Wednesday, April 19, 2017

The Utah Republican Women's Liberty Caucus Q and A

The Utah Republican Women's Liberty Caucus Q and A
What is the proper role of government?
We specifically limited Government by the US and Utah Constitutions, but there are obvious areas where we need Government. Driving from our home to downtown, wouldn't happen without it. It has to provide basic infrastructure. There needs to be basic security. We have the option of deciding we do or we do not want something, such as a county theater in Taylorsville, or proving basic safety and having enough jail cells available vs a "catch and release" policy. We get to decide and we may not all agree. That is OK.
How do you plan to help candidates?
Candidates need some money and lots of volunteers. Over the years, I have primarily helped by volunteering. The Party organization should be a great source of volunteers and has been in the past, but not as much recently. That needs to change.
What are you going to do to improve the caucus registration and check in system? (Some people believe it takes too long. Many people have to re-register to vote, even if they have already recently registered?)
The Counties and the State Party have not been cooperating re: data. Salt Lake County tried something in 2016 that simply didn't work. I still do not have a list of the attendees for my district.
I was very involved when the SCC set up pre-registration for caucus night, along with Same Day Ballots for Fire Fighters, Police, Mom's with Sick Kids, etc. We can use simple methods and not a one size fits all method.
How can we ensure that party election results are more accurate and mistakes are avoided?
Mistakes can easily be avoided when we make counting simple. I was 2 votes shy of getting out of convention last year for the Utah Legislature Primary, but everyone knew the results at the same time as they were counted in front of us. We were able to find the "extra" delegate prior to the voting and remove their ballot, by simply counting off prior to voting. Jake Parkinson ran my House District election. It worked for 70 delegates. We make things too complicated when we don't have to.
How do you plan to protect the privacy of voting registration records and personally identifiable information?
There has to be a balance between getting information to voters and protecting privacy. Changes have been made in the last few years.
What does party loyalty mean to you?
Party loyalty is based on good principles and should not void voting our conscience. Normally I get to the bottom of the ballot and had voted for all R's, but sometimes a D. This was the first year I had to go for write-ins, unaffiliated candidates, and 3rd party as well as D's to fill up my ballot. Yes, the majority of my votes were for Republicans, but I was not impressed with some of the options. 
I voted for or against thousands of bills for 4 legislative sessions. I didn't vote yes or no because of the sponsor or their party.
Do you support the caucus system? 
Yes. I have been on the front lines for several years for fighting to protect it.
For more info:
Do you support SB54 in its current legal form?
2014 SB 54 was a bad bill to start with. I was not in the Utah Legislature the year it passed but spoke against it for months prior to passage.
Was the original version of SB114 an acceptable solution to the perceived problems with SB54? 
No! 2017 SB 114 sailed through the Senate and was scheduled to be voted on a Monday morning prior to my writing the House Committee Sunday night. It was off the agenda within hours.
Some problems of the bill passed by the Senate I sent to the House Committee: Under SB 114, the filing deadline will move from March, a week after the end of the legislative session to the 5th working day of January. Obviously there are pros and cons to this change. I believe there will be a public backlash about the change of the filing deadline. It takes away any accountability from the legislature. If members of the House voted to do one thing and the voters didn't like it, the deadline to file to run as a candidate against an officeholder has passed and you will see voters cry foul. Perhaps that is the intent.
No Majority winner. 35% ?  The whole point in dealing with plurality is to get a majority winner that a party could stand behind. This doesn't do that.
Do you believe that the lawsuit should continue until SB54 is repealed in its entirety?
The lawsuit has caused heartburn for those wanting to raise money for the party, but most of that money has been spent and pulling out now would leave us in a worse position. Having an outside group deal with any more costs helps. People forget that one of the main pieces of SB 54 was struck down by the Court and has been repealed. Others are still in the process.
Do you support Our Schools Now?
No. A 17.5% income tax increase is not the answer, especially when there is no limit to what is spent on Higher Education which can be spent by the same Education Fund. If the Legislature doesn't fund Higher Education to the level the Regents want, (and put some more back for K-12 Public Education), the Regents simply raise tuition and blame the legislature. That must change. We also do not spend all the $4.84 Billion in the best way, with much of it not getting to the classroom.
If you have held this (or another) party office in the past, how was your meeting attendance and did you help with the party work?
I have been a member of the SCC since 2011 and have had perfect attendance since 2010. I also have one of the best attendance records for the Utah Legislature in the years I served.