Thursday, August 2, 2012

AARP's Non-Partisan Voters' Guide

Q: If Budget cuts or tax reforms are implemented in your state, how will you ensure that any such changes avoid hurting low and moderate income populations while also safeguarding the financial security of the 50+ population? Will you oppose tax and expenditure limit initiatives?

A: I favor lower taxes. The Legislature is required to balance the budget. Lowering taxes hasn't been proposed, but cuts in retirement and insurance benefits in the past have followed a simple concept, keep the promises made, and don't promise something you can't fulfill. That has decreased the benefits for new state employees (including the Legislature).

Last year I fought raising the tax on food to lower the overall sales tax rate. I felt that doing that now was a mistake. I knew too many people that didn't have enough money for food and shelter as it was. We were successful in stopping a food tax increase.

Q: What programs would you support to improve the quality and lower the cost of health care in your state?

A: Anything Utah can do to encourage free market insurance competition across state lines and to remove pre-existing conditions limitations would be helpful.

Removing the requirement of non-emergency care to be provided at emergency rooms and encouraging limitation of liability clauses and non-binding mediation alternative dispute resolutions will help lower the costs associated with medical care and will stop the defensive care practices helping fuel the upward spiral of costs.

Q: What steps would you take to assure quality, affordable health insurance for individuals and small businesses in your state? Do you support efforts to require rate reviews on unjustified health insurance premium rate increases?

A: The Supreme Court could not agree that Congress has the constitutional power to require individuals to purchase their specified health care insurance, but that Congress can tax us. I will work to continue to exclude Utah from this expansion of Federal intervention into our lives.

I will continue to work to promote free market competition. Health Savings Accounts should be encouraged and not stopped.

As someone that purchased Health Insurances as a small business owner for many years, I will continue to work to promote fairness, without more government regulation. Competitive options are needed.