On the Issues
How do you propose the Legislature closes Maine’s budget gap?
According to the Maine Constitution, the budget is required to be balanced. This is done each session by determining what the state government has to provide and pay for using our tax dollars, and by determining what can better be done by citizens in the private sector. The 125th Legislature passed structural reforms to help stop annual shortfalls that have plagued state government, we need to continue to improve the way we budget taxpayer money.
Do you think same-sex marriage should be legal in Maine?
The question is on the ballot. This is an issue the people of Maine will decide. I support their decision.
Do you support school choice?
It is an option. Maine needs to expect academic excellence for all students. Parents, taxpayers, administrators, legislators, teachers, and students all need to have this focus.
Do you think Maine's school consolidation program has been successful?
In some cases it has worked — Most importantly, the program has initiated conversations among schools to find ways they can work together to share and use resources more wisely.
Do you think Maine should expand MaineCare as proposed by the president under the Affordable Care Act?
Maine should comply with the law. However, Maine should not be required by the federal government to provide more generous benefits than other states. Maine has not been able to afford the MaineCare we had. Providing “coverage” but not paying the hospital bill was not a solution.
What is the biggest thing Maine can do to attract more jobs to the state?
Giving existing businesses and potential/new businesses the confidence they need to create jobs and hire more people. State government needs to be an advocate for large and small businesses, not the adversary. Maine needs to continue to reverse a decades long reputation of an anti-business legislature.
Do you support lowering the state income tax? What state spending would you cut to make up for the loss of revenue?
How does Maine compare to other states? This is a question our residents ask when determining retirement residency or during future business planning. If the Maine income tax rate is much different from other states, we are at a huge disadvantage. Setting the appropriate tax rate does not necessarily result in lower revenue.
Are Maine's public assistance benefits too generous? How should they be changed?
This is not an area where we need to show our generosity with tax dollars. Mainers are generous with their own money, but government needs to focus our tax dollars on those who really need assistance. The property tax payers in service center cities, like Bangor, should not bear the cost.
What should the state do to lower energy costs?
Everything! Energy costs are one of the biggest deterrents to creating jobs! State government needs to look at all ways to lower the cost of supply and delivery of energy. Focusing on access to natural gas is the most promising near-term solution.
Should Maine place more restrictions on abortion?
The state of Maine has numerous laws limiting abortion. In the current environment, the issue is adequately addressed.