Thursday, October 30, 2014

Governor election draws near

Cuccinelli runs on Republican ticket

Attorney General and former Virginia Sen. Ken Cuccinelli will represent the Republican Party in the Nov. 5 election for Virginia’s next governor.

The 45-year-old from Edison, N.J. is running on a platform of smaller government and social conservatism, according to his website.

If elected, Cuccinelli plans to create jobs by reducing the individual income tax rate from 5.75 percent to 5 percent and lowering the business tax from 6 percent to 4 percent, according to his website.

In addition to decreasing taxes, Cuccinelli’s written platform includes plans to establish a small business tax relief commission with the strategic goal of eliminating or reducing the negative effects of several taxes and loopholes promoting “crony” capitalism.

“There are a lot of people in a lot of parts of Virginia who have just dropped out of the numbers,” Cuccinelli said in an interview with the Northern Virginia Media Services editorial board. “And we want to get them back and standing on their own two feet — and with jobs.”

Along with instituting new economic policies, Cuccinelli’s written platform notes plans to increase in-state employment through new energy policies.

“We also need to find new sources of energy with nuclear, wind, solar, biomass and geothermal as part of a comprehensive energy program,” Cuccinelli said. “As governor, I want an all of the above energy strategy – one that takes advantage of all of the resources we have here in Virginia and off our shores in an environmentally safe and economically sound manner with as little government intervention as possible.”

Cuccinelli believes that less government regulation should be involved in Virginia’s healthcare system as well, according to his website.

“Our healthcare system is bloated with rules and regulations that make health insurance more expensive and care less accessible…” Cuccinelli stated in his written platform.

“While states are severely constrained by federal law, I believe that state governments can reform their markets in ways that allow more competition and better choices for
consumers.”

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Cuccinelli also promotes pro-life policies as a candidate. In an interview with The Washington Post Magazine, he said he is against abortions in all situations except for when the mother’s life is in danger.

According to his website, while Cuccinelli was a member of the Virginia Senate, he worked to end the procedure known as partial-birth abortion, establish parental consent and improve health standards in abortion facilities.

“I believe that all human life is precious, which is why I am a strong supporter of life,” Cuccinelli said.

In addition to his opposition of abortion, Cuccinelli opposes the legal marriage of homosexuals in the state of Virginia, according to his website.

“An overwhelming majority of Virginians voted in 2006 to include the definition of traditional marriage in Virginia’s constitution,” Cuccinelli said. “As attorney general, I have defended our constitution, and I will continue to do so if elected governor.”

While Cuccinelli supports government involvement in the areas of abortion and marriage, he believes that law-abiding citizens should not experience increased gun regulations, according to his website.

Cuccinelli will compete against Democrat Terry McAuliffe and Libertarian Robert Sarvis in the Nov. 5 election. For more information on Cuccinelli, visit Cuccinelli.com.

McAuliffe promotes democratic policies

Former Democratic Chairman Terry McAuliffe will represent his party on voting ballets for the Virginia governor’s election Nov. 5.

According to his website, McAuliffe’s campaign is focused on job creation throughout the commonwealth of Virginia.

His written platform states a plan to create new employment through establishing clean energy jobs in the state. McAuliffe hopes to build on-shore and offshore wind power plants in an effort to create energy for the commonwealth and develop job openings for Virginians.

“We also know we can create thousands of more jobs by encouraging energy efficiency and supporting people in making their homes and businesses more efficient,” McAuliffe said.

“These kinds of renovations employ construction workers and keep building supplies moving through the economy while saving homeowners and businesses money every month on their utility bills.”

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Along with developing jobs through environmental resources, McAuliffe’s written platform states that he will be committed to protecting Virginia’s environment and its resources through bipartisan effort.

According to his website, McAuliffe plans to create a biotech startup program. The concept would involve supplying a total of $2.5-5 million in loans to entrepreneurs, scientists and inventors hoping to attract private capital.

“In order to make Virginia a leader in the biotechnology and biomedical industries, we must leverage our academic, industrial research and scientific assets,” McAuliffe said. “The transition from proof of concept to successful business is fraught with uncertainty, and it is often difficult to acquire capital during this phase.”

McAuliffe also supports Virginia expanding its Medicaid program, according to his website. The growth of Medicaid will cover nearly 400,000 uninsured Virginians and create up to 33,000 jobs by 2021.

“If we don’t accept the money, it will simply flow to other states,” McAuliffe said. “I believe that Virginia taxpayer money should stay in Virginia.”

McAuliffe’s written platform also includes support for any form of abortion.

“I strongly believe that women should be able to make their own healthcare decisions without interference from Washington or Richmond,” McAuliffe said.

Gay marriage is another area that McAuliffe believes the government should not interfere with, according to his website.

“I believe everyone should be treated fairly … I personally favor civil marriage for committed couples of the same-sex,” McAuliffe said.

According to his website, McAuliffe spoke at the Equality Virginia Commonwealth dinner where he promised that his first executive order will relate to gay marriage.

“I want to make sure we are open and welcoming to everybody,” McAuliffe said. “You cannot do that if you put up walls around Virginia and you.”

While McAuliffe is against government involvement for the issues of abortion and gay marriage, he favors greater gun restrictions. According to Politico, Michael Bloomberg’s pro–gun-control super Political Action Committee (PAC) is providing McAuliffe with $1.1 million in ads throughout the last two weeks of his campaign.

McAuliffe’s written platform states that McAuliffe “will support mainstream and majority supported gun control measures like universal background checks, limiting the size of magazines and a return to the one-gun-per-month rule.”

McAuliffe will compete against Rep. Ken Cuccinelli and Libertarian Robert Sarvis. For more information on McAuliffe, visit terrymcauliffe.com.

Sarvis represents Libertarian views

Libertarian Robert Sarvis will challenge Rep. Ken Cuccinelli and Dem. Terry McAuliffe in the Nov. 5 election for Virginia’s next governor.

As a Libertarian, Sarvis’ written platform is in favor of lessening government regulation and involvement in a number of areas.

According to his website, if elected, Sarvis hopes to eliminate “all regulations that insulate market incumbents from competition, all government subsidies of specific industries or companies, and all special tax and regulatory treatment of particular industries or companies.”

His written platform also notes plans to eliminate discretionary funds and return the money to the taxpayers.

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“We need to root out crony capitalism and return to the rule of the law,” Sarvis said.

In addition to decreasing government regulation, Sarvis plans to initiate changes in Virginia’s tax system. He hopes to eliminate several taxes that he believes hide the cost of taxation, burden employers and reduce business activity, according to his website.

Sarvis’ written platform also includes plans to eliminate or greatly reduce the state income tax, which he believes lowers employment and take-home pay. Sarvis hopes to revise property taxes by “excluding or lowering the rate applied to improvements on land.”

As an alternative form of taxation, Sarvis wishes to create a uniform consumption tax on all final retail sales of goods and services, according to his website.

“We need to simplify and streamline the tax system so that revenue raising is transparent and least burdensome to individuals, families and businesses alike,” Sarvis said.

Another component of Sarvis’ platform is focused on education. Sarvis wishes to change the education system in a number of ways. He hopes to expand parent involvement through various methods including the expansion of charter schools.

“Parents, not politicians or bureaucrats, should be in charge of the education dollars spent on their children,” Sarvis said.

In addition to furthering parental involvement, Sarvis plans to eliminate standardized testing in schools in order to develop “actual learning,” according to his website.

Sarvis’ written platform also states that individuals should have the right to choose if they would like to have an abortion. He concludes that high regulation and mandated ultrasounds in abortion clinics should not be required by the government.

Sarvis does not support government involvement in the area of abortion, and, according to his website, he is against regulation in the area of gay marriage
as well.

“I want to lead the fight now—in this election—to recognize same-sex marriages in Virginia,” Sarvis said.

Sarvis favors lessoning government regulation and, according to his website, he believes that there is no need for increased gun control.

“Proponents of restricting our freedoms bear a heavy burden of showing the necessity, propriety and wisdom of their proposed regulations,” Sarvis said.

Sarvis’ written platform states that decreasing drug use regulations instead of increasing gun regulations will lead to a lowering of crime rates.

“I propose legalizing marijuana in Virginia, decriminalizing harder drugs and adopting a rational, evidence-based regulatory policy,” Sarvis said.

Sarvis will compete against Cuccinelli and McAuliffe for the governor’s seat in the upcoming election. For more information on Sarvis, visit robertsarvis.com.

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