Independent Nick Thomas taking on the two-party system in run for Congress | VailDaily.com

Independent Nick Thomas taking on the two-party system in run for Congress

Independent candidate Nick Thomas says he represents the biggest voting block in Colorado's 2nd Congressional district.

Indeed, with 209,000 registered non-affiliated voters to the 175,000 Democrat and 133,000 Republican registered residents in the 2nd, Thomas' status as an Independent may indeed capture the most voters in our area.

After receiving 1,300 signatures from voters in the district, Thomas earned a place on the ballot and was asked to choose a name for the group he feels he represents.

"I chose to say Independent because I believe that word really connects with a lot of people right now, in this moment," he said.

Couple that sentiment with the fact that there are actual Independents in Congress already and you have what might be winning formula, Thomas says.

"For once in a very rare reality, we have a chance of a third party actually being legitimate, credible and having a win," he said.

Recommended Stories For You

ENDORSING Proposition 112

Born in Colorado, Thomas has spent his whole life fostering an appreciation for the environment. He calls himself the most environmentally conscious candidate, having spoke at AREDay and EarthX in recent years and dedicating a big part of his platform to environmental issues.

"I'm the only Congressional candidate in the entire state — not just in CD2 but the entire state — to have endorsed Prop 112," Thomas said on Sunday, Oct. 14. "Even if you ignored the health effects of fracking near people's homes and near schools — if you ignore poisoning water and poisoning air — the amount of water that the fracking process uses in a state with a finite resource of water … it's crazy to me that we are expending, poisoning, using so much water in order to get a resource that we don't need to extract if we pushed for renewables at a far more serious rate than we are today."

Thomas said he is surprised and disappointed by the fact that Democrat Joe Neguse has not endorsed Prop 112.

"It's double speak," Thomas said. "He will not endorse it because he gets money from the industry."

In his own personal effort to encourage more use of renewable energy in Colorado, Thomas said part of his work with State Senator Ron Tupa — for whom Thomas worked as an aide — was focused around getting state statue 38-30-168 passed. The statute prevents homeowner associations from unreasonable restrictions on renewable energy devices.

"Before we passed this, HOAs were could tell you, you weren't allowed to put solar on the roof because it was ugly," Thomas said. "I specifically worked on that legislation because I saw it impact my parents, and that was one of the moments when I realized that even with all the bureaucracy, politics could work and could help people. Right after it passed, we put solar on our roof. Now, 10 years later, two out of three houses in that area have solar. We passed it, it worked and it was the greatest feeling ever."

HIGH COST OF HEALTH CARE

With an eye on the Western Slope and the high cost of health care here, Thomas says there's a couple quick fixes that could happen immediately en route to a better long-term solution.

"I believe we need to move toward a single payer system. But even if you didn't pass any major legislation, by simply opening up state lines, making it so you can buy insurance on an open marketplace across state lines, it would greatly help places like (the Western Slope)," Thomas said. "We already buy across state lines with car insurance. And if Colorado requires better insurance than other states, there could be certain addendum or riders in order to be up to snuff with the state law. It would be totally easy to do that."

Another way to bring down health care costs would lie in prescription drugs, Thomas said.

"Immediately, any drug that has been approved by Canada or Western Europe's version of the FDA is automatically approved here, and you could buy it across borders," he said. "We have to be able to buy drugs across the border, because we're paying right now so much more than we should and it's one of the biggest cost drivers of this whole crazy system and could help get costs down on day one, particularly in the 2nd District."

HUMAN ISSUES

Thomas calls both health care and the environment "human issues, not red or blue issues."

By focusing on those human issues, he hopes to capture a segment of the population that's fed up with the red and blue issues.

"People are so angry with the system right now, they're upset with all the parties," he said. "There's progressive democrats who are angry with the normal Clinton establishment and moderate Republicans who are angry with the Trump establishment … I don't think people realize the repercussion of simply voting one party without an agenda, although, what's the alternative? In most places, there's not much."

Learn more about Independent Nick Thomas by visiting nickthomasforcongress.com.