Name: Jeff Anderson
Current employment: Candidate for Congress
Public office experience: Former president, Duluth City Council; former president, Duluth Economic Development Authority.
Party affiliation: Democratic Farmer Labor party
What actions should Congress take to reduce the federal deficit and strengthen Social Security and Medicare?
The first step is to allow the Bush tax cuts to expire. In previous times of war, we have increased taxes to help pay for our efforts. In the case of our current conflicts in the Middle East, not only did we not raise taxes, we decreased collections on the wealthy. If we need something, we should have the honesty to say how we’ll pay for it. I believe Medicare and Social Security are not entitlements, but benefits earned, and as long as I am in Congress, I will make sure people receive what they are owed.
What role should the U.S. play in a world where unrest is changing the political balance in many nations?
As the only veteran in this primary, military issues are a focus of my campaign. While Rick Nolan believes military spending should be cut by 50 percent by 2015, I recognize this nice sounding campaign promise would have a terrible economic impact on Fort Ripley. The base would be decimated by such a poorly thought out plan.
That said, we can economize, and I think it starts with attempting to use diplomatic channels before starting wars of choice. By limiting our investment in international nation building, we can re-dedicate our focus to rebuilding our own crumbling infrastructure.
What domestic priorities would you set as your highest priorities?
We need to create more livable wage jobs through the district so we can stop outsourcing our kids to better job markets. Expanding broadband access and repairing roads and bridges throughout the district will create opportunities for business to relocate to greater Minnesota. And when we have more opportunities for kids to remain home after graduation, they can be the ones who help lead us out of the current troubling economic times to the next generation of northern Minnesota prosperity. A better future is within reach. And it starts with creating more economic opportunities here in the Eighth District.