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On the Issues
How would you balance the federal budget/reduce the federal deficit?
I would reduce the deficit first by identifying and addressing the large amounts of waste that is present within our federal government. We must also reform the tax code and gradually do away with the income tax. www.daltonsenate.com
What steps do you support to reform Social Security and Medicare?
Social Security : cut waste and either raise taxes or cut benefits. There are lots of ways to do both. We are only facing a shortfall of .65% of GDP.
Economist Alice M. Rivlin summarized major reform proposals in January 2009: “Fixing Social Security is a relatively easy technical problem. It will take some combination of several much-discussed marginal changes: raising the retirement age gradually in the future (and then indexing it to longevity), raising the cap on the payroll tax, fixing the cost of living adjustment, and modifying the indexing of initial benefits so they grow more slowly for more affluent people.
Nobel Laureate economist Paul Krugman, deriding what he called “the hype about a Social Security crisis”, wrote:rnt[T]here is a long-run financing problem. But it’s a problem of modest size. The [CBO] report finds that extending the life of the Trust Fund into the 22nd century, with no change in benefits, would require additional revenues equal to only 0.54 percent of G.D.P. That’s less than 3 percent of federal spending — less than we’re currently spending in Iraq. And it’s only about one-quarter of the revenue lost each year because of President Bush’s tax cuts — roughly equal to the fraction of those cuts that goes to people with incomes over $500,000 a year. Given these numbers, it’s not at all hard to come up with fiscal packages that would secure the retirement program, with no major changes, for generations to come.
The CBO reported in July 2010 the effects of a series of policy options on the “actuarial balance” shortfall, which over the 75 year horizon is approximately 0.6% of GDP. On a GDP of $14.5 trillion, this represents approximately $90 billion per year; the dollar amount would grow along with GDP. For example, CBO estimated that raising the payroll tax by two percentage points (from 12.4% to 14.4%) over 20 years would increase annual program revenues by 0.6% of GDP, solving the 75-year shortfall.
Medicare: address the fraud waste and abuse in the program and adjust benefits that can be funded without adding to the deficit.
Would you sign a pledge to never raise federal taxes? Why or why not?
No – Nobody knows the future. I would not want to limit our options during emergencies. www.daltonsenate.com
How should health care be reformed?
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, although flawed, is a step in the right direction to providing a basic right...access to healthcare at a level that the government can reasonably fund.
The proper role of the federal government is to protect the citizens of the United States through an affordable national defense and health care system. You can't have a safe country without providing both.
rnI believe access to healthcare is as important to everyone in the United States as a public education. Therefore, it is a proper an necessary function of our government to provide affordable access to healthcare as well as a public education. Neither one is overly socialistic in my view.
What was wrong with the Supreme Court decision?rnThe Supreme Court's recent decision to allow the individual mandate erodes our rights. Like portions of the patriot act, the individual mandate is an unnecessary infringement on our rights. http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/11pdf/11-393c3a2.pdf)rn2. CHIEFJUSTICE ROBERTS concluded in Part III—A that the indiu00acvidual mandate is not a valid exercise of Congress's power under the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause. Pp. 16—30.
(a) The Constitution grants Congress the power to "regulate Commerce." Art. I, u00a78, cl. 3 (emphasis added). The power to regulatecommerce presupposes the existence of commercial activity to be regu00aculated. This Court's precedent reflects this understanding: As exu00acpansive as this Court's cases construing the scope of the commerce power have been, they uniformly describe the power as reaching "acu00activity." E.g., United States v. Lopez, 514 U. S. 549, 560. The individu00acual mandate, however, does not regulate existing commercial activiu00acty. It instead compels individuals to become active in commerce bypurchasing a product, on the ground that their failure to do so affectsinterstate commerce.
Construing the Commerce Clause to permit Congress to regulate individuals precisely because they are doing nothing would open a new and potentially vast domain to congressional authority. Conu00acgress already possesses expansive power to regulate what people do. Upholding the Affordable Care Act under the Commerce Clausewould give Congress the same license to regulate what people do notdo. The Framers knew the difference between doing something and doing nothing. They gave Congress the power to regulate commerce, not to compel it. Ignoring that distinction would undermine the prinu00acciple that the Federal Government is a government of limited and enumerated powers. The individual mandate thus cannot be susu00actained under Congress's power to "regulate Commerce." Pp. 16—27.
(b) Nor can the individual mandate be sustained under the Necu00acessary and Proper Clause as an integral part of the Affordable CareAct's other reforms. Each of this Court's prior cases upholding lawsunder that Clause involved exercises of authority derivative of, andin service to, a granted power. E.g., United States v. Comstock, 560 U. S. ___. The individual mandate, by contrast, vests Congress with the extraordinary ability to create the necessary predicate to the exu00acercise of an enumerated power and draw within its regulatory scope those who would otherwise be outside of it. Even if the individual mandate is "necessary" to the Affordable Care Act's other reforms, such an expansion of federal power is not a "proper" means for maku00acing those reforms effective. Pp. 27—30.
3. CHIEFJUSTICE ROBERTS concluded in Part III—B that the individual mandate must be construed as imposing a tax on those who do not have health insurance, if such a construction is reasonable.
As simply stated in the above opinion, the government cannot compel me to buy something. Furthermore, Justice Robert's judicial ruling that the mandate is a tax is incorrect. This is another example of judicial activism and the court is overstepping its bounds.
What should Congress do now?rnThe Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act like any other policy made in a crisis situation is not a perfect plan and weaknesses should be addressed as they are discovered. The mandate itself is a critical weakness because it does diminish our rights. This doesn't mean we repeal the whole act. Congress now needs to work together and address issues such as the individual mandate and continue to improve the act over time.
Whoever calls for a repeal of the act because of the mandate or for any other reason must have an acceptable substitute ready to take its place.
Do you support a woman’s right to an abortion?
As your next Senator I will take an oath to support and defend the constitution, which I will do to the best of my ability. I will also uphold laws that are in place.
However,it is irrefutable that human life begins at conception and abortion at any stage is the killing of human life.
I do not condone the killing of human life. I pray that anyone considering to have an abortion reconsider and ask for help. I also pray that everyone, whether or not you condone abortions or not, reach out and help those who decide not to have one. www.daltonsenate.com
In Congress, would you support DOMA or legislation to allow civil unions or gay marriage?
DOMA is a state issue.I support civil unions. www.daltonsenate.com
Should the federal government have a role in K-12 education?
The Federal contribution to elementary and secondary education is about 10.8 percent. This should be given to state governments in the form of block grants. The states should then have total control of the funds without federal government interference. www.daltonsenate.com
What are the benefits of school choice? Vouchers? Should they be available for private and religious schools?
School choice means competition and competition is needed to keep costs down as well as improve the level of education. I believe in school vouchers for private and religious schools -the more competition the better. www.daltonsenate.com
Do you believe climate change is happening? Do humans contribute to it? What should Congress do to address the problem?
Climate change has been taking place since the world began. Whether it is caused by man or not, it must be a major consideration when conducting business or in our daily lives. www.daltonsenate.com
What should the country’s energy policy look like?
Reduce our dependence on foreign oil as quickly as possible so it no longer has a significant impact on our foreign policy. No more rhetoric