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LWV League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
San Francisco, San Mateo County, CA November 4, 2008 Election
Smart Voter

Jackie Speier
Answers Questions

Candidate for
United States Representative; District 12


The questions were prepared by the League of Women Voters of California and asked of all candidates for this office.
Read the answers from all candidates (who have responded).

Questions & Answers

1. What, if anything, do you believe the federal government should do to control global climate change?

Everything possible.

Climate change is real and it is crucially important that we do all we can to address its root causes.

A good first start would be to have an administration that listens to its own scientists.

We need to extend tax credits for people who invest in wind, solar, geothermal or other green technologies. Currently, these credits are extended on a year-by-year basis, which keeps businesses, homeowners and local planning authorities from crafting long-term plans. We should do all we can to encourage green building practices by letting builders and communities know that they will be helped if they use the latest technologies.

Another easy solution is asking drivers to slow down by just 5 mph on the freeway. By reducing your speed from 65 to 60 miles per hour, you increase your car's gas mileage by 10% on average. If Americans embraced this, we could seriously cut our carbon emissions in this country, reduce the demand for gasoline and lower prices at the pump.

2. What should the federal government do, if anything, to ensure that every American has health coverage?

More Americans go bankrupt due to medical debt than any other cause.

There is no reason for this to happen. Health costs have spiraled out of control, not because doctors and nurses keep getting richer - in most cases their salaries have not kept pace with inflation - it is because bigger and bigger slices get taken off the top by insurance companies, HMOs, billing agencies and other middle men.

We need universal, single-payer healthcare in this country. I am eager to work with the Obama/Biden administration to start moving our country toward an equitable and top-notch healthcare system.

3. What, if anything, should the federal government do about immigration?

A nation needs secure borders. We should know who is coming in and out of the country.

I am the daughter and granddaughter of immigrants. I also have the privilege of representing one of the most diverse congressional districts in the House of Representatives. Were it not for immigrants, the 12th Congressional District would be a very different place.

Immigration is an economic issue. When times are good in America, more workers from other countries come here looking for a better life. In recent months, both legal and undocumented immigration has slowed, due to our economy. But so long as America represents an opportunity for foreign workers, we will need to address the issue.

We need a sound immigration policy which allows those who have been working and paying taxes in this country a path to citizenship. That path should require them to pay an appropriate fine for breaking the law and not give them any advantage over someone who did not enter illegally.

While I was in the legislature, I took a trip to Mexico and visited a village where all the men were gone. They were in America where they could send remittances back from the wages they made picking broccoli and artichokes.

I asked one of the women what America could do to help and she said, "Let our men come home."

Our country would be safer and more economically sound with a guest worker program. The workers will be screened and documented and allowing them to return home when they are not working makes perfect sense.

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

Read the answers from all candidates (who have responded).

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Created from information supplied by the candidate: October 10, 2008 06:30
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