As a former Marine, Jefferson City native, and advocate for the middle class, Lucas Kunce’s number one mission in this campaign is to fundamentally change who has power in this country. He wants everyday Missourians—working people who know how to take care of each other—to call the shots, not the monopolies, multinational corporations, and career politicians who’ve sucked Missouri dry and stripped our communities for parts. He’s building a populist, people-powered movement to take back this U.S. Senate seat for the people. And this is what we’re fighting for.
End Monopoly Domination of Our Economy
Over the last 40 years, career politicians have allowed a handful of massive corporations to dominate our industries and rig the system against working people. Free markets, the bedrock of our democratic and economic system, are no longer free. Today, three giant companies dominate broadband, one company handles 60% of all internet searches, one company sets the prices for most of the nation’s seed corn, and a handful of companies now control the pharmaceutical industry.
Corporate monopoly power has destroyed family farms, increased the cost of health care, suppressed wages, made it impossible for small businesses to compete, and shipped countless jobs overseas. It’s made Wall Street and corporate wealth the focus of our politics, not the wellbeing of working families who’ve been left behind. Lucas joined the nonprofit American Economic Liberties Project to fight corporate monopoly power— from Big Tech and Big Agriculture to pharmaceutical cartels and defense monopolies. In the U.S. Senate, he’ll continue that fight.
Break up corporate monopolies
That starts by breaking up massive corporations so that small innovative businesses can rise up in the marketplace. So that fair competition and innovation drive our economy. So that companies are incentivized to spend money on research and development to stay ahead of their competitors, rather than spending it lobbying. We also need to revive our antitrust laws, increase Congressional oversight, and repeal or revise laws like Section 230 that shield these companies so everyday people have the power to compete in our economy, demand fair treatment in the workplace, and hold corporations accountable for abuse.
Abolishing Corporate PACs And Safeguarding Democracy
Right now, massive corporations are buying politicians like Senators Josh Hawley and Roy Blunt with corporate PAC donations so they can write the rules we all have to play by in our economy. They then direct their bought-off politicians to approve corporate judges who interpret the law on behalf of big corporations instead of workers and small businesses. This system is leaving working people across Missouri behind.
But to flip the power dynamic in this country, Lucas believes we’ll need to do more than just hold corporate monopolies accountable in our economy — we need to also safeguard our democracy from corruption and empower everyday people to make their voices heard and their votes count.
Abolish Corporate PACs
That’s why he’s gone beyond just rejecting contributions from corporate PACs. As Missouri’s next U.S. Senator, Lucas Kunce will fight to completely abolish corporate PACs, ban the family members of U.S. Senators and Representatives from working as lobbyists, and require members of Congress to disclose when legislation has been written by a lobbyist or special interest group. He’ll vote to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Act to protect voters from discrimination and undue obstacles to voting.
Enacting A Marshall Plan for the Midwest
Under the leadership of politicians like Roy Blunt and Josh Hawley, our country has been sucked dry by massive corporations and career politicians who’ve stripped our communities for parts and left our families struggling and divided. Missouri has seen the worst of it, with jobs being shipped overseas, our land and industry being sold to multinational corporations, a living wage becoming harder to come by, and small businesses losing the chance to compete.
In 1948, the United States enacted The Marshall Plan, helping Europe rebuild homes, infrastructure, industries, and whole cities after World War II. Lucas also personally witnessed the spending of billions of dollars building up Iraq and Afghanistan.
After 40 years of devastation from unchecked monopoly power, Lucas Kunce thinks it’s time to invest here in the heartland, through a Marshall Plan for the Midwest to rebuild forgotten communities, create the next generation of energy jobs, and bring power back to American workers. Instead of spending trillions of dollars on forever wars in the Middle East and printing billions of dollars every month to juice Wall Street, we’ll put our tax dollars into towns and cities here at home.
Marshall Plan Our Forgotten Towns And Cities
We’ve been building things right here in Missouri for generations, so Lucas’s plan would put our carpenters, tradespeople, sheet metal workers, laborers, and engineers to work rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure, expanding broadband coverage, and making our homes, businesses, and public buildings energy efficient. At the same time, we’d be investing in job training, local governments, and the factories of the future to create generations of sustainable jobs.
Achieving Universal Health Care
Right now, all the power in our health care system is in the hands of a few massive corporations. Giant conglomerates are buying up independent doctor’s officers, cutting nursing staff, and closing down “inefficient” health care providers in rural Missouri. Pharmaceutical cartels are colluding to make the costs of life-saving drugs like insulin artificially skyrocket. And insurance companies continue to profit from denying care. The still largely unchecked power of massive corporations is making health care more expensive and leading to worse health outcomes.
Most Americans are now just one medical emergency away from disaster. Lucas lived that personally when his sister’s heart surgeries led to his parents’ bankruptcy. Lucas believes health care is a human right. We need a universal health care system that empowers everyday people, not corporations seeking profit. And that includes protecting the right to abortion.
Affirming That Black Lives Matter
Black Lives Matter. Lucas believes the Black Lives Matter Movement is the frontline of the fight for human rights. He recognizes the reality that Black Missourians of all ages are more at risk of dying as a result of police use of force compared to white Missourians. But it doesn’t stop there — Black Missourians face systemic racism and inequities in school, in the workplace, in the criminal justice system, and in communities across our state and our country. In this campaign, Lucas is committed to working with Black leaders and activists to enact a comprehensive agenda that empowers Black Missourians and creates a more equitable and inclusive America.
Protecting LGBTQ+ Americans
Lucas believes that no matter where they live or work, LGBTQ+ Missourians should be empowered to feel safe and supported in their communities. That’s why we must act to pass the Equality Act, protect our kids by banning conversion therapy nationwide, and end the epidemic of violence against trans Americans.
Legalizing Marijuana And Confronting The Opioid Epidemic
For years, the massive corporations behind private prisons, the insurance industry, and pharmaceutical cartels have pushed our government to keep up a “War on Drugs” that’s cost billions in taxpayer dollars and led to the arrest of millions of Americans for nonviolent marijuana offenses. Meanwhile, the United States is experiencing an opioid overdose crisis, with Missouri alone experiencing more than a thousand opioid-related deaths every year. Black communities have suffered a disproportionate impact from the War On Drugs, with Black Americans being 3-4 times more likely to be arrested for marijuana, despite consuming it at the same rate as white Americans. Lucas thinks it’s time for a new direction. In the U.S. Senate, he’ll fight to legalize marijuana nationwide and invest public resources in the treatment and resources we need to end the Opioid Epidemic.
Fighting for Workers
American workers have done more than just build our country. Through unions, working people of all backgrounds come together to bargain for better wages, benefits, and protections for themselves, their families, and their communities. But across the country, massive corporations and the politicians they pay for are doing everything they can to roll back and block further progress for working families in the name of profit.
Lucas is committed to fundamentally changing who has power in this country, and the rights that workers have to organize, to be paid a living wage, and to be protected from discrimination are foundational keystones to making that change happen. That’s why Lucas supports passing the PRO Act, raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour, strengthening the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and ending government-section pay discrimination against Americans with disabilities. As Senator, he’ll also fight back against the outsourcing and privatization of essential services provided by public employees in federal, state, and local governments.
Breaking Up Big Ag
Missouri is in the middle of a farming crisis. Massive, multinational corporations are attempting to own every facet of agriculture in our state. Chinese-owned Smithfield and Brazilian-owned JBS have been able to gobble up farmland across Missouri under the blessing of career politicians in Jefferson City and Washington, D.C., putting family farmers out of businesses, polluting our land, and making rural economies struggle.
As Senator, Lucas will fight to break up Big Ag and to make sure no Missouri farmland can be owned by a foreign corporation so we can empower independent farmers to compete in an open market. He’ll fight for new trade agreements that benefit family farms, not global monopolistic commodity traders. And he’ll empower consumers to choose American by reinstating mandatory country of origin labeling nationwide.
Investing In Education
In Washington, we’ve been printing billions of dollars to keep Wall Street corporations afloat and spending trillions of dollars on overseas wars for oil while millions of Americans struggle under the historic weight of student loan debt. To make up for tax breaks and corporate handouts in Jefferson City, politicians have cut so much from education that dozens of Missouri school districts can now only afford to hold class four days a week. And in the forgotten neighborhoods, towns, and cities across our state and our region, communities of color and working people continue to lack the same opportunities to go to good schools or train for a new job that are afforded to white and wealthy communities.
Lucas knows that to build the next generation of energy here in Missouri, we need to empower Missourians of all ages and backgrounds with the education and training opportunities they’ll need to succeed in the economies of today and tomorrow. That means making college more accessible by providing relief for student loans. It means investing in K-12 and Pre-K education so our teachers have the resources they need to help our kids grow and succeed. It means putting more money into Pell Grants, the very program Lucas attended college on. And it means investing in Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority-Serving Institutions.
Protecting Social Security
Social Security is one of the few areas where everyday Americans have power, where, to some degree, every single person in our country is taken care of and provided for. But even when it’s still not enough for far too many seniors to keep up with the rising costs of living, Wall Street corporations have kept up their attempts at privatization, hoping to turn a profit by gambling your contributions on the market. As a senator, Lucas will fight back against these attacks and work to strengthen Social Security so that seniors have the power to retire comfortably and with dignity.
Keeping Our Promise To Veterans
As a former Marine Corps officer, Lucas knows how important it is that our country keeps its promises to the brave American veterans who have put their lives on the line so others didn’t have to. In the U.S. Senate, he’ll work to expand access to mental health services for veterans of all ages, adapt job training opportunities to the workplaces of the future, and provide support to the nearly 500 Missouri veterans experiencing homelessness.