tv Howard Dean Presidential Campaign Announcement CSPAN February 16, 2015 2:30pm-2:55pm EST
actually means dirtier air; his healthy forests proposal actually means cutting down trees. he proposed to let his oil industry friends drill in the alaska national wildlife refuge. i led and won the fight to stop him. and we won that fight. in a kerry administration, we will recommit america to one of the greatest unfinished challenges of our time and of all time -- to save our environment, to protect our oceans, to reverse the tide of global warming. we will not let polluters rewrite our laws in return for campaign contributions. we will make them and not
taxpayers pay the bill to clean up toxic waste. and we will disprove the lie that protecting the environment can only come at the expense of jobs. the truth is that prosperity doesn't come from pollution. the most powerful economic engine in this nation has always been opportunity -- the ability for anyone from any start in life, to get a good education, to go to work, to start a business, to take an idea and change the world. but george bush's only economic plan is lavish tax breaks for those at the top. he has taken us down the road of diminished opportunity, not greater opportunity. under the bush administration, in less than three years, three million jobs have been lost. that is an astonishing failure -- and it is an outrage.
as a senator, i was proud to work with president bill clinton to turn around the last bush downturn. and i know the people of this country have the courage to do what's right for our economy. if i am president, i will rollback the bush tax breaks for the wealthy so we can invest in education, health care, and the skills of our workers. some in my own party want to get rid of all tax cuts -- including those for working families. that would mean that a family of four -- with two parents working hard on the job and at home -- would have to pay $2,000 more a year in taxes.
that's wrong. the last time i looked, the problem was not the middle class with too much money. we need to be on the side of america's middle class, and i've proposed a tax cut for them because it's the right way to strengthen our economy. let me put it plainly: if americans aren't working, america's not working. so my economic plan sets this goal -- to get back george bush's three million jobs in my first 500 days as president. and to cut the budget deficit in
half in the first four years. but what we face today -- and what we must change -- is not simply a failure of policy. today at the center of power, we have a radical ethic that ratifies and glorifies a creed of greed. once, a great republican president named theodore roosevelt took on those who abused their wealth and power; today's republican president invites them in for secret meetings, sells out our environment, tolerates their abuses and lets them evade taxes by moving their headquarters to an offshore shelter that is nothing more than a post office
box or a mail drop. that must stop. dick cheney's old company halliburton has 58 offshore tax havens. the bush administration's response is to hand halliburton a seven billion dollar no-bid contract. my response as president will be: no more lavish government-funded life support for favored corporations . no more tax allowances for bonuses of over a million dollars for ceos who have done nothing to earn them.
no more tax breaks that help companies move american jobs overseas. a tax code that once ran 14 pages now takes up 17,000 pages, filled with twists and turns and customized loopholes. everyone in america knows it is not fair, and if i am president we're going to scour that tax code and make it simple and fair once and for all. instead of tax breaks for the wealthiest and subsidies for special interests, and instead of photo opportunities with children as backdrops, let's give real meaning to the words "leave no child behind."
it's time to give our schools the resources and our teachers the respect they deserve -- and give every child in america the best possible start in life. and let's recognize that for all our wealth, we will be a lesser nation if we continue to be the only advanced society that does not secure access to health care for all our people. this is not an abstract issue to me. early this year, i was diagnosed with prostate cancer. i was cured -- because as a
united states senator, i was lucky to have some of the best medical care in the world. millions of americans are not so lucky -- and i'm determined to change that. i propose to give every american access to the same health coverage as a senator or member of congress. and i say to you today: your family's health is just as important as any politician's in washington. we must make it so as the policy of this country. the courage to do what's right means standing up for civil
rights and equal rights - and ending discrimination against gay men and lesbians. all americans deserve to be free from this discrimination and to enjoy the full measure of america's rights. and it means understanding that our civil liberties are not an obstacle to defending this nation, but are one of the very things we seek to defend. george bush has sought to undo guarantees enshrined in the constitution -- not by amending it but by subverting it with his judicial nominees. as president, i will only appoint supreme court justices who will uphold a woman's right to choose.
a just america demands a supreme court that honors our constitution -- and an attorney general whose name isn't john ashcroft. and courage means standing up for gun safety, not retreating from the issue out of political fear or trying to have it both ways. i'm a hunter and i believe in the second amendment but i've never gone hunting with an ak-47.
our party will never be the choice of the nra -- and i'm not looking to be the candidate of the nra. today, i ask all of you to enlist in a mission that is bigger than any of us. for each of us has extra days -- not just for ourselves but to share. and i hope to be the president who asks all of us to serve -- because in the end, the ideals of the nation will not be realized by presidential decree, but by the national service that can only be measured in countless acts of individual commitment to do what's right for america - every day, in every community -- in many different ways -- from helping a child learn to read to giving
senior citizens the chance to give more of their talents and strength. and the force of all those extra days joined together can open a new era of concern for others and not just ourselves, of community and not division, of opportunity for the many and not just the few. i believe the courage of americans can change this country. i believe the idealism of americans can match our power to our principles - so that this nation will advance the best hopes of the world. i believe the genius of americans can make us energy independent. the resolve of americans can break the grip of special
interests and bring back jobs and economic justice. i believe the vision of americans can save our environment, raise up our schools, and finally open up health care to all. the conscience of americans can guard our fundamental liberties and preserve them for generations to come. your courage can make sure we do what's right for our country. your courage can give america back its future, its strength and its soul. i am honored to join you in this endeavor as a candidate for president of the united states. thank you and god bless you all.
this announcement is almost 25 minutes. >> while the mistakes i make in this campaign will be my own will people see good in me people see principles, people see the values, family, and community, and it is because of you, the community of vermont that stands with me today. today i announce that i am running for president of the united states of america.
i speak not only for my candidacy. i speak for a new american century and a new generation of americans -- both young people and the young at heart. we seek the great restoration of american values and the restoration of our nation's traditional purpose in the world. this is a campaign to unite and empower people everywhere. it is a call to every american regardless of party, to join together in common purpose and for the common good to save and restore all that it means to be an american. over a year ago i began to travel the country in the usual way one does when seeking the presidency. i believed that, by running for president, i could raise the issues of health care for every american and the need to focus
on early childhood development. i wanted to bring those issues to the forefront of the national debate. and i wanted to balance the budget to bring financial stability and jobs back to america. most importantly, i have wanted my party to stand up for what we believe in again. but something changed along the way as i listened to americans around this country. on my first trip to iowa i heard people speak of a profound fear and distrust of multi-national corporations.
from new hampshire to texas i met americans doubting the words of our leaders and our government in washington. every where i go people are asking fundamental questions: who can we trust? is the media reporting the truth? what is happening to our country? the americans i have met love their country. they believe deeply in its promise, our values and our principles. but they know something is wrong and they want to take action. they want to do something to right our path. but they feel washington isn't listening. and as individuals, they lack the power to change the course those in washington have put us on. what they know is that somehow 7 trillion dollars of our country's wealth disappeared. nearly 1 in 10 retired people have had to return to the workforce because they have lost
their pensions. young people are returning to live at home after graduating because they cannot find work. companies are leaving the country to avoid paying taxes, or to avoid paying people livable wages. and corporations are doing this with the support of the government and a political process in washington that they rent -- if not own. this was the fear that james madison and thomas jefferson spoke of -- the fear that economic power would one day try to seize political power. theodore roosevelt said it best, "every special interest is entitled to justice full, fair and complete....but not one is entitled to a vote in congress to a voice on the bench or to representation in any public office."
today, our nation is in crisis. at home, this crisis manifests itself in this president's destruction of the idea of community. this president pushes forward an agenda and policies which divide us. he advocates economic polices which beggar the middle class and raise property taxes so that income taxes may be cut for those who ran enron. he divides us by race by using the word quota, which appeals to the worst in us by instilling fear that people of color might take our jobs or our places in the nation's best universities.
he divides us by gender by attacking a woman's right to make her own health care decisions. and even by attacking young women's right to have the same athletic opportunities that young men do. we can do better than that. he divides us by sexual orientation by supporting senators who have slandered gay americans, and he appeals once again to the worst instincts within us, instead of that which is good in all americans. the tax cuts that are the radicals' weapon are not about tax cuts for working people. they are not even about tax cuts for millionaires. instead, the tax cuts are
designed to destroy social security, medicare, our public schools and our public services through starvation and privatization. our president and too many in washington are giving away our future so that we pass to our children not a flickering flame of freedom but the chain of insurmountable debt. we can do better than this. no parent would do this and america must not do this. and so for me the long journey of a presidential campaign has begun with the people i have met affecting me far more than any affect i may have had on them. and because of that, the reasons why i seek the presidency have changed.
this campaign is about more than issue differences on health care, tax cuts, national security, jobs, the environment and our economy. it is about something as important as our children. it's about who we are as americans. here are the words of john winthrop: "we shall be as one. we must delight in each other, make other's conditions our own; rejoice together, mourn together, labor and suffer together, always living before our eyes our commission and community in our work." it is that ideal, the ideal of the american community, that we seek to restore.