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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund

Smart Voter
California State Government November 2, 2004 Election
Candidates Answer Questions on the Issues
United States Senator

The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of California and asked of all candidates for this office.

See below for questions on Federal Resources, Foreign Policy, Federal Budget

Click on a name for other candidate information.   See also more information about this contest.

1. What can be done to ensure that California gets its fair share of federal resources?

Answer from Bill L. Jones:

In the past 22 years, California has unfairly lost federal tax dollars under our current representation in the U.S. Senate. California went from near parity to now receiving only 76 cents for every tax dollar sent to Washington. California needs a Senator who rejects confrontational politics, who will work with Democrats and Republicans alike, as I will, to fund our State's priorities. I want to create a more unified delegation that is able to use our numbers and committee assignments in Congress to solve our State's problems. I have a record of working with many of the current delegation--both Democrats and Republicans--and a record of passing major bipartisan bills in public safety, infrastructure, and the environment.

Answer from Barbara Boxer:

California has become a younger state since I was elected to the Senate. Because of that, we receive less funding for Social Security and Medicare payments. Another factor contributing to declining federal payments for California is the reduced poverty rate and the resulting reduced Medicaid reimbursements in the state since I entered the Senate. Poverty has gone down 28% since I've been in the Senate and household income has increased 39%.

I have been successful in funding in a number of areas -- especially in highway funding. The 2004 transportation bill includes a 40% increase in highway funding for California and a 50% increase in transit funding. If the Senate version of the bill becomes law, highway funding will have more than doubled since I came to the Senate.

I will continue working to bring more federal dollars to California.

Answer from Marsha Feinland:

Slash the military budget to return some of the $30 billion per year Californians pay to support U.S. aggression against other countries.

Make all federal mandates fully funded.

2. What are your foreign policy priorities for the United States?

Answer from Barbara Boxer:

As a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, I will continue to focus on the situation in Iraq. We need to build an international coalition to share the burden in Iraq because the United States is shouldering almost all the financial burden and the military burden alone. We need to get back to the days when America truly led the world.

Answer from Marsha Feinland:

End all U.S. intervention in the affairs of other countries. Close all foreign military bases and bring home all troops and agents.

Stop all aid to Israel until it withdraws to its pre-1967 borders.

Establish a foreign policy based on respect for the right to self-determination of all peoples.

Answer from Bill L. Jones:

My priorities include ensuring our Armed Forces have the necesssary manpower, equipment, and weapons systems to meet our commitments.

We must work to eliminate the spread of nuclear weapons, and to reduce current reasearch and materials stockpiles as we are now doing in Iraq, Libya, Sudan, and in the former Soviet Union States.

I support working to contain rogue nations like North Korea and continuing multi-lateral efforts to bring them back into the community of nations.

3. What are your priorities for the federal budget?

Answer from Barbara Boxer:

Instead of spending hundreds of billions of taxpayer money overseas or on tax breaks for millionaires, it's time to focus on our problems here at home.

It is time for us to focus on making our schools the best they can be, providing affordable health care and good paying jobs for our families.

We need targeted tax cuts for the middle class and for businesses that create jobs. We need to fully fund education and help make a college education more affordable. We need additional resources to protect our environment and to ensure we have clean water and clean air. We need additional funding to protect the United States from terrorist attack. In particular, we need more resources to protect our ports, rail system, and our airlines.

Answer from Marsha Feinland:

Eliminate funding for war.

Fully fund education, housing, mass transportation and health care.

Restore the estate tax. Tax unearned income (dividends and capital gains) at the same rate as earned income. Make the tax system more progressive.

Answer from Bill L. Jones:

I will secure California's proper share of federal funds. At a time we are still solving the budget disasters left over from Gray Davis, we cannot afford to continue sending over $1600 for every man, woman, and child more to Washington than what we get back.

I will maintain the tax reforms needed to spur long term job growth in California and the nation, particularly items such as the Death Tax repeal that is so critical to small business. I will work to continue these efforts to dramatically simplify the federal tax code.

I will vote to fund Homeland Security, with increased resources to secure our borders and enforce our immigration laws. Every other measure we have put in place to fight terrorists means nothing as long as millions simply walk across our borders each year.

I will renew funding for water, transportation, education, and the other critical infrastructure needed to keep pace with the growing needs of our economy and our population.

Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League. 

The order of the candidates is random and changes daily.

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Created: December 15, 2004 13:39 PST
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