Meet your candidates!
It’s an election year, and here at Plano Profile we strive to connect our community; part of that is helping educate the community and giving candidates a platform to address the community.
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Meet Lorie Burch, who is running for U.S. House of Representatives, Texas District 3 as a democratic.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.
“I am a small business owner, attorney, and leader and advocate in our community. I graduated from Plano Senior High School, before moving to San Antonio to attend college at Trinity University. During college, I was accepted to a special program at American University in Washington, D.C., part of which included interning as an investigator with the Public Defender Service of D.C., where I witnessed firsthand the racial and economic imbalances within our justice system.
I went on to attend George Washington University Law School in D.C.. My experiences in D.C. ranged from working with civil rights coalitions through my fellowships with the Human Rights Campaign and People for the American Way, to participating in discussions of judicial nominations with Senator Patrick Leahy, to assisting with an Election Protection project where I addressed voter issues on election day.
After law school, I worked as a contract attorney with the Securities and Exchange Commission. A few years after graduating, a tragedy in my family brought me back home to Plano, Texas, where I began my law practice with a focus in Wills, trust, and probate. In my years as an attorney and leader, I have advocated for individuals in the LGBT community, women, minorities, and people with special needs.
I have been honored to serve in leadership positions with the DFW Human Rights Campaign, GLBT Chamber of Commerce, and the American Business Women’s Association – to which I was elected the National President. I am excited about the next chapter in my leadership journey, as I run to represent the people of Collin County, and a community which I am proud to call my home.
Why are you running for office?
We need leaders who represent all of us. Our elected officials must be willing and able to listen to the people, inspire participation, find common ground, and work together through differences. In order for our Democracy to better serve everyone, we need to prioritize getting big money and special interests out of campaigns, increase voter turnout, end voter suppression, and inspire more everyday people from all walks of life to run for office.
We must end the divisive ideological partisanship that permeates our government and our community and work together to move our nation forward.
What makes you the most qualified person for this position?
I have a proven record of leadership and community advocacy, and a history of bringing people together and building coalitions. During my time in Washington D.C. as a law student, I was on the front lines, working with Congressional leaders to affect positive change for the American people. From my work as a small business owner and attorney, to my time spent as a leader within our community, I have more practical experience for this position than any of my opponents.
What issues are your top priorities? Name three.
Campaign Finance Reform, Voting Rights, and Education
What changes would you implement and how?
Our representatives need to be accountable to us. That is why campaign finance reform must be a priority in our legislature. Until our representatives are unable to accept untraceable support from Super PACs, corporations, and special interests, we cannot be sure that the decisions they make are in the best interest of the American people.
We need to strengthen the Voting Rights Act, to allow all people to have an equal opportunity to voice their opinion at the polls. Restrictive voting measures and gerrymandering suppress the votes of economically disadvantaged citizens and people of color. If we want our representatives to truly represent all of us, we need to ensure that every voter can make their voice heard.
Education is the great equalizer. In order to ensure that our public schools have the funding they need, I will strongly oppose the voucher system. I will also support legislation that helps reduce the economic burden of college for all students. Education shouldn’t be accessible to only those who can afford it.
What factors in your life have shaped your beliefs?
When I was young, my family moved to Indonesia for my stepfather’s job. There, I attended an international school where I was exposed to many different cultures and had the opportunity to interact with individuals I would otherwise never have met.
This experience shaped my worldview, and inspired me to advocate for others. This is what motivated me to become an attorney, and to work tirelessly to better our community and defend the rights of every person to be treated with dignity and respect.
What do you believe should be the function of government?
The role of our government is to implement the will of the people. When we elect representatives, we need to be sure that those individuals respect our values and understand our needs. If our representative government is going to ever truly represent the people, we need to have everyday people from all walks of life elected to leadership roles.
We don’t need any more leaders who promise to be our voice in Washington, only to stop listening to us as soon as they get there. That is why I don’t just want to be your voice in Washington, I want to give you a voice. I will do that by listening to members of our community, and working with everyone – regardless of their political party – to enact real change to improve the lives of every citizen of Collin County.