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Q: Address: A: PO Box 26661 Winston-Salem, NC 27114
Q: How long have you lived in the 12th district of North Carolina? A: I have lived in Winston-Salem for 16 years. I live just outside the 12th district
Q: Family A: I am married with 2 daughters, ages 20 and 17
Q: Education: A: AA in Computer Science at Pensacola Junior College, BA in Systems Science/Business at the University of West Florida
Q: Previous political experience: A: None
Q: Previous professional experience: A: I have worked in the computer industry for several companies since graduating from college in 1984. I could am working at a computer storage specialist.
Q: Community, Political and Religious organizations in which you are involved: A: I am a member of Legacy Community Church. I am currently president and have served on the board in various capacities of the Rince na h'Eireann Parents Association which is affiliated with a local Irish dance school in Charlotte, Huntersville and Winston-Salem, NC. I was also on president and served on the board of the Triad Ice Skating Club
Q: Your campaign website address: A: www.cumbieforcongress.com
Q: Why are you running for Congress? A: First and foremost, politics is about you and me and our families. Our elected officials must keep families first in all decisions that are made. The Declaration of Independence states that governments are instituted to secure our rights. Government's first responsibility is to insure that our rights and our freedoms, both individual and family, are protected. At the same time, government should maintain a framework to insure that businesses, and we the owners and employees of those businesses, can prosper, allowing us to care for our families as we feel best. As we have clearly seen in recent years, government is not keeping families first. Government is not securing our rights. Government is not allowing businesses and individuals to prosper. Instead, government has become hostile to individuals, families, businesses, and anyone who dares stand up for the freedoms and rights that are our American inheritance. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the historic unemployment levels, and the continued reach of government into our lives and businesses. That is why I am running for Congress in the 12th District. For too long, Mel Watt has enjoyed this seat without meeting the needs of the people he represents. When elected, I promise to stand firm for the people of this district, and their concerns. The three issues that I continue to hear as the most important are Jobs; Taxes, Spending and the Federal Debt; and Healthcare. These are the issues that the next Congress must address if we are to return this country to its economic and political dominance. I expand on these issues on my website, www.cumbieforcongress.com, and urge you to visit to find out more about me, and my plans to help families and businesses in North Carolina.
Q: What are the greatest challenges facing people who live in the 12th district of North Carolina and what would you do to address those challenges that would make voters choose you? A: Jobs
As I have listened to those who live in the 12th district, it has been made very clear to me that the three most important issues to North Carolinians are: 1. Jobs 2. Jobs 3. Jobs As an employee myself, I would agree. Nevertheless, we have watched over the past year as Congress has focused its attention on the wrong priorities. They have been: • Passing an $800 billion stimulus bill which did not work; unemployment has climbed to 10%. • Passing legislation to bailout large companies that were in trouble while ignoring the economic impact on smaller businesses, especially family businesses. • Trying to force through a monstrosity of a healthcare bill that will make healthcare more expensive and more difficult to obtain. With the official unemployment rate in NC at 11.1% (and the unofficial rate closer to 20%), Congress should be focusing its attention, first and foremost, on job creation. Congress is under the mistaken belief that we can spend our way to prosperity. This mistaken belief has created a $14 trillion debt. This debt has drained our economy of money that could create jobs and prosperity for all of us.
Federal Debt and Taxes
For the first time in the history of our country, we are experiencing yearly deficits that are greater than $1 trillion. To put this number into perspective, if you spent $1.4 million a day, every day, starting the day that Jesus was born, it would have taken you until the 1950s to have spent a total of $1 trillion. To make matters worse, this year our total national debt will approach $14 trillion dollars.
When Congress talks about fiscal responsibility, they usually discuss cutting our deficit, but they rarely say anything about what we need to do with our debt. The national debt is the more important problem. The larger debt grows, the more of our tax money goes to paying interest on that debt.
The Democrat solution to cutting the deficit is usually to do two things: tax the rich and tax the corporations. The dirty little secret is that you and I end up paying these extra taxes.
When Democrats raise taxes on the rich, they encourage the rich to hire lawyers and accountants to find ways to shelter their money and they encourage the rich to move their money out of the country where it cannot be taxed. When taxes are raised on corporations, corporations are forced to either pass the taxes onto their customers (us) by raising their prices or cutting costs. One of the ways that businesses have cut their costs over the past two decades has been to move jobs and manufacturing out of the country. So, in the end, you and I that end up paying extra taxes through higher prices or lost jobs.
The solution is not just to lower taxes, but we must seriously consider completely eliminating the federal income tax. If all personal and business income taxes were eliminated, then we could expect the following to immediately happen:
1. Jobs would immediately become available. Since businesses would not have to pay taxes on income, they would have more money available to invest back into their business which would result in more jobs. 2. Jobs that had been moved out of the country, including manufacturing jobs, would begin moving back into the US. 3. Money that "the rich" have moved out of the country would come back into the US. This money would then be available for small business investments and would cause interest rates to go down. 4. Individuals would not have taxes taken out of their paychecks; we would have more money available to pay off debt, or to purchase products. In both cases, even more jobs would be created. Taxes are necessary to pay for the activities of any government. When a government takes too much from its people in taxes, the people suffer. As John Marshall once stated in the Supreme Court case McCulloch v. Maryland, "The power to tax is the power to destroy."
It has amazed me to watch as the current Democrats in Congress have tried all sorts of tactics to pass their wildly unpopular healthcare bill. If this bill is finally forced through Congress and is signed into law so that the government is able to take control of the healthcare industry, we can expect the following to happen:
• The cost of healthcare will go up • The quality of healthcare will go down • Access to healthcare will be limited and will be more difficult for any of us to see a doctor
The current healthcare bill fails to address the most important issue. Most arguments for this bill revolve around providing insurance for people who are currently uninsured and controlling costs. However, these are merely symptoms of a larger problem. Congress has yet to diagnose the real problem.
So, what is the proper diagnosis?
The underlying problem of healthcare is high costs. Congress should focus on reducing the cost of healthcare, not on controlling the cost. History and experience shows us that when any government tries to control the cost of a product of service, that product or service becomes more difficult to find and its quality goes down. If Congress attempts to control the cost of healthcare, we can expect the same: costs will go up, quality will go down, and care will be rationed.
So, how do you reduce the cost of healthcare without controlling the cost? As any decent high school economics textbook will tell you, there are two ways to reduce the cost of a product or service:
1. Increase the supply of the product or service. In the case of healthcare, if supplies of doctors, nurses, physician's assistants, medical facilities, hospital beds, etc. are increased, competition will increase. This will result in lower costs. 2. Reduce taxes and regulations. When a regulation requires doctors to do something or not to do something, the regulation creates costs that doctors must pass on to their patients. The same is true with taxes. Taxes that doctors pay to run their practices must be passed on to patients. Reducing excessive regulations and reducing taxes will result in lower costs for doctors and lower costs for the patient. If we want to reduce the cost of healthcare, it is imperative that Congress focus its attention on encouraging more people to pursue careers as doctor, nurse, etc. by eliminating unnecessary regulations that drive up costs.
Q: What are the first changes you would work to implement if you are elected? A: Please See details in the previous question above: 1. Eliminate our current income tax system and replace it with something like the FairTax. This will spur unprecedented economic growth and create private sector jobs. 2. Create real health care reform by repealing the existing health care bill, removing unnecessary regulations and burdens from the health care industry, and allowing the health care industry the freedom to compete which will result in lower costs. 3. Cut spending by reviewing all departments and programs in order to eliminate or transition those departments and programs to the states that Congress is not authorized to create according to the Constitution. Develop a plan to reduce and finally eliminate all federal debt.
Q: What prior experience do you have that best prepares you for this office? A: I have worked in the business world since I was a teenager. I understand the struggles of small and large businesses and, as an employee, myself, I understand the struggles of employees. Like the average American, I have more practical experience than most that are currently in Congress.
Q: What is the toughest criticism you think you will face in this election, and what is your response to that criticism? A: I have no political experience. One of the problems we have in Washington is that our government is full of career politicians and beaurocrats. We need Congress to be made up of common people who are working for the people and not special interests.