| The third in the series of posts collecting links to information and articles about the Democratic candidates for the US House....
His Campaign website.
Bio: (from his campaign website) Born and raised in Billings, Rankin graduated from Billings West High in 1963 and subsequently earned a bachelor's degree at Rocky Mountain and Eastern Montana colleges. After school, he spent a year in India with the Peace Corps, after which he was drafted and served in Vietnam as a medic, earning honors. After returning home, Rankin worked for JC Penny's for a couple of years before entering the real estate business. Since, he's also worked as a teacher, including a one-year stint at the St. Charles Mission on the Crow reservation in Pryor.
Politically, Rankin "directed John Anderson's bid as an independent candidate for president in 1980." (I assume he means for the state of Montana.) He ran an unsuccessful 1982 campaign for the Montana House, and withdrew from a 1992 challenge to Ron Marlene. Rankin in 1985 served on the Democratic National Rules Committee and was a 20-year member of Common Cause.
Issues: (from his website): Rankin favors cutting Medicare, saying "people fifty-five and under should prepare for needing less health care by practicing healthy life styles." Social Security also faces Rankin's wrath: he favors cutting future Social Security benefits, warning those "56 and younger" to expect benefit reductions and wants to reduce SS benefits for wealthy recipients and raise the age for receiving payments to 70.
Concerning taxes, Rankin wants to close inappropriate loopholes for businesses; he favors a path to citizenship with penalties for immigrants who entered the country illegally; wishes to "preserve the status quo" on gun laws; supports the recently passed Congressional health-care bill; supports funding "green alternative energy," while supporting coal and natural gas production in the "short term," hoping to find a way we can burn coal "cleanly"; supports the Employee Free Choice Act; supports cap-and-trade as a means to reduce carbon pollution and reduce the threat of climate change; does "not support a repeal of Roe v Wade," but does support "efforts to restrict abortion by shrinking available public funds and encouraging alternatives"; and wants to "phase out affirmative action."
Democrats running for the House: "If I'm fortunate to win in November it would in large part be because of my stand against excessive money and the polarization of politicians it causes. I would say to the Montana political leaders of both parties: political compromise, the true strength of our country, is what the voters want and if you don't begin to work together, you'll not be re-elected. And if you want to govern for the people of Montana, you need to compromise."
Democrats campaign for U.S. House seat: "Billings real estate broker Sam Rankin believes the most corrosive element in American politics is money.
"That's one of the reasons Rankin, 65, doesn't plan to raise much of it.
"'Most Montanans and most people throughout the country think excessive money has corrupted the process, and the common man's voice has been drowned out,' Rankin said. 'I believe special interests rule back in Washington, D.C., and I don't like the way they rule.'"
Democrat Rankin running on campaign reform in House primary: "He has taken stands that other candidates shy away from.
"For example, Rankin is calling for major revisions of federal 'entitlements' such as Social Security and Medicare.
"'I'm semi-touching the third rail (of politics),' he said. 'No one else wants to go near Social Security and Medicare.'
"Rankin has called for keeping Social Security benefits the same for the elderly, but letting people ages 56 and younger know that their benefits will be reduced to ensure its stability. Over 10 years, he would raise the age at which people may begin drawing Social Security benefits to 70 from the current 62. In addition, Social Security benefits for wealthy people should be reduced, although not drastically, over time, he said.
"As for Medicare, the federal health program for the elderly, Rankin said those ages 55 and younger should prepare for receiving reduced health care benefits when they get older by making healthy lifestyle choices."
House candidate fights big-money politics: "Starting in 2007, as a real estate broker and agent, he switched to a flat fee for selling homes instead of the standard commission.
"'It started off to help people having trouble selling their houses when they didn't have enough equity,' he said. 'People have to have their own open house, show the property and buy ads.'
"He believes his background selling real estate will serve the state well because he knows how to facilitate and negotiate successful deals, assuming both parties are sincere.
"'Democrats who wonder who I am and about my credentials need only look at my commitment to try and help others,' he said. Rankin pointed to his service as a Peace Corps volunteer in India, although he returned home early because of an illness, as an Army medic in Vietnam and as a teacher."