How will you address the federal budget deficit?
Well, first of all, you’ve got to be honest that there are no easy answers.
The first thing is if we get people back to work and create jobs — private, public sector, whatever it takes. [Then] we’ve got more people paying taxes and fewer people who require unemployment and health care benefits. So you look at both sides of the ledger, you’ve got more coming [in] and less going out.
And then we’ve got to get real about deficit reduction, the three cents on the dollar for everything over a quarter million dollars that we could not extend — you know, the part of the 2001 tax cuts that we don’t extend — that shows that we’re serious about deficit reduction.
How would you work with members of the other party to reduce the gridlock in Congress?
You’ve seen in our campaign we’re not going up with the lies and the distortions and the accusations of the other side that make people cynical and that make it hard to work together …
So that’s the first thing. That’s why we’re not doing that, that’s why we’re having a serious discussion.
The second thing is, I was chair of the College Republicans at St. Olaf [College] and on the state board of the College Republicans.
I’ve worked with people on both sides of the aisle for years. So I know exactly how we need to sit down and really face these issues.
Would you support a second stimulus bill?
The first stimulus bill cut taxes by $400 a person so that more people could put food on the table, to get money going in the economy. It kept police and firefighters and teachers employed and it helped fund projects like the [Highway] 610 extension and the [Interstate]
If it does those kinds of things which help us create stability for families and keep police and firefighter and teachers employed and find ways to leverage dollars to get jobs, to help the private sector create jobs, yeah, I’d support that.
What should federal immigration reform look like?
It should create a much clearer and easier pathway for people to become citizens of this country.
One of the frustrations right now that people don’t understand is a lot of the folks who are in this country working here who don’t have legal status are paying taxes, they have federal I.D., they’re paying into this system.
We should make it easier for them to be here, and not hide and become citizens.
That’s what it should look like to me — a much clearer pathway.
The Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy was recently overturned by a federal judge. Do you agree with that ruling, and what would you do for gay rights on the national level?
Isn’t it ridiculous that we have people fighting for this country, fighting for our freedom, who have to hide who they really are and who have to lie about who they really are?
That’s absolutely ridiculous.
So whatever it takes to get that overturned so people who are fighting for this country can be honest about who they are is something that needs to happen.
The court battles that go back and forth are frustrating, because it seems like we have a pathway to change those things and now it’s gone back and forth, the appeals court has the stay. Honestly, let’s just get it done and move on.
Do you support the health care legislation passed last session, and should there be further federal action on health care?
This is a process. This is the beginning of a reform process. To think that one bill is going to change and reduce costs and get us to the place where we have a system that isn’t killing jobs anymore is ridiculous. …
It begins a process of trying to reduce costs in the system; it creates the kind of pooling mechanisms [and] insurance exchanges that are going to help small businesses.
Those are steps that everyone knows are good and we need to continue. It’s not done.
Do you support cap and trade legislation?
I go back to the 1980s and 1990s when we had cap and trade that reduced sulfur emissions and got rid of acid rain.
It set goals and allowed the ingenuity of the private sector to figure out how to get there and helped the economy and created jobs.
That’s what cap and trade is — it’s a completely private market, free market, ingenuity model for solving a problem.
That’s what it’s there for. That’s what it does.
Do you agree wth the Supreme Court’s Citizens United decision? Why or why not?
We need a Constitutional amendment that says that corporations do not equal individual voters and we need full disclosureof who’s paying for what in ads and political speak.
I mean, seriously look at the money we’re spending right now on these campaigns — $4 billion in this country and we don’t know where it’s all coming from.
That’s ridiculous. It has got to change. It’s got to be real, individual people who are financing campaigns.
UMN students have traveled to Florida colleges to collaborate with students on various projects.
When UMN students plan for a vacation, having trip cancellation travel insurance is a worthwhile commodity to check out.
Minneapolis Used Cars
Give back to the Minnesota community with a boat donation at boat4causes.org.
If you have been involved in a car accident call a Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer for a free consultation.