatment. The Department of Veterans Affairs has a long history of disease exposure, lengthy patient wait times, and corruption. Rudy will prioritize passing legislation that holds the VA accountable and ensures quality health care services.

Rudy will push for programs and funding that create pathways for veterans transitioning out of the service. He will support those pursuing their potential by expanding avenues to entrepreneurship and strengthening access to resources for veteran-owned small businesses. 

Rudy will also focus on measures to prevent veteran homelessness, provide educational opportunities, and support veterans’ families. It’s important to honor our veterans. He will stand up for student veterans who are preyed on by predatory private student loan practices. No American who has answered the call to serve his or her country should be mistreated or taken for granted.

 

Rural and Reservation Communities

Rudy will be a strong voice for Idaho’s communities. 

Hundreds of thousands of people live in rural Idaho. Even as the population grows in cities, Rudy knows that Idaho’s roots in rural communities cannot be forgotten.

Rudy will advocate for investment in rural health care, education, businesses, and broadband internet. He will listen to the voices of rural residents and work toward bringing federal resources home.

Idaho’s 1st District is home to Native American reservations of four federally recognized tribes: the Shoshone-Paiute, the Coeur d’Alene, the Kootenai, and the Nez Perce. Nationwide, Native Americans face severe health and economic challenges.

As a member of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes of the Fort Hall Reservation, Rudy has a personal connection to Idaho’s Native American communities. Currently, only four out of 535 sitting Members of Congress are of Native ancestry, and Rudy hopes to join them as the fifth.

In the U.S. House of Representatives, Rudy will push for legislation that protects Native American women and girls from violence, upholds tribal treaty rights to land, resources, sovereignty, and improves health and education outcomes in Native communities.

Criminal Justice Reform

It’s time to reform the criminal justice system.

Idaho has the 13th-highest incarceration rate in the nation. 490 of every 100,000 Idahoans are in prison, which is far higher than in neighboring states.

That means that Idaho’s prisons and jails are overcrowded and understaffed. Resources are stretched thin to support the prison population. Between 1992 and 2017, state spending for corrections grew by 204 percent.

The criminal justice system must be overhauled. Rudy supports commonsense reforms that would eliminate mandatory minimum sentences for nonviolent drug crimes. He seeks to strengthen and expand drug courts as well as alternatives to incarceration whenever sensible and suitable because Rudy recognizes that rehabilitation, education, mental health care, and future employment opportunities are essential to prevent future criminal offenses. 

Rudy also supports the legalization of hemp and decriminalization of cannabis. Cannabis should be available as medical treatment to those who need it, and people 21 and older who are found to possess a personal amount of cannabis should not be put in jail for using cannabis recreationally. This is a fiscally responsible policy position that will save taxpayer dollars and ensure law enforcement resources are focused on the pursuit of violent crimes, property crimes, and keeping our communities safe.

Additionally, Idaho farmers should be allowed to grow hemp as an agricultural product. By not allowing hemp to be grown agriculturally, the Gem State is losing out on excessive amounts of commerce and tax revenue that could help all Idahoans laboring to prosper and advance the economy. 

Rudy acknowledges that African-Americans, Latino and Hispanic-Americans, and Native Americans are overrepresented in the prison population. As a representative of Idaho, he will strive for an equitable legal system that will be fair and just to all people.  

Inmates are fellow citizens of the United States. We are responsible for their human rights regardless of the crimes they have committed.  

Elders and Peoples with Disabilities

In Congress, Rudy will be an advocate for the elderly and people with disabilities.

Idaho is growing and aging. Rudy is committed to ensuring that our elderly relatives, friends, and neighbors are healthy and safe. We must take care of our senior citizens so that they receive necessary medical treatment and caregiving services.

About 11 percent of working-age Idahoans live with disabilities. Many individuals with disabilities lack access to accessible and affordable transportation and housing. People living with disabilities who want to work and participate in programs that assist them in pursuing their potential will have a strong advocate in Rudy. 

Rudy opposes indiscriminate cuts to programs like Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security, and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance. He knows that Idahoans try their hardest to provide for their family members, and gutting these programs will harm the people who need support the most.  

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P.O. Box 74
Nampa, ID 83653

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PAID FOR BY RUDY FOR CONGRESS