STANDING UP FOR WHAT MATTERS
Standing firm on important issues is important to State Representative Jim Lucas.
As a Marine and elected official, I have sworn oaths to support, protect and defend both the U.S. Constitution and our State Constitution. Both Constitutions are plainly written and mean what they say. To me, the words “shall” and “shall not” mean what they say, not what they’ve been interpreted to mean.
Our right to keep and bear arms is arguably our most important right, as it is the one that recognizes our Natural Right to self defense, but protects all of our other rights as well. Since my first day as a state representative, I established a very respected reputation as an outspoken advocate to not only protect our gun rights, but to expand them to their Constitutional intentions. This is a reputation that I have fought hard to earn and will continue to fight even harder to keep, and my accomplishments for fighting for our gun rights speaks for itself.
I am a proud Life Member of the National Rifle Association, Life Member of Gun Owners of America, Life Member of the Indiana State Rifle and Pistol Association and a Member of the 2nd Amendment Foundation.
In my first year as state representative, I requested and was granted a seat on the House Education Committee and continue to serve on that Committee today. Education has always been very important to me, and as an 18 year small business owner, I understand how critical it is to have not just an educated workforce, but an educated society as well. My knowledge and experience as a small business owner provides me with a unique perspective on getting things done. If a small business owner can’t implement solutions to a problem, they go out of business and this kind of real life experience is invaluable in this area.
Public education receives over half of our state budget, over 40% of our property tax dollars, $1 billion+ in federal dollars and millions more in local funding each year. If we count the investment we make in higher education, our state dedicates 2/3 of our state budget to education. This level of financial support demands efficient use of taxpayer dollars, with an eye on results.
Indiana is blessed with an incredible group of outstanding educational professionals, with 98% of our teachers rated as Effective or Highly Effective and we continue to strive to provide resources and guidance to those entrusted with tomorrow’s leaders!
Indiana, along with the rest of the nation, is experiencing an opioid epidemic that has taken thousands of lives, wrecked countless homes and is stretching our states limited resources very thin. Medical cannabis has been proven to help with drug addiction and of the 29 states that have decriminalized medical cannabis, they have seen an average 25% decrease in opioid deaths, with some states experiencing a 50% decrease.
The American Legion, at both the National and State level, along with other veterans groups have made legalizing medical cannabis one of their top priorities. Besides being proven to help with opioid addiction, medical cannabis has also shown many other tremendous benefits; from treating PTSD to treating seizures to helping with chronic pain. Research from credible universities, scientists, and the dozens of other states have shown the multitude of benefits of this plant, but without many of the crippling side effects, toxicity or addictive qualities of many of the drugs being prescribed today.
I have made decriminalizing medical cannabis one of my top priorities for the next legislative session and am working with dozens of individuals and groups to implement legislation that will save thousands of Hoosier lives, improve the quality of life for countless others and provide an invaluable tool for those seeking help with their addictions.
Limited Responsible Government
One of my favorite statements regarding the Rule of Law is the first paragraph in the Preamble of the Bill of Rights: “The Conventions of a number of the States having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best insure the beneficent ends of its institution …”
This short but incredibly powerful sentence sums up perfectly the very reasons for the limitations placed on government, along with the recognition of our individual and states rights. I believe the solutions to the majority of our issues today lie in these protections and it is incumbent that we return to these guiding principles.