What’s the best way for the state to encourage job creation?
Get rid of the state income tax.
Do you favor any changes in Iowa’s tax incentive programs to attract businesses or encourage job creation?
I believe such programs violate the foundational principle of equal protection under the law, and amount to crony capitalism, i.e., state socialism. Our laws and public policies should equally protect, and benefit, all, not just a favored few. That's why instead I advocate the elimination of the state income tax, to create an economic tide that would lift all boats. States like South Dakota, Texas, Florida and others have demonstrated the wisdom of this approach.
Do you favor any specific changes in how Iowa regulates businesses?
I support regulation that fulfills a legitimate state interest in protecting the health and welfare of the people. All other regulations, especially those whose purpose is mere social engineering, should be eliminated as quickly as possible.
Do you support any changes to Iowa laws governing requirements to gain and maintain occupational licenses?
I support licensing that fulfills a legitimate state interest in protecting the health and welfare of the people. However, I think all licensing that is purely protectionist, i.e., merely to protect members of certain industries, should be done away with. Perhaps in the latter case we could look at some sort of optional state or private certifications as a service to those industries and their customers.
Should Iowa raise the minimum wage?
No. I don’t think there should be a minimum wage. Such laws are outside the legitimate bounds of government, because they violate private property rights and the rights of free association and private contracts.
TAXES AND SPENDING
What one or two areas of state government would be the highest priority for spending cuts if they are needed?
The majority of our state budget goes to education. I want to get the state and national governments out of the education business, and restore what I call T.L.C., or True Local Control, over our schools. That means that we need to completely overhaul our state tax system, leaving those dollars at home, because the money is the means of control. It makes no sense for us to continue to send our education dollars to Des Moines and Washington, D.C., where they run those dollars through a huge bureaucracy before sending a little bit back with strings attached. Bureaucrats do not teach or care for children. Parents, churches, communities, and teachers teach children.
Would you push for any changes in the state’s tax structure, including personal or corporate income taxes, sales taxes, property taxes, or other taxes?
All income taxes should be eliminated. All direct taxes on businesses should be eliminated. Businesses ultimately don’t pay taxes anyway. They simply pass the costs on to the consumer. If they didn’t, they would be out of business. All property taxes should remain in the counties. We can meet all of our legitimate state constitutional duties with sales and excise taxes.
Do you favor an increase in the gas tax to finance highway and bridge work?
No. We have plenty of money in the system now. It must, to put it simply, be spent more wisely.
Should Iowa address its child care “cliff,” where working-poor families can abruptly lose child-care assistance when their income rises slightly?
I don’t think the state should be involved in child care. That is the legitimate responsibility of parents and our communities, not the State of Iowa.
Do you favor retaining or working to repeal same-sex marriage in Iowa?
Our law concerning marriage in Iowa remains one man and one woman. That law is what should be enforced.
Do you favor any changes in abortion laws in Iowa?
The practice of human abortion violates the most fundamental natural law principles of the Declaration of Independence, destroying the concept of God-given, unalienable rights, as it destroys the individual child. It violates every single clause of the stated purposes of the United States Constitution. It violates the explicit, imperative requirements of the Fifth, the Eighth, and the Fourteenth Amendments, most notably that each individual person, in every jurisdiction, be provided with the equal protection of our laws. It also violates Article One, Section One, of the Iowa Constitution, which clearly recognizes the intrinsic nature of the individual right to live.
Do you favor any changes in gun laws in Iowa?
I support the passage of Constitutional Carry legislation, which will remove any and all impediments to our Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms.
Does the public education Iowa students receive meet your definition of “world class”? If not, please address steps for improvement.
The quality of our public education in Iowa continues to ebb, as parents, those with the primary duty to raise their children, lose control over the educational process. This degradation should surprise no one with any rudimentary understanding of human nature and history. People simply do not take ownership of that which they do not control.
Do you think the Iowa Core Curriculum is rigorous enough?
The Iowa Core Curriculum is an ill-conceived power grab, and it is vastly deficient. If you want an education that is rigorous, perhaps you could reinstate the requirements to graduate from the eighth grade that were in place in our one-room schoolhouses more than a century ago.
Should Iowa rescind its adoption of the Common Core state standards?
Yes. We can’t do it fast enough to suit me.
Are teacher salaries high enough?
That should be a decision that is made by local parents and taxpayers.
Do you think Iowa’s K-12 public schools, community colleges and state universities are adequately funded? Please address each.
Again, I want the state and national governments out of the education business. In an age in which we have instant access, at the click of a mouse, to vast stores of information and knowledge, our current system, bloated to excess by taxpayer dollars, makes no practical sense.
Should parents who choose to educate their children in private or religious schools or at home receive vouchers or tax breaks from the state?
Should Iowa expand efforts to ensure every child can attend free preschool if their parents want them to do so?
Should Iowa make any changes in its approach to implementing the Affordable Care Act, often called Obamacare?
Obamacare, and therefore Iowa’s implementation of it, is blatantly unconstitutional. It should be dismantled, nationally and in our state, before it does any more damage.
Please give a letter grade to Iowa’s redesign of its mental health care system. Is the system adequately funded?
At this point I don’t know, lacking as I do the resources of the governor’s office to explore the question. I believe that the State of Iowa does have a legitimate role in this area, and that we should make every effort to assure a humane, decent, efficient system is in place.
Do you favor changing Iowa law to allow use of marijuana to treat medical conditions if a patient’s doctor approves?
Within very tight limits, yes. For example, the State of Utah recently passed legislation allowing the specific use of an extract for the treatment of those with severe epilepsy. I would sign such legislation as governor.
Is the state’s oversight of emergency medical services adequate?
At this point I don’t know, lacking as I do the resources of the governor’s office to explore the question.
Do you think Iowa’s efforts to improve water quality in lakes, rivers and streams are adequate?
I think they are more than adequate.
Do you think Iowa’s efforts to protect air quality are adequate?
Do you favor local control over siting of large livestock facilities?
Disciplinary taken actions against public employees are generally public records, but should there be a requirement to disclose the reason for the discipline to the public?
No, I don’t think so, not unless the offense is of a criminal nature.
Should the Iowa Juvenile Home be reopened?
Yes. It is a perfectly good facility, one that we’ve spent millions of dollars on, located in a great community that has a long history of devotion to the kids.
Does state government have too few, too many or about the right number of at-will employees, who can be fired without cause?
Should fireworks be legalized in Iowa?