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Voters Guide US Congress Nov. 4, 2014 General Election

Voters’ Guide November 4, 2014 West Virginia General Election

This candidate information is brought to you by the League of Women Voters of West Virginia as a public service. Candidate responses are printed exactly as received, including spelling, grammar and content. Candidates’ responses were limited to 60 words.

CANDIDATES FOR UNITED STATES SENATE

CANDIDATE: BOB HENRY BABER

Party: Mountain

County of Residence: Gilmer

Biography

I am the father of four children. As Mayor of Richwood I secured 5 million in grants to clean up the Cherry River and promote tourism and jobs. I am a Kellogg Fellow, a recipient of a National Wilderness Society Hero Award, and a widely recognized Appalachian artist and writer. As a Professor of English, I directed the WV Veterans (exceeded word limit)

1. What action by Congress would you favor to address concerns about the environmental effects of natural gas extraction, particularly the process of fracking?

Response: In God We Trust—all others we scrutinize. Frackers should have disclose all chemicals used in the process, where they draw from, and dispose of, water used, and report where they are dumping radioactive tailings.

2. Do you favor legislation to amend the Voting Rights Act to prevent states from adopting restrictive laws that make registering and voting difficult for large numbers of legally eligible voters? Explain.

Response: I support increasing Voting Rights and including legitimate balloted candidates in debates. I have been barred from the October 7th “Fake Debate” between Capito and Tennant. This is undemocratic and insulting to the voters of WV. Big money in contaminating our elections.

3. What measures would you support to address the growing income disparity among Americans?

Response: Raise the minimum wage to $10 per hour, which will stimulate the economy and assist the working poor. We need to promote education from Headstart through college and keep the Pell grant program intact. Vocational education programs tied to industries’ needs (and societies, re: carpenters, plumbers, etc.) should be vigorously promoted. We should not subsidize exporting jobs overseas.

CANDIDATE: JOHN S. BUCKLEY

Party: Libertarian

County of Residence: Hardy

Biography

Former Member, Virginia House of Delegates, 1980-81; retired from United States Court of Federal Claims, Acting Clerk of Court, Chief of Staff to Chief Judge; Electoral College, 1980, pledged to Ronald Reagan; Homeowner, Hardy County, WV, since 2002; native of New Orleans, Louisiana; J.D., College of William and Mary; 10-time marathon finisher; for more information, see JohnBuckley.org.

1. What action by Congress would you favor to address concerns about the environmental effects of natural gas extraction, particularly the process of fracking?

Response: We do not need new laws, especially at the federal level, to vindicate property rights violations that may arise from natural gas extraction. Regulatory agencies invariably get “captured” by the very interests they were created to monitor. A vigorous judiciary, attentive to the property rights of those injured by environmental degradation, can best protect private and public interests.

2. Do you favor legislation to amend the Voting Rights Act to prevent states from adopting restrictive laws that make registering and voting difficult for large numbers of legally eligible voters? Explain

Response: Such legislation is unnecessary. Of course registration and voting should be kept simple, just as photo identification should be required to ensure voting integrity. While we’re on the subject of elections: 1) debates on public television should include all candidates on the ballot; 2) voters, don’t waste your vote on someone you don’t really like just to stop someone else.

3. What measures would you support to address the growing income disparity among Americans?

Response: No more corporate bail-outs and subsidies, no crony capitalism. Big Government paternalism is inevitably the path to prosperity for the well-connected in the name of serving the poor. The “War on Poverty” has enriched a lot of bureaucrats, but ensnared millions of Americans in the trap of government dependency. Free enterprise facilitates upward mobility.

CANDIDATE: SHELLEY MOORE CAPITO

Party: Republican

County of Residence: Kanawha

Candidate did not reply

CANDIDATE: PHIL HUDOK

Party: Constitution

County of Residence: Randolph

Candidate did not reply

CANDIDATE: NATALIE TENNANT

Party: Democratic

County of Residence: Kanawha

Biography

Growing up as the youngest of seven on our family farm, I learned how to do more with less. I brought those West Virginia values to the Secretary of State’s office, where I cut the budget and gave $3 million back to taxpayers. I’m running to bring those values to the Senate and put West Virginia first – www.natalietennant.com.

1. What action by Congress would you favor to address concerns about the environmental effects of natural gas extraction, particularly the process of fracking?

Response: I support our booming natural gas industry and I know we can grow natural gas jobs safely and responsibly with input from local communities. We must also find ways to create even more jobs using our natural gas right here in West Virginia after it’s extracted. Bringing cracker plants to West Virginia is the first step.

2. Do you favor legislation to amend the Voting Rights Act to prevent states from adopting restrictive laws that make registering and voting difficult for large numbers of legally eligible voters? Explain

Response: Generations of veterans have fought to defend our democracy, including the right to vote. As Secretary of State, I have worked hard to make sure that all eligible West Virginians have the opportunity to have their voice heard and cast a ballot. I oppose laws that stand in the way of legally eligible Americans exercising their right to vote.

3. What measures would you support to address the growing income disparity among Americans?

Response: Anyone who works 40 hours a week should be able to put food on the table. It’s time for Washington to follow West Virginia’s lead and raise the minimum wage. I will also work to end tax breaks for corporations that ship jobs overseas and invest in giving American workers the quality education and job training they need to succeed.

CANDIDATES FOR US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 1ST DISTRICT

CANDIDATE: GLEN GAINER

Party: Democratic

County of Residence: Wood

Biography

Glen has served as West Virginia’s Auditor since 1992. His focus on common-sense, bipartisan solutions saved West Virginia families hundreds of millions in tax dollars and upgraded the state’s bond rating during tough economic times. He introduced a direct deposit payroll system that reduced costs and saved money; created accountability measures and training programs to ensure bills were paid on time.

1. What action by Congress would you favor to address concerns about the environmental effects of natural gas extraction, particularly the process of fracking?

Response: It is vital that we work with and support the emerging natural gas industry as this means new jobs and tax revenue for West Virginia. In doing so we do have to be mindful of any potential environmental impacts resulting from the tracking process. This means partnering with the industry to ensure safety standards are maintained rather than imposing burdensome (exceeded word limit)

2. Do you favor legislation to amend the Voting Rights Act to prevent states from adopting restrictive laws that make registering and voting difficult for large numbers of legally eligible voters? Explain.

Response: Yes, the right to vote is fundamental to our democracy and states should in no way be permitted to enact laws which restrict the rights of legally eligible voters.

3. What measures would you support to address the growing income disparity among Americans?

Response: The first thing we need to do is raise the minimum wage in this country. Doing so will help lift countless working West Virginian’s out of poverty and help them support their families. We also need to make every effort to support local businesses, helping them grow and create jobs here in our communities.

CANDIDATE: DAVID B. MCKINLEY

Party: Republican

County of Residence: Ohio

Candidate did not reply

CANDIDATES FOR US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, 2ND DISTRICT

CANDIDATE: NICK CASEY

Party: Democratic

County of Residence: Kanawha

Candidate did not reply

CANDIDATE: DAVY JONES

Party: Libertarian

County of Residence: Berkeley

Biography

My family hails from Oak Hill, WV. My Grand fathers were both coal miners. I have a Computer Science degree and have worked in the computer industry for over 20 years. I currently work as a network engineer and I am a National Guard veteran. I am running for office because I am concerned about the country my children will inherit.

1. What action by Congress would you favor to address concerns about the environmental effects of natural gas extraction, particularly the process of fracking?

Response: We must restore property rights to the people. The EPA only fines it doesn’t compensate the victims of pollution. We must also remove the “corporate shield” from those who purposely or through negligence pollute. By removing this barrier then they can be held personally responsible and would be much more diligent in managing their company.

2. Do you favor legislation to amend the Voting Rights Act to prevent states from adopting restrictive laws that make registering and voting difficult for large numbers of legally eligible voters? Explain.

Response: The biggest problem our country faces in voting today is voter fraud. We must be more diligent to insure all elections are performed in a fair and balance way. We must insist on voter photo identification to ensure voting integrity; and reform of laws that infringe on independents and third-parties from full participation in the electoral process.

3. What measures would you support to address the growing income disparity among Americans?

Response: People want to work but the current system rewards people for not working. Our economy has been severely damage by too much government regulation and interference. The federal government can correct this problem through tax cuts, deregulation, and decentralization. Our bad economy and income disparity is directly linked to too much government.

CANDIDATE: ALEX X. MOONEY

Party: Republican

County of Residence: Jefferson

Candidate did not reply

CANDIDATE: ED RABEL

Party: Independent

County of Residence: Lincoln

Candidate did not reply

CANDIDATES FOR US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES STATES, 3RD DISTRICT

CANDIDATE: EVAN JENKINS

Party: Republican

County of Residence: Cabell

Biography

I’ve had the privilege of representing the citizens of Cabell and Wayne counties in the legislature. Working together, in a bipartisan manner, we’ve cut taxes, balanced the state budget, reduced the state’s unfunded liabilities, attracted jobs, supported education and fought for quality health care. My wife and I have three children and live in Huntington. www.evanjenkins.com

1. What action by Congress would you favor to address concerns about the environmental effects of natural gas extraction, particularly the process of fracking?

Response: West Virginia is an energy producing state that powers America. Unfortunately, the Obama/Rahall Carbon Tax is a ‘War on Coal’ and causing thousands of West Virginians to lose their jobs. I’ll never turn my back on hard working West Virginians. Gas exploration is growing and I support an ‘all of the above’ energy that creates jobs and protects the environment.

2. Do you favor legislation to amend the Voting Rights Act to prevent states from adopting restrictive laws that make registering and voting difficult for large numbers of legally eligible voters? Explain.

Response: I firmly believe every law-abiding American citizen has a constitutionally protected and guaranteed right to vote that must not be infringed upon or limited. I have helped lead the effort at the state level to enact early voting laws to make voting more convenient. But we must also be proactive to rid our elections of voter fraud and corruption.

3. What measures would you support to address the growing income disparity among Americans?

Response: Over 46 million Americans live in poverty. While, investment in education and workforce training is critically important, we must stop Washington’s attack on our jobs and economic opportunity. The current administration’s war on our natural resource industry is devastating the livelihood of thousands of hardworking West Virginias. The war on poverty starts when Washington ends its attack on our jobs.

CANDIDATE: NICK JOE RAHALL, II

Party: Democratic

County of Residence: Raleigh

Biography

A native West Virginian, Rahall, the top Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Democrat, uses experience and expertise building successes like Pullman Square and the Merritt’s Creek Connector. Bringing millions of dollars to WV, Rahall’s creating jobs through transportation, tourism, technology, mine reclamation and water wastewater services. Rahall fights for veterans, seniors, education, workers, coal miners, black lung, mine health and safety.

1. What action by Congress would you favor to address concerns about the environmental effects of natural gas extraction, particularly the process of fracking?

Response: Natural gas holds great promise for our economy as long as we strike that balance between development and protecting our lands and drinking water. I support Federal efforts that aid the State’s direct oversight of hydraulic fracturing – for example, I support ensuring public transparency and requiring disclosure of the chemical make-up of fracking fluids — just like West Virginia’s regulations.

2. Do you favor legislation to amend the Voting Rights Act to prevent states from adopting restrictive laws that make registering and voting difficult for large numbers of legally eligible voters? Explain

Response: Access to voting box is a fundamental right of our Constitutional system that must not be infringed. I have urged the House Leadership to consider the Voting Rights Amendments Act, which would restore safeguards against discrimination that were nullified by the Supreme Court’s decision in Shelby County v. Holder.

3. What measures would you support to address the growing income disparity among Americans?

Response: A strong safety net and fairer minimum wage, when combined with economic development and infrastructure investments to build our State’s highways, and schools, and broadband, and water and sewer systems – these things, I am firmly convinced, can alleviate economic hardship, reduce income inequality, and create a brighter future for West Virginia.

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT ON THE NOVEMBER 4 BALLOT.

AMENDMENT NO. 1: NONPROFIT YOUTH ORGANIZATION TAX EXEMPTION SUPPORT AMENDMENT

Summary of Purpose: To amend the State Constitution to exempt from property tax certain properties in this state owned by nonprofit youth organizations and built at cost of at least $100 million whether or not the property is used for the nonprofit youth organization’s charitable or nonprofit purpose to help raise funds for the benefit of the nonprofit youth organization. If approved, the Legislature would be required to enact laws that would protect local and regional businesses from unfair competition and unreasonable loss of revenue caused by the nonprofit organization use of the tax exemption.

This amendment is proposed specifically to allow the Boy Scouts of America to rent out facilities at its Bechtel National Scout Reserve in Fayette County for commercial events such as concerts and sports competitions without losing its exemption from property taxes. The facility is currently used for the Boy Scout Jamboree every four years and for other scouting events at other times. Under current law, renting the facilities for commercial events would make it a commercial business owing as much as $5 million in property taxes.

Proponents of the amendment see it as welcome economic development, pointing to the amount of money that events at the reserve would bring into the local economy and to the organization’s stated intention not to compete with local businesses.

Opponents are concerned about the precedent set by an amendment applying to only one entity and question whether it’s possible for the Legislature to craft laws that protect local businesses.

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