Advertisement

Archive for Sunday, August 5, 1990

MARK R. CREAMER DEMOCRATS FOR CONGRESS

August 5, 1990

Advertisement

312 Indiana Age: 43 Occupation: Sculptor, house husband, former plumbing contractor

Q. What steps do you favor to reduce the federal deficit? Be specific about any spendning cuts you advocate.

A. It is quite obviously time for cutbacks in military spending. The Stealth Bomber program is too expensive and should be limited to finishing those planes now under construction. I do not favor the expansion of Fort Riley. I do not want to see our national security compromised, but I feel that educating our children is perhaps our best long-term national defense.

I would like to cut administrative costs and "red tape."

I favor the legalization of hemp with heavy taxation, generating revenue for the government while reducing law enforcement, court and prison costs.

Q. President Bush has moved away from his pledge of no new taxes. Do you think new taxes are needed? If so, what taxes would you support?

A. Taxes have already increased dramatically for Kansans. I would not want to see more new taxation, especially for low- and moderate-income Americans. I support increased taxation of the wealthy and increased taxes on luxury items.

The difference between me and the other candidates is that I would take advantage of a $50 billion new revenue source from the legalization and taxation of hemp. Marijuana use is widespread (25 percent of the U.S. population has smoked it), yet the government receives no income from its use while incurring great financial and social costs in the futile effort to prohibit its use.

Q. What will be your No. 1 legislative priority if elected?

A. We are faced with already high taxes, the need for more funding for all kinds of programs and projects, and a staggering national debt. The legalization of hemp could mean $50 billion in new revenue. Kansas farmers could realize as much as $1 billion in increased revenue growing hemp for food, fuel, clothing, paper, building materials and hundreds of other products and accompanying cottage industries.

The legalization of hemp is not merely the "right to get high," but rather it means governmental control and revenue of a substance which is already flourishing in an underground market.

Q. What should be the federal government's role in combating illegal drugs? Are sufficient resources being allocated to effectively fight the battle?

A. Marijuana, safer than tobacco and less intoxicating than alcohol, accounts for 75 percent of illicit drug use. Decriminalization would free up prison space and allow tight resources to be used to fight hard drugs. Marijuana is not physically addictive. Education and counseling deal more effectively with psychological addiction than prison time. If people are determined to get high, why not allow them access to comparatively safer marijuana rather than harder drugs such as crack? I support drug tests which determine actual intoxication levels, to be used when there is probable cause to suspect drug use on the job or while operating vehicles.

Q. The price of the savings and loan rescue continues to rise. Is the bailout being properly managed? What should be done to reduce the cost to taxpayers and is more regulation needed to prevent the need for such a rescue in the future?

A. I can be criticized for not being lawyer, yet all the lawyers in Washington, including our congressman, have certainly bungled the savings and loan situation. A government which callously ignores the hungry and homeless has subsidized the biggest ripoff in history with taxpayer money. It is time for some new blood in Washington. I am sure I could add some creative insight to any legislative discussion. I favor a crackdown on white-collar crime, with tough prosecution and confiscation of the money and property of guilty parties. This type of scandal should never be allowed to happen again.

Jim Slattery

Topeka Age: 42 Occupation: Incumbent congressman, realtor

Q. What steps do you favor to reduce the federal deficit? Be specific about any spendning cuts you advocate.

A. I have made elimination of the B-2 bomber one of my top legislative priorities. This will save the taxpayers at least $50 billion over the life of the plane. I also favor elimination of the super conducting super collider. Reductions can also be made in foreign aid, agriculture, and entitlements. The Congress should not increase the space program as much as President Bush wants.

I shall continue to fight for less spending than President Bush wants, and less than most of my colleagues in Congress.

Q. President Bush has moved away from his pledge of no new taxes. Do you think new taxes are needed? If so, what taxes would you support?

A. Spending reductions must be achieved before revenues are increased. The president and the bipartisan congressional leaders have admitted some additional revenue will be needed. The debate is over who should pay more.

I believe middle-income taxpayers shoulder an unfair burden of federal taxes. For example, a person who makes $50,000 in taxable income will pay $330 on the next $1,000 of taxable income, while a person earning $200,000 wil pay only $280. This is unfair and should be changed so the $200,000 earner is paying at least the same rate as the $50,000 earner.

Q. What will be your No. 1 legislative priority if you are elected?

A. Whoever represents the 2nd District of Kansas must be involved in a number of legislative issues. I will continue to work for sensible farm policy, strong environmental legislation, reform of Medicare, and adequate funding for education, including Haskell.

The most important challenge facing America is our budget deficit. We must simply stop mortgaging the future of America. I will continue to fight for elimination of wasteful government spending like the B-2 bomber.

Q. What should be the federal government's role in combating illegal drugs? Are sufficient resources being allocated to effectively fight the battle?

A. I have supported additional funding for drug rehabilitation and education efforts to combat drug abuse. I believe that every young American who wants to stop illegal drug use should be able to find help to do so. This is a sensible investment in the future of our country. Unfortunately, many drug addicts are unable to find help when they want it.

I support tough criminal penalties for the sale of addictive drugs, especially when the sale is to our children.

Q. The price of the savings and loan rescue continues to rise. Is the bailout being properly managed? What should be done to reduce the cost to taxpayers and is more regulation needed to prevent the need for such a rescue in the future?

A. President Bush claims he is doing a good job of administering the savings and loan bailout. Time will tell.

I have introduced legislation that would reduce the interest rate on money borrowed to finance the cleanup. This could save taxpayers billions of dollars. Unfortunately, the president opposed my legislation.

I have also encouraged the president to hire the additional FBI agents and investigators needed to prosecute the dishonest S&L executives.

Many honest S&Ls may be forced out of business if the regulations imposed on them are not reasonable. This will ultimately increase the cost to the taxpayers.

It is critical that the regulations be adequate to protect against past mistakes while not regulating honest people and business.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.