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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund

Smart Voter
State of California (Butte, Shasta, Nevada, Tehama, Siskiyou, Placer, Lassen, Plumas, Modoc, Sierra, Glenn Counties) June 5, 2012 Election
Candidates Answer Questions on the Issues
United States Representative; District 1


The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of California Education Fund and asked of all candidates for this office.     See below for questions on Economy, Budget, Energy, Health care, Campaign financing

Click on a name for candidate information.   See also more information about this contest.

? 1. In this time of high unemployment, what are the most important steps that should be taken to improve our nationís economy?

Answer from Gregory Cheadle, J.D.:

Those in government should come to the realization that the role of government is to provide an environment conducive to fostering "...life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" not the antithesis of it.

Taxes and meaningless regulations act to discourage business growth and development, hence these must be minimized and enacted to reward rather than punish business and industry.

Answer from Sam Aanestad:

We must immediately cut mandates, regulations, taxes and fees that prohibit small businesses from creating jobs. That's how we get moving again. Ronald Reagan showed us how potent the American free market can be if it is allowed to be truly free. That's what I'll fight for. I'll fight to immediately repeal Obamacare and to freeze any other pending job-killing regulations. I'll also fight for an immediate cut in corporate taxes. We cannot be competitive with the rest of the world if much needed capital and other resources flee our country because we have the world's highest corporate tax rate. We must get a handle on the national debt. Businesses cannot operate with certainty and stability with the debt looming over our economy. We must have a viable plan in place now to reduce spending and solve this debt. I will also fight for real, meaningful tort reform so businesses are no longer subject to aggressive trial lawyers and their extortion tactics. That includes reforming the Americans with Disabilities act so it's no longer used as a hammer on businesses, and it includes passing a "right-to-repair" tort reform law that protects business owners and dissuades trial lawyers.

Answer from Michael Dacquisto:

The only long term jobs government spending creates are government jobs. Creating government jobs will not solve our problems. Private sector jobs must be created.

The government needs to stop borrowing and spending money it does not have. Positive steps in that area will cause the private sector to begin expansion and to start new ventures. This will increase employment.

The government needs to stop interfering in the economy. It needs to reduce its regulations. They do nothing but strangle business and free enterprise. They create great uncertainty in the private capital markets which makes business very reluctant to invest its capital. When the government shows positive action that demonstrates it will let private enterprise flourish robust job growth will follow in short order.

Answer from Pete Stiglich:

We must take aggressive and immediate action to reduce our ever-growing debt by cutting spending, cutting government bureaucracy and creating an environment that encourages saving, investment and job creation.

? 2. How should the federal budget deficit be addressed, now and into the future? How should budget priorities for defense and domestic programs be adjusted?

Answer from Pete Stiglich:

Our elected leaders in Washington must set aside political, personal and special interest agendas and pursue a strategy that begins "Putting America First". A debt war must be waged on a series of fronts. First and foremost, politicians must stop the insane spending. I favor serious and real cuts across the entire federal budget. A war on waste and fruad must also be waged.

Answer from Gregory Cheadle, J.D.:

The budget deficit mentality of spending more than what we take in should come to an abrupt halt. This is why one of my top priorities is to rein in government. Government has become too big and ubiquitous that no amount of taxation can satisfy its continual growing needs.

We need a strong defense because we have become a prime target in the eyes of many nations in the world because of the way we exploited them.

Answer from Michael Dacquisto:

Stop the borrowing now. Do not raise the national debt. This will force Congress to make meaningful spending cuts, not just argue about reducing the annual rate of increase of spending. Because Congress had not been able to come up with intelligent spending cuts for the last 50 years, I would enact across the board spending cuts, 10% is a good number, and try to have the appropriations from Congress reduced by that amount. If that could not be done, I would seek legislation directing the managers of each department to implement a 10% cut. In private enterprise this would be easy. Under this solution, no programs are cut. Instead everything we have is just run at a reduced level.

Answer from Sam Aanestad:

I will fight to squeeze every program and every department (such as eliminating the entire Department of Education) for immediate and substantial spending cuts. I will also fight to pass the balance budget amendment so that Washington can never again put taxpayers at risk of national bankruptcy. I oppose adding any additional debt, and I oppose raising the debt ceiling.

? 3. What are your priorities with respect to our nationís energy policy? Should there be an emphasis on clean energy and reducing carbon emissions, and/or on reducing our dependence on foreign sources?

Answer from Gregory Cheadle, J.D.:

As with most "scientific" conclusions, the "science" behind the industrial revolution being responsible for global warming is inconclusive and undoubtedly suspect given the inherent bias of the sources of funding. Granted, we could do better. But until I see those who trumpet global warming live like the Quakers and Amish, I cannot and will not, give them any credence.

Answer from Sam Aanestad:

America must be energy independent. I'll fight to open up oil-rich areas for exploration, including ANWR and coastal areas. I'll also fight for an immediate reversal on Barack Obama's rejection of the Keystone Pipeline. If we have to, I'll make sure every bill going through Congress has a Keystone provision until we get that pipeline moving.

It's time we had an "Endangered Economy Act." I'll push for new laws that require any environmental decision to have an `economic impact' analysis. Those decisions that kill jobs and hurt America's energy independence must be offset by other changes that free up more jobs and more energy resources.

Answer from Pete Stiglich:

Every effort to achieve American energy independence should be pursued in order to reduce US reliance on foreign sources of supply and cut off the funding pipeline to unfriendly nations only intent on our demise as a world power. To achieve this energy independence, America must aggressively pursue all available sources of supply, including coal, oil, nuclear, solar, wind, bio-mass, etc.

Answer from Michael Dacquisto:

The emphasis must first be on reducing dependence on foreigh sources of energy/oil. Clean energy and reducing carbon emissions will come naturally, when those energy technologies are cost competitive. The government cannot make them cost competitive by throwing money at things like Solyndra. When the oil market sees this country is serious about developing its proven energy reserves the price of oil (and gas) will stabilize and then come down.

? 4. What, if any, changes should be made to federal health care policies or programs?

Answer from Sam Aanestad:

I strongly oppose Obamacare and I want my first vote in Congress to be the immediate REPEAL of Obamacare. It's unconstitutional, it's unfair to businesses owners, it's unfair to seniors, and we can't afford it. I oppose government mandating any form of healthcare coverage; businesses must be free to decide if they wish to provide this benefit as part of an overall compensation package. Real healthcare reform involves stripping predatory trial lawyers from their right to extort doctors and hospitals through a constant stream of expensive and frivolous lawsuits. Enabling insurance companies to compete against each other in the free market system will lower healthcare costs. Real tort reform will significantly cut healthcare costs. The bottom line is that I want government out of the universal healthcare business

Answer from Pete Stiglich:

First and foremost, Obamacare needs to be repealed and replaced with patient-centered, free market reforms. These reforms would include interstate competition, tort reform, medical savings accounts, medical coops, Medicaid block grant funding to states, incentives for healthy lifestyles, and a war on the massive amount of waste and fraud in Medicare and Medicaid programs.

Answer from Michael Dacquisto:

Obamacare needs to be repealed in its entirety. Insurance companies need to be able to compete across state lines. Health savings accounts need to be increased. Tort reform needs to be enacted. There are many things private industry can do to provide excellent health care. The government has no business being involved in the relationship I have with my own doctor.

Answer from Gregory Cheadle, J.D.:

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, is farce legislation because it does not protect patients nor does it make healthcare affordable. If the goal is to cover the uninsured, it would not take 2700 pages of circuitous legal/political jargon to do so. This act will do more to enslave the American people than any legislation in the history of this country.

If Obama Care is upheld by the Supreme Court, it will be sobering to imagine what government can force upon the citizens of this country. Moreover, there is nothing in place to prevent people from all over the world to enter our country illegally and take advantage of our de facto "free" healthcare for illegal aliens and those who cannot afford the premiums.

The answer to our healthcare woes is prevention, not the continual propping up of the status quo. For instance, according to a study published by the National Academies, 1.5 million people per year are harmed as a result of medication errors. In addition, nearly 200,000 people die each year in hospitals due to medical errors.

However, of far greater importance is the need to prevent illness in the first place! We cannot afford to $2.5 TRILLON in health care expenditure per year on illnesses/disease states that are preventable! We have become a nation of alcoholics, legal and illegal drug addicts, and gluttons. The epidemic plague that is sinking this country is obesity. Obesity leads to a multitude of diseases, most pronounced of which is diabetes. Diabetes leads to hypertension, heart disease, and strokes. No amount of taxation can sustain the costs we are facing as a nation due to the illnesses we suffer as a result of purposely engaging in delirious behaviors.

? 5. What, if any, changes should be made to federal rules on campaign financing?

Answer from Michael Dacquisto:

The problem is not with people giving money. Any person should be able to offer any amount of his/her money to any candidate. It is a free country. The problem arises when the candidate/office holder accepts the money. This means the person who donates the money is buying a vote. He can now ask to have the candidate/office holder vote a certain way, based on the money given. If every office holder and candidate just said no to the money offered, it would end overnight.

Answer from Pete Stiglich:

Recent Supreme Court decisions have resulted in rulings that protect campaign financing under the 1st Amendment of free speech. Therefore, given these rulings, limiting campaign financing is difficult. As a non-politicians, it is extremely difficult to compete on a 'level' playing field with incumbents and entrenched party politicians. Access to the media and the ability to achieve name recognition is difficult at best. I would support mandatory term limits be imposed to ensure highly funded career-minded politicians become a thing of the past.

Answer from Gregory Cheadle, J.D.:

The maximum contribution should be $2500 per person per election. Organized labor and corporations should not be allowed to contribute one penny to a candidate. This will force politicians to meet and communicate with their constituents and not be the pawns of business or special interest groups.


Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League.  Candidates' statements are presented as submitted. References to opponents are not permitted.

The order of the candidates is random and changes daily. Candidates who did not respond are not listed on this page.


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Created: July 26, 2012 13:02 PDT
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