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LWV League of Women Voters of Ohio Education Fund

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

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

See below for questions on Qualifications, Environmental policies, Federal deficit

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

1. What are your qualifications for office?

Answer from George V. Voinovich:

TRAINING AND EXPERIENCE: U.S. Senator, 1999-Present; Governor, State of Ohio, 1990-1998; Mayor, City of Cleveland, 1979-1988; Lieutenant Governor, State of Ohio, 1979; Commissioner, Cuyahoga County, 1977-1978; Auditor, Cuyahoga County, 1971-1976; Member, Ohio House of Representatives, 1967-1971

Answer from Eric D. Fingerhut:

TRAINING AND EXPERIENCE: State Senator, 1991-1992; U.S. Representative, 1993-1994; State Senator, 1998-present

2. Do you think any changes should be made to environmental policies affecting air and water quality? If so, what?

Answer from George V. Voinovich:

I have made improving the quality of Ohio's environment one of my top priorities throughout my career and continued that commitment by successfully passing legislation in 2003 that banned oil and gas drilling in the Great Lakes. I look forward to continuing that commitment by working to fund the Great Lakes Legacy Act + a program that provides $50 million annually for the clean up of contaminated sites throughout the Great Lakes. Additionally, I will continue to push legislation I introduced to help local officials fix their antiquated sewer systems to meet federal requirements and improve water quality.

To make our air cleaner, I will fight to enact the Clear Skies Act, which will reduce air emissions by 70 percent and provide the first-ever limits on mercury. I will also push for reforms to New Source Review so energy-efficient technologies can be better utilized, which will ultimately reduce air pollution.

Answer from Eric D. Fingerhut:

Absolutely. We must require our power plants and manufacturers to apply the most advanced pollution control technologies to their facilities. Current technology exists to greatly reduce environmental damage to our air and water. Not only would this benefit our environment and the health of us all, it would also benefit our economy. Right here in Ohio, we have companies that stand to greatly increase their business and create new jobs by producing the newest, most advanced pollution control equipment. As regulations are delayed and/or eliminated, companies like this are severely, adversely affected, to the detriment of our health and our economy. We do not have to choose between a clean environment and jobs + we can and should have both.

3. How would you address the federal deficit?

Answer from George V. Voinovich:

As mayor and governor, I inherited budgets deep in the red. In both cases I turned the red into black. In fact, at the end of my two terms as governor, Ohio's Rainy Day Fund had $905 million in its account. I remained true to my fiscal conservative roots in the Senate as illustrated in 2003 when I championed a responsible $350 billion stimulus package that not only provided fuel for the economy but also limited growth of the deficit. I will continue to maintain that fiscal discipline, which has earned me a reputation as a "fiscal hawk." Specifically, I will work to pass legislation I introduced, the Truth in Budgeting and Social Security Protection Act, to balance the budget while ensuring that the Social Security trust fund remains untouched and safe for seniors. Additionally, I will continue to fight to restrain spending as I have done in the past.

Answer from Eric D. Fingerhut:

As a member of Congress in 1993, I had the courage to vote for the Clinton budget, which created the first balanced budget since 1968. While it probably cost me my seat, it was the right thing to do. I am appalled by the policies of the last 4 years that plunged this country into its worst fiscal crisis in history. As a U.S. Senator, I would reinstate "pay as you go" rules that require any new spending be paid for by cuts in other programs or through new revenues. I would create a Social Security "lockbox" to stop the raids of the Social Security surplus. I would launch an effort to reduce the costs of government through technological innovations. I would replace the recent Medicare law with a program to reduce prescription drug costs and would revise Bush tax cuts in the areas of estate and corporate taxes.

Responses to questions asked of each candidate are reproduced as submitted to the League.  Candidates' statements are presented as submitted. The answer must not exceed 150 words.

The order of the candidates is random and changes daily.

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Created: December 15, 2004 13:41 PST
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