Here is a systematic, 3 step approach Sam believes is extremely fair when assessing any situation:
Constitutionality. Does the proposed action violate any part of the Constitution (US and State of Maine)?
Cost. How much is this going to cost the taxpayer and how do you propose we pay for this? What will be the CONTINUED cost for this expense beyond just the cost of acquisition?
Benefit. How does this benefit the fine citizens of our great state? Are we going to get a good “return” on our “investment”?
Recently I had the opportunity to submit my answers to the 2012 BDN Political Questionnaire. Here are my responses:
On the Issues
Given the option of reducing spending or raising taxes, I’d say reduce spending. Every Maine citizen is feeling the strain of our poor economy. Realistically, there are going to have to be sacrifices made at every level of state government. Let’s work at improving existing programs that are worth fixing, and those that are not, they need to be ended.
Do you think same-sex marriage should be legal in Maine?
The State should not be in the business of defining marriage. Let consenting adults define “marriage” guided by their faith. This is a difficult issue that can create a lot of hostility. Those that support gay marriage fight for acceptance when realistically, some will never accept their behavior. Passing a law to support same-sex marriage will not change anything. If we eliminate government involvement with the definition of marriage and allow consenting adults to define marriage for themselves and enter into a legal contract, we can simplify the process. Religious institutions that do not accept that behavior do not have to perform those ceremonies. Why do we even have to get a license from the state to marry, but yet we do not require one to have children? Or is that next? I do not support Gay marriage, so I will not be getting gay married.
Do you support school choice?
Yes, parents should be in control of their child’s education. But, they should be concerned if there are hidden details with the choice. For example, if a parent home-schools but are restricted on the curriculum they must adhere to in order to qualify for government funding or relief, that is not a choice. He who pays the piper calls the tune. There is a very interesting economic study out of Chicago studying school choice. By combing through YEARS of data, economists were able to determine that school choice had nothing to do with the success of that child. What made the difference was the PARENT was involved in the process and was concerned enough about their child’s success.
Do you think Maine’s school consolidation program has been successful?
I am not able to define “success” for this question. I would love to hear from citizens that have more experience with school consolidation.
Do you think Maine should expand MaineCare as proposed by the president under the Affordable Care Act?
No. Mainers should be deciding how to take care of Mainers and should not be directed by the Federal Government. We should not be expanding the control of the Federal Government in any aspect of our lives. I believe in the 10th Amendment of the Constitution and a limited federal government. Let’s return the power to the states, where we have more control and accountability, to make these decisions.
What is the biggest thing Maine can do to attract more jobs to the state?
Reduce taxes and regulations to create an environment that is more appealing to new businesses and helps existing businesses grow. Let’s be clear, the government does not CREATE jobs but it can help facilitate (or hamper) the process through regulation. Innovation and hard work by the entrepreneur create businesses and create jobs. It also takes capital,and unfortunately, that capital is not readily available for many Maine businessmen. Building a MAINE economy is very essential. Every citizen has the chance to VOTE every day with their dollar and make a choice to invest in this state by shopping at local businesses, where they bank, and where they eat. Personally, I have made the choice of liquidating all assets from the market and investing them right here in Maine through land investment and other economic development (to include a small airport, and providing land for local farmers to utilize) – I would encourage citizens to educate themselves on the LARGER problem and that is the US MONETARY SYSTEM. Our state and our citizens are feeling the affects of a poorly managed Central Bank, The Federal Reserve, that is NOT A GOVERNMENT AGENCY. There is NO MENTION of a central bank in the United States Constitution. Since it’s inception in 1913, the value of the dollar has decreased by over 97%. Recently, “The Fed” has announced the latest round of QUANTITATIVE EASING. $40 BILLION will be created every month for an unspecified amount of time and that is after the first two rounds of QE that pumped over $2 TRILLION “into the economy”. This BAILOUT money has not gone to your or me, but has used to “buy” toxic assets such as Mortgage Backed Securities from the big banks. Also, as they increase the quantity of the money supply, the value of the dollars in your wallet goes DOWN and destroys the incentive to save. This is called INFLATION and would account to why your near constant wages seem to buy less and less goods and services (Health costs, food, gas, etc..) I encourage citizens to educate themselves on this issue and contact their Congressmen to encourage them to support an AUDIT OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE. This audit has been supported by members of Congress from ALL sides. – “If the American people knew tonight, exactly how the monetary banking system worked, there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning.” Abraham Lincoln
Do you support lowering the state income tax? What state spending would you cut to make up for the loss of revenue?
Absolutely. Reduce all state spending. Let’s start with the salary of the State Legislature. Lead from the front and set the example. Mainers are burden with taxes at every level of government. We need to promote an efficient and less intrusive government that allows the citizens to keep the fruits of their labor.
Are Maine’s public assistance benefits too generous? How should they be changed?
Yes, and also too easy to obtain. Increase the residency requirement needed to qualify and the duration of benefits. People that know me, know that I am very generous. I am not opposed to helping someone in need, but I would much rather help someone to help themselves. Given the option to handing out money over a meal, I will give them a meal. But given the option to help them provide for themselves, I would choose that option.
What should the state do to lower energy costs?
Encourage and promote efficiency and offer incentives, but leave it to the individuals and private investors to implement. I definitely support energy independence from foreign means.
Should Maine place more restrictions on abortion?
Every citizen should consider and respect the right of every individual. Abortion denies the unborn of Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.
My Opponents Questionnaire - HERE
What issues do you feel strongly about? What Concerns you most? There is only one way to be sure that the issues you care about are on the radar this election, by using your voice!
It is Your Vote, you owe it to yourself to make sure the candidates address the issues that concern you. If I have yet to cover it please do not hesitate to ask me by email at info@SamCanders.com or by using the form below. I will post the answer and then on November 6th, You Decide!