Elizabeth Warren on Technology



Middle class built by investing in infrastructure & research

What would it take to help strengthen the middle class? There is one overriding idea: "Together we can."

America's middle class was built through investments in education, infrastructure, and research--and by making sure we all have a safety net. We need to strengthen those building blocks: Upgrade infrastructure--mass transit, energy, communications--to make it more attractive to build good, middle-class jobs here in America.

Source: The Two Income Trap, by Elizabeth Warren, p.xxii , Apr 12, 2016

End bulk collection of phone records

Warren would like to end the bulk-collection of phone records, which is authorized by Section 215 of the USA Patriot Act and set to expire June 1, 2015.

Even though Warren praised the Obama's administration's reforms of its surveillance apparatus earlier this year, she said they might not go far enough: "Congress must go further to protect the right to privacy, to end the NSA's dragnet surveillance of ordinary Americans, to make the intelligence community more transparent and accountable."

Source: Megan R. Wilson in TheHill.com weblog, "Clinton vs. Warren" , Aug 24, 2014

Would you prefer air travel without any FAA?

[When I enthused about our consumer protection agency, one Tea Party congressman said]: He didn't believe in government. Sure, I understood the basic point that government plays a limited role in a lot of people's lives and that government isn't the solution to every problem. But someday I hoped to get a chance to ask him: Would you rather fly in an airplane WITHOUT the Federal Aviation Administration checking air traffic control? Would you rather swallow a pill WITHOUT the Food and Drug Administration testing drug safety? Would you rather defend our nation WITHOUT a military and fight our fires WITHOUT our firefighters?

But I wasn't a member of Congress and he was. And the Tea Party had just helped dozens of people like him make it into public office, all loudly committed to unraveling just about everything the federal government had ever built.

Source: A Fighting Chance, by Elizabeth Warren, p.188 , Apr 22, 2014

Nothing pro-business about crumbling roads and bridges

The real battle isn't "pro-business vs. pro- government": the real battle is whether everyone pays or just the little guys. Giant companies hire armies of lobbyists to craft custom-made tax loopholes. And it's working: big corporations are paying an average tax of 12.6% of their profits. Less than half of the advertised 35% corporate rate. Meanwhile, middle-class families & small businesses are left to pick up the tab.

For businesses, the real battle isn't whether we need the government to invest in education & infrastructure & scientific research--businesses need all those investments. There's nothing pro-business about crumbling roads and bridges or a power grid that can't keep up. There's nothing pro-business about cutting back on scientific research at a time when our businesses need innovation more than ever. There's nothing pro-business about chopping education opportunities when workers need better training. To most people, it's pretty obvious that businesses need government investments.

Source: A Fighting Chance, by Elizabeth Warren, p.247-8 , Apr 22, 2014

Increase research for new industries in Massachusetts

Massachusetts is a world leader on the research that produces new products and new industries--and creates the demand for new technical jobs. Increasing our support for this kind of research helps Massachusetts and helps the country.
Source: 2012 Senate campaign website, elizabethwarren.com , Dec 10, 2011

Upgrade our aging infrastructure and invest in the future

We need to upgrade our aging roads, bridges, mass transit, and water and sewage lines--the basic pieces it takes to manufacture goods and to get them to market. My brother-in-law Steve operates a Gradall out of Plymouth. He tells me that he digs up water and sewage pipes in some parts of the state that were laid in the late 1800s and now are crumbling. We could be upgrading right now--creating good jobs and investing in our future.
Source: 2012 Senate campaign website, elizabethwarren.com , Dec 10, 2011

Push for spending on infrastructure

When pressed on what kind of formidable legislation she would actually pursue in the Senate, Warren's organization served up a snoozy list of the priorities that Democrats have been talking about for years: she will push for spending on infrastructure, education and renewable energy. She will work to strengthen labor unions and advocate for the reregulation of the big banks while easing regulations that make it difficult for small businesses and community banks to compete with giants.

These are fine notions; there's a reason they've long been the mainstays of an imagined liberal revolution. But they're also the ideas that cause Congress to immediately grind to a halt and that, when packaged in nonspecific campaign-speak, are quickly drained of meaning.

Source: By Rebecca Traister in New York Times , Nov 18, 2011

Voted YES on authorizing states to collect Internet sales taxes.

Congressional Summary: The Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013 authorizes each state to require all sellers with sales exceeding $1 million in the preceding calendar year to collect and remit sales and use taxes, but only if complying with the minimum simplification requirements relating to the administration of such taxes & audits.

Opponent's Argument for voting No (Cnet.com): Online retailers are objecting to S.743, saying it's unreasonable to expect small businesses to comply with the detailed--and sometimes conflicting--regulations of nearly 10,000 government tax collectors. S.743 caps years of lobbying by the National Retail Federation and the Retail Industry Leaders Association, which represent big box stores. President Obama also supports the bill.

Proponent's Argument for voting Yes: Sen. COLLINS. This bill rectifies a fundamental unfairness in our current system. Right now, Main Street businesses have to collect sales taxes on every transaction, but outbecause -of-state Internet sellers don't have to charge this tax, they enjoy a price advantage over the mom-and-pop businesses. This bill would allow States to collect sales taxes on Internet sales, thereby leveling the playing field with Main Street businesses. This bill does not authorize any new or higher tax, nor does it impose an Internet tax. It simply helps ensure that taxes already owed are paid.

Opponent's Argument for voting No: Sen. WYDEN: This bill takes a function that is now vested in government--State tax collection--and outsources that function to small online retailers. The proponents say it is not going to be hard for small businesses to handle this--via a lot of new computer software and the like. It is, in fact, not so simple. There are more than 5,000 taxing jurisdictions in our country. Some of them give very different treatment for products and services that are almost identical.

Reference: Marketplace Fairness Act; Bill S.743 ; vote number 13-SV113 on May 6, 2013

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Page last updated: Aug 18, 2016