I am delighted to have gotten the opportunity to get breif email based interviews with two of the 2nd District Congressional campaigns. Next in this series, is an email interview I did with Director of Operations for Republican nominee Richard Matthews campaign, Mr. Gary M. Collins.
MR Newman: If you could summarize the campaign in a single sentence, what wouldI thank Mr. Collins for his candor. Taking the time out of a busy campaign can be hectic and it's great to see that both the Matthews and Gaztañaga campaigns are able to take the time out to discuss openly with their potential constituents their views on the issues. It shows that Mr. Matthews is true to his libertarian leaning ideology and it's great to see some of his views a bit more detailed. If you'd like to learn more about the Matthews campaign, check the sidebar where I have a link to his official website.
Gary M. Collins: Promoting liberty, peace and prosperity.
MRN: If elected in November, what issue or issue set would Richard Matthews champion in Congress?
GMC: The biggest issue that Matthews would bring considerable notice on the floor of the House of Representatives concerns one of the most significant crisis of our generation: our economic troubles. Matthews is a firm believer that the 'bail-out' package, which was discussed by Ruppersberger as an 'investment', is an unethical attempt to support those on Wall Street that made horrific decisions. It is also evident that this law has not worked. The stock prices serve as a vivid example.
Matthews believes that giving citizens ownership of their own money is the solution to this problem. Increasing government spending through a 'bail-out packages' only furthers national debt and brings about greater consumer uncertainty. Matthews plans to stand firm on his campaign promise of "no new taxes". Increased taxes will simply cause a bigger problem.
MRN: What is the campaign's official opinion on the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008?
GMC: See above. There is also a entry on the home page of our website: www.richardmatthews.org
MRN: What specific types of health care reforms do you think are necessary?
GMC: Matthews says, "we need to have a more open market in health insurance, and this entails breaking the bond between employer and health coverage. Coverage is currently tied to the employer due to a quirk in wage and price controls during the Second World War. Tax incentives should be given directly to the consumer to pay for a plan that fits their needs. These incentives should not be bound to the employer any longer."
MRN: On the website, Mr. Matthews mentions his opposition to the joining of Georgia into NATO and that in general we should have minimal foreign entanglements. As such, what kind of foreign policy reforms apart from those directly associated with the War in Iraq does Mr. Matthews feel are necessary for our country?
GMC: According to Matthews, "it is time to remove ourselves from the role as policeman of the world. Defence policy should focus on protection of the United States territory, not international boarders. I support defensive missile capabilites and all measures --including mineralization -- to protect our boarder. I would like to see a planned and coordinated departure from major quantities of forward deployed troops in Europe and Asia.
Currently we spend more on defence then the rest of the world COMBINED. Surly there is room for down-sizing, and surly there is room for increased efficiencies. It is not desirable, nor can we afford our current defence posture. Change must occur."
MRN: Where in the federal budget does the Matthews campaign see the greatest potential for spending cuts?
GMC: In broad terms, Congress should not be in control of all the things that they have put themselves in charge of. Washington's spending habits are out of control, simply because they want to implement irrelevant plans for every aspect of society. Government's role, in this specific aspect, is to supply the basic needs of the citizenry.
More specifically, Matthews believes that Congress is spending way too much in Iraq. While Matthews supports giving our soilders the best funding while they are in the line of duty, he believes that the budget for this war can be shrunk by an immediate planned withdrawal of the troops. Bringing troops home + end of this war = no more spending on this subject. Under this plan, millions of billions of dollars will be saved.
MRN: What is Mr. Matthews opinion on Maryland Proposition 2, the Constitutional Amendment to legalize and limit where slots can be located?
GMC: Matthews believes in the freedom of choice for adults to do what they want to do with their earned money. If Marylanders want to gamble, they are going to gamble. Not having slots in Maryland is not going to stop them. It makes logical and financial sense for the state to allow this method of entertainment, considering the decision of surrounding states.
Although Matthews does not have an issue with Maryland legalizing slots, he does have a major problem with the current proposed amendment. Matthews does not support the idea of the Maryland Constitution stating specific locations that these slots can be placed.
MRN: If the election were held today, who would you vote for, for President?
GMC: Matthews position on the Presidential race is: "they are not concerned about my race for U.S. Congress, so I'm not too concerned about theirs". Matthews has made it public knowledge that he is not closely following the race.