We met with Andrew Heaney, a Republican candidate for congress in our 19th Congressional District, in February. What follows is an edited condensation of our talk. We will be interviewing other candidates for the 19th Congressional seat over the election season and updating candidate news.
Andrew Heaney- an interview
Q- Tell us what you would like our readers to know about you.
H- First, I’m not a politician. I’m a small business owner, asked to run by local leaders. (H regards John Faso as his most serious primary opponent. H is characterizing Faso as a career politician.)
Q- What do you think is the most important issue facing the country?
H- Economic stagnation and devastation. The answer lies in small business, the driving engine of the economy. I am motivated by my children , who are 10, 6 and 3. Looking ahead, I don’t like what I’m seeing, student debt and deficits. No one has given a thought to planning how we can stop running deficits. There is a lack of growth. In many areas the economy is in terrible shape. There is a lack of opportunities for young people…
ISIS and radical Islamic fundamentalism concerns me greatly. The present administration has given us no real answers; there is a lack of leadership….
I will pledge to abide by a three term limit. I challenge my opponents to make a similar pledge. They won’t because if you are a career politician, you want job security.
How do you differentiate yourself from other Republicans who are running for the same congressional seat – John Faso and Bob Bishop?
H- I am not an insider; I have a background in the working economy. I am not part of a broken political system. I know how small business works and small business is what is needed to get the economy working again. I am not a Keynsian. I don’t think government spending is the way to stimulate the economy. I want to simplify the tax code, free up small business. That will be the driving force. I want to reduce withholding on low and medium income earners, giving the consumer a break.
Q- What is your stand on gun control?
H- I am a believer in the Second Amendment; I favor Federal protection of the right to own guns. I am a gun owner. I don’t think using the no fly list should be used to screen gun ownership because the list is not accurate.
Q – What is your view on a woman’s right to choose?
H - That’s a moral obligation issue. I’m against federal funding of abortions, I’m against late term abortions; I would favor a law outlawing late term abortions but I am not seeking to overturn Roe v. Wade.
Q – Do you have a stand on immigration?
H- I think securing the borders is a first, absolutely necessary step. You can’t talk about immigration unless the borders are secure.
A – What about the broad social issues like social security, Medicare and Medicaid?
H- These issues all relate to the deficit. First, repeal Obamacare – it’s a disaster- it has impacted small business, keeping them from expanding; its gives small business incentives to cut hours back – it gives the wrong incentives – it’s seriously negative; it limits access to services and increases premiums. And Obamacare is a huge factor on deficit spending.
On entitlements, we need leadership. We need commonsense adjustments; there is no realistic plan to make social security really secure.
Q- What about our infrastructure which everyone agrees needs attention?
H - We know the needs but the government doesn’t have the money. We can, however, tap the private capital markets. The money is there, it just needs the right incentives.
Q – What is you position on privacy and the government’s need to know to combat terrorism?
H- The government must keep us safe but also respect privacy under the bill of rights. Basically, I am a Homeland Security hawk. At bottom, the needs to keep us safe outweigh the right to privacy. But I do agree that the government does not need to store all the information they are now collecting.
My campaign office is in Hyde Park.
You can reach me at www.heaneyforcongress.com
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