Chat about the race for Congress with GOP candidate Chuck Ahner
September 20, 2006
This chat has already taken place. Read the transcript below.
Chuck Ahner is challenging incumbent U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore to represent the 3rd District in Congress. <a href="http://www.ahnerforcongress.com/">His Web site can be found here.</a> <a href="http://www2.ljworld.com/chats/2006/oct/11/us_rep_dennis_moore/">His opponent, incumbent U.S. Rep. Dennis Moore, chats Oct. 11.</a> He takes your questions about the race and his positions at 1:30 p.m. Sept. 20.
Hello. Today's chat with Chuck Ahner will begin in a few moments.
Good to be here this afternoon. I look forward to answering your questions.
Do you consider yourself a 'moderate' republican or are you a true 'Reagan' conservative. Honestly, there are a huge amount of conservatives who are tired of liberals in republican clothing getting elected.
I consider myself a Republican. I believe that Republicans are united in their belief that limited government is good, taxes should be low, and our military should be strong.
The so-called "NAFTA SuperCorridor" issue is big in the KS-2 race. Do you believe there is a serious attempt being made to build a 10-12 lane Super Highway through the middle of the country? Since I-35 is a very prominent Interstate in KS-3, what is your take on the SuperCorridor issue, and on the need to expand/improve I-35 in general?
Our economy needs to continue expanding, wether it is in Wyandotte, Johnson or Douglas county. On the NAFTA highway, ths has been discussed for years yet I see little evidence of a SuperCorridor. I do see intrastate business picking up and believe Kansas has the ability to benefit from coast to coast traffic.
In the past few elections, the republican party has been divided between the moderates and conservatives. How are you planning to unite the republicans in the 3rd district against Dennis Moore?
My win in the primary showed broad support across the third district and no evidence of a split in the party. All four candidates for the Republican nomination stuck to the issues and we focused on a growing economy, energy independence, national security and healthcare reform. These are all solid issues which must be addressed. This focus propelled me to a win in all three counties by the biggest margin in a decade.
How would you vote if a Constitutional amendment (Federal) banning same-sex marriage were presented before you? Why?
I would vote to protect marriage between one man and one woman. I believe that marriage is an important institution that must be protected in our country. My priority, and what I would really bring to Congress is leadership on national defense and my experience in the business sector.
We've been talking about the problems with the current US health care system for a decade now, what do you propose to increase the availability and affordability of adequate health care?
Healthcare is a very important issue to me, and I know it can be a considerable expense to families and businesses throughout the 3rd District. I support making healthcare options more available to small companies and individuals through association health plans. I also support the right of an individual to have a health savings account. Furthermore, there is a lot of overhead that can be cleaned out of the current healthcare system. By passing comprehensive medical liability reform, we can lower some of the parasitic costs associated with high insurance premiums. We can also streamline the technology to make the healthcare system more efficient.
What do you see as being the key elements to solving our nation's dependence on foreign sources of energy, and would you support drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Reserve as a step towards that goal?
We absolutely must increase local production. Congress has been short-sighted in their energy planning over the years, and we consequently are suffering the consequences at the fuel pumps. Congress must allow exploration of our domestic oil resources, and we must also look into alternative means of energy production.
How would you deal with the current border protection issues? Would you propose any changes since it appears it is still overwhelmingly easy for terrorists to gain access to the US even with the increased security measures currently in place?
We must secure our borders. My brother and I are both graduates of West Point. My brother currently works with unmanned aerial vehicles for the United States national guard. Using a combination of these wehicles and national guard personnel we can create an effective system of monitoring that can prevent the illegal immigration over the border.
If elected will you commit to opposing vouchers, tax credits or any other diversions of tax dollars from public schools?
Kansas Families United for Public Education
I am very commited to education, and active within my children's school community. Another father and I recently created a "Dad's Program" to help get fathers more involved in their children's education. I believe that we must keep our public schools, including special education programs, fully funded. Our children are our future, and it is important that we invest in them.
We have time for one more question this afternoon.
The recent defeat of the anti-evolution majority on the State School Board indicates that Kansans oppose the teaching of creationism or intelligent design in science class. Where do you stand on this issue?
This issue continues to divide people in our state and has very little to do wth the office I am seeking. I am a man of action and want to take action on issues I can affect, like national security, energy and healthcare which can be seen at www,ahnerforcongress.com. I do believe that govenment needs to be more open and transparent, and things like earmarks and lobbyist junkets need to be reformed in DC. My office across from Metcalf South is open during most hours - call ahead at 913-385-2463 - and I would be more than glad to meet you and show you what my agenda is for the state of Kansas. Thanks for being part of this online chat.
That concludes our chat with Chuck Ahner.