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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
Alameda, Contra Costa County, CA November 6, 2012 Election
Smart Voter

Eric Swalwell
Answers Questions

Candidate for
United States Representative; District 15


The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of California Education Fund and asked of all candidates for this office.
Read the answers from all candidates (who have responded).

Questions & Answers

1. In this time of high unemployment, what are the most important steps that should be taken to improve our nationís economy?

America's comeback starts with new energy and a strong resurgence in American innovation and manufacturing. This includes rewarding companies that create jobs in America and penalizing companies, in the form of higher taxes, for moving jobs overseas; provide research and development loans, grants, tax credits, and incentives to facilitate the successful development, manufacturing and exporting of clearn energy systems; support small business owners by ensuring the self-employer's tax contribution is no higher than an employee's and defer all federal government taxes for the first year of any new small business -- deferred taxes will be collected over a four-year payback period; create a fairer tax code to make big corporations and the rich pay their fair share.

2. How should the federal budget deficit be addressed, now and into the future? How should budget priorities for defense and domestic programs be adjusted?

If we are to stabilize the economy we must stop wasteful government spending and reduce our national debt. Debt reduction must be balanced with the need for government spending on programs that care for our elderly and neediest citizens and programs that protect and defend our nation. The Pentagon is currently working on a budget that will reduce military and defense spending, which I agree with, for the most part. I do not agree with cutting already-promised health care and benefits to our Veterans and current active duty military personnel. We must also look at shoring up Social Security for the long term, including raising the cap on wages and raising the retirement age gradually to index to life expectancy rates.

3. What are your priorities with respect to our nationís energy policy? Should there be an emphasis on clean energy and reducing carbon emissions, and/or on reducing our dependence on foreign sources?

Clean energy innovation is a top priority for me. I believe the US must adopt a sensible national renewable energy policy with clear goals for reducing pollution and our dependence on dirty and outdated energy systems. We should facilitate the successful development, manufacturing and exporting of clean energy systems. This includes research and development loans and grants and tax credits and incentives. Not only will these new, clean energy systems reduce carbon emissions and help clean our environment, this could be the biggest engine of next-generation technology and manufacturing -- and the US should be reaping the economic benefits of the clean energy industry. We must also do more to develop alternative energy sources to reduce our dependence on oil.

4. What, if any, changes should be made to federal health care policies or programs?

I support the recently enacted Federal Health Care Reform legislation which is already providing relief to millions of American families in the form on continued health care insurance coverage for children until the age of 26. However, there is much more we can do to hold down health care costs. As a member of the Alameda County Fire Commission, we have created a pilot project that provides drop-in preventative health care services to the public at our firestations. We need to look at more creative ways to reach those without health insurance and provide low-cost preventative services to avoid higher cost care later.

5. What, if any, changes should be made to federal rules on campaign financing?

I am opposed to the Citizens United decision by the US Supreme Court that ruled corporations have a right to free speech and can provide unlimited funding to campaigns in the form of Super PACS.

Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League.  Candidates' statements are presented as submitted. References to opponents are not permitted.

Read the answers from all candidates (who have responded).

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: September 9, 2012 17:32
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