1) What makes you the best candidate for the 9th District?
I know Lakewood unlike anyone else serving in an elected position in this area. I chose my Congressional headquarters to be located in Lakewood because of the centrality of its location to the rest of the west side. Since my office is in Lakewood we have our fingers on the pulse of the city, its economy, its academic life, its spiritual and social life. My office is involved with the people of Lakewood at every level of the community. We specifically located next to a seniors' center so we could be of assistance to senior citizens. We handle hundreds of cases a year for people in Lakewood on a variety of issues, including Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security, Veterans and Immigration matters. My office has been responsible for limiting train traffic through Lakewood with an unprecedented agreement involving many levels of government, many communities and many business interests. We were able to achieve rail and safety improvements which have made Lakewood a safer community. We worked with the City to save and secure the Lakewood Social Security office and assist the city on a wide range of projects. We are participants in the civic life of Lakewood and look forward to continuing the service to the people.
2) What do you see as the greatest problem for this District in the next two years?
The greatest problem is unemployment. Poverty levels are up in Lakewood because of unemployment. Foreclosures are up because of unemployment. On a national level we must create good-paying public sector jobs so that people in Lakewood will have more options for work. We need to rebuild our infrastructure and we need new ways of financing the rebuilding of America. I have proposed a means of the government creating 7,000,000 jobs, debt free, so that we can finally create the investment in our nation which is long overdue. Additionally, we must continue to help people save their homes from foreclosure. My office is very involved with that. We must continue to support the Lakewood School system so that our young people will have a quality education.
3) What is your vision for cities/suburbs like Lakewood and how will you use your position in Congress to fulfill this vision?
My vision for cities requires the Federal Government to re-institute revenue-sharing and to provide massive funds to rebuild our infrastructure. Cities need specific programs to help protect public services and public employment, to provide for health care for residents, to provide for safety, to provide for food for the needy. Each specific program can be brought forward and must be brought forward through a re-ordering of our priorities. We must stop wasteful spending on wars. We must stop blowing up bridges overseas when we should be building bridges here in the United States. I have stood strongly for peace because I realize the massive resources which war takes away from our community. The war in Iraq alone cost the 10th congressional district nearly $2 billion, according to the National Priorities Project. With the support of the people of Lakewood, I will use my office to continue to stand up and speak out for peace, to organize members of Congress to oppose war and to vote against funding for war. I will continue to lead the way toward the goals of jobs for all, health care for all, education for all, retirement security for all and peace.