Voter's Guide, 2020 Fall Elections, Louisiana
Position U.S. Senator
NameJohn Paul Bourgeois

Campaign Information

Campaign Web Site

Bio Information

Party AffiliationNo Party
ProfessionPublic Health Librarian
Present Employer / positionLSU Health - New Orleans
Length of residence in Jurisdiction9 years
List of educational institutions and degreesMasters of Library & Information Sciences August 2013
Louisiana State University/ Baton Rouge, LA

Masters of Public Health, Epidemiology May 2010
Tulane School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine/ New Orleans, LA

Bachelors of Science, Biology & Bachelors of Arts, English May 2009
Louisiana Tech University/Ruston, LA
Prior elected and appointed positions
Civic involvement and affiliationsSt. Mark's Episcopal Church, 2017-Present
Bestbank Running Club, 2016-Present
Election Commissioner, 2016-Present
New Orleans Beekeepers, 2017-Present

Questions specific to the position

1. The United States is formally withdrawing from the Paris Climate Agreement, effective Nov. 4, 2020. The formal withdrawal is reversible. Explain your reasons why you support or oppose the United States joining with other nations to reduce global emissions. The US should join with other countries to reduce global emissions. This is a global issue, not a single nation or continent issue. Additionally, in the decades to come, one of the main questions our children ask of us will be what did we do to address climate change when the effects were so clear?
Louisiana is an energy-producing state, yet we are also the most vulnerable to climate change’s impacts. Given our energy infrastructure and our abundance of sugar cane, we can transition to producing more alcohol-based fuels, lessening our climatic impact. Furthermore, we need to consider adopting traditional renewable energy sources at a national level to support our energy independence.
2. In recent years, voters have expressed concern that their votes don't matter due to election security concerns, the possibility of foreign influence, and the role of large money in elections. What measures would you propose to address these issues? First, for this very reason, I am not actively fundraising. There is too much money in the electoral system already. In 94% of races, the candidate who spends the most wins. This gives power to the wealthy and the corporations, not citizens.

As a librarian, this country has perilous anti-science, anti-intellectualism streak. This characteristic has made it possible to sway voters with enough money and has made COVID-19 so much more deadly. As of writing nearly 180,000 Americans, including 5,000 Louisianans, have died from this virus. This is unacceptable; early adoption and strict adherence to public health recommendations would have lessened this outbreak. Why were these policies not in place sooner with more adamancy?

Simply put, disinformation and conspiracies have stymied our national response. Guidance to drink bleach, to ingest supplements, to self-experiment with unproven therapies is negligent at best and criminal at worst. In response to COVID-19, Congress needs to support critical thinking skills at all stages of life. This will not only improve our preparedness for future pandemics but will make the US more competitive in the informational economy.
3. What can the Federal government do to raise the basic economic health and even the playing field so all U.S. citizens have equal opportunities? What measures would you support to address the following goals (please provide examples of specific legislation or programs)? a. A living wage for all workers:
I'm not sold on this idea. What would that look like?
b. Paid sick leave for all workers:
c. Ensuring pay equity for all workers:
d. Providing access to quality child care and early childhood education:
e. Improving the quality of K-12 education for all children:
f. Providing affordable higher education:
The Federal government should invest in higher education, funding 2 years of full-time enrollment at state-run universities, vocational schools, or community colleges.
g. Removing barriers to financing and housing:
The 2009 Recession was caused by banks financing more house than buyers could afford. The government needs to have a hand in protecting consumers from big banks.
h. Providing access to affordable healthcare for all:
Freely accessible preventive care and screenings minimize healthcare costs, especially to those most vulnerable to crippling expenditures. Furthermore, it is far cheaper for the government in the long-term to address maladies earlier before a condition becomes a chronic disease.
4. What can be done at the Federal level to improve public safety and confidence in law enforcement? Would you support measures to address the following (please answer yes or no and provide examples of specific legislation): a. Reallocate resources and funds from policing/law enforcement to address social ills that plague many disinvested communities:
Police are not adequately trained to handle domestic and mental health situations. Police departments need counselors and mental health professionals in the field in order to assist with these more delicate situations.
b. Reform qualified immunity:
c. Ban use of excess force (e.g., chokeholds, shoot to kill):
d. Establish a nationwide database of law enforcement officers found to have used excessive force:
Seems extreme.
e. Ban the providing of local police departments with military equipment:
Yes. The police should not be militarized.
5. Do you support a system for undocumented immigrants already in the country to earn legal status and to have a path to citizenship? If so, what steps do you consider necessary? I support DACA. For those who came as adults, the pathway should be far more rigorous but feasible. If they can avoid deportation or committing a crime for up to 5 years and demonstrate continuous residency in the US, then they may begin the naturalization process.