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Thu, Feb. 27

CD1 GOP candidates take aim at federal deficit

The Daily Courier is publishing biographical information about all the candidates for the 1st Congressional District and Legislative District One who are facing competition in the primary election.The newspaper also is running candidates' answers to several questions.Only Republicans are facing primary election competition in the LD1 (House) and CD1 races. Two seats are available in the LD1 House race. Early voting started July 29 and the primary election day is Aug. 24.The primary winner in the CD1 race will face incumbent Democrat U.S. Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick, and the primary winners in the LD1 race will face off against Democrat Lindsay Bell in the Nov. 2 general election. Incumbent Republican Arizona Sen. Steve Pierce also will face Democrat Bob Donahue in the LD1 Senate race.Following is the third in a series of questions The Daily Courier asked the Republican primary candidates for Arizona's 1st Congressional District. Their answers are paraphrased.Q: What measures do you support to help reduce the federal deficit?• Bradley Beauchamp - Cut spending and require a balanced budget. I support the "FairTax" concept that would replace all taxes with a single 23 percent sales tax. It includes a monthly advance tax rebate or "prebate" for each household on purchases up to the poverty level. The prices of goods would remain about the same because businesses wouldn't be paying other taxes.• Russell "Rusty" Bowers - I don't think there is a government agency that can't be cut. I haven't found one that doesn't have the 'spend it or lose it' mentality. I oppose earmarks. They drive up costs because committees don't review their costs. We also could get rid of some agencies such as the Department of Education.• Paul Gosar - Cut all agencies' overhead by 10 percent through automation, etc. Create a law that requires the retirement of two federal employees before the hiring of one. All departments would compete in the pool. Reduce taxes and regulations to create jobs. Reward good behavior.• Sydney Hay - Every cabinet secretary should list his/her priorities and costs in order, then cut low-priority items. Start a new Grace Commission with outside experts who will review government from top to bottom. Find things the feds shouldn't be doing. For example, the Department of Energy was established to make us energy-independent, but it isn't working.• Joe Jaraczewski - We need a balanced budget amendment. Drop at least 10 percent of the services not mandated by the Constitution. Reduce the Department of Education budget and get more of the remaining money to local schools. Cut the Department of Energy, too.• Jon Jensen - The U.S. Department of Education is a big waste. We need to slash it and allocate money on a per-student basis. Slash the Department of Commerce. Reduce the IRS and lower taxes. We have too much waste and bureaucracy.• Steve Mehta - Close just about every department, especially if they tell people how to do their private-sector jobs, such as the Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Education. We've abdicated a lot of authority to the feds, and now we have a huge bureaucratic life form that doesn't want to go away. The feds should protect our borders and pave interstates. The feds should give more control back to states. Reduce foreign aid. Our house is on fire and we can't continue to be the world's piggy bank.• Thomas Zaleski - The deficit is our number-one enemy, not al-Qaida. Push the budget back to 2003 levels. Squeeze out waste and abuse. Lower taxes and change the income tax to a flat tax. Higher taxes increase revenues in the short term, but then business goes overseas. Lower taxes create jobs. You cannot spend your way out of a spending problem.
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