Allow Candidates with Special Needs the Use of Campaign Funds to Pay for Caregivers

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America is a stronger nation when all backgrounds of people are represented in our nation’s political offices. It is time to ensure candidates of all backgrounds can seek public office regardless of the challenges and barriers they may face. No special needs should prevent candidates from running for or holding public office in this country. People with disabilities and other special needs that require a caregiver to accompany them on campaign activities should be able to use campaign funds to pay for their care on the campaign trail. This is because people with physical challenges deserve just as much chance and the opportunity to run for and hold public office as people without these challenges. It was made law by the Federal Election Commission in May 2018, that a mother running for congress could use campaign funds to pay for childcare expenses while she is on the campaign trail. This opens more opportunities for candidates with children and allows more women to run for office (Bloomberg, 2018) If we want more diversity of people representing us in public office, it is also time for people with special needs to be included in that process. For people facing physical challenges, it can be a barrier to run for office due to the specialized care they might require on the campaign trail that they normally might not while at home. Therefore, caregivers on the campaign trail should not be considered a personal expense, but instead a campaign expense during campaign activities. People with disabilities deserve a voice on the campaign trail now more than ever.

I am Alexandria. I was born with complete vision loss due to prematurity. While my challenge of having vision loss is to me something to make me stronger and better able to serve others, I believe in helping brake barriers for others that want the chance and opportunity to run for public office that may face more difficult obstacles than I do. Therefore, I believe this change to the current legislation would open pathways for those with physical challenges to run for public office. Too many times people with these challenges are left out of the political process due to barriers society places upon them. It’s not right and its time to change that. Thank you for your support and consideration.

 



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