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Los Angeles County, CA June 5, 2012 Election
Smart Voter

Text of Speech at League of Women Voters Debate

By Steve Collett

Candidate for United States Representative; District 33

This information is provided by the candidate
At May 2, 2011 Candidates Forum

We spend $700 billion a year on defense which is 43% of total world defense dollars. I would rather cut $200 billion off defense than cut a teacher's salary by 50 cents. It's time to tell defense to get by on $500 billion this year.

The U.S. has an imprisonment rate that is five times higher than most every industrialized country. We need fewer laws, fewer prisoners, and we need to decriminalize marijuana. Our war on drugs is the most costly and failed policy in U.S. history. It empowers gangs, terrorists and drug cartels. By treating drugs as a medical rather than criminal issue, we can stop the killings in Mexico without firing a single shot.

Congressional cuts of $38 billion to education and the environment and proposals to slash Medicare but add another 100 billion to defense spending is a disgrace.

I am pro-choice on matters of abortion, on who a person can marry, and on what a person can do with their own body. We need to revoke the Patriot Act.


As Americans we are skeptical of authority and we cherish freedom. We care about the Bill of Rights. We care about privacy and freedom from government intrusion. We care about discrimination in our misguided drug war. We care about protecting our children from policies which glamorize and enrich drug dealers. We care about common economic sense.

You the taxpayers are being forced to pay outrageous amounts for defense, drug prohibition and exploding imprisonment rates.  I will not pander to the military or prison industrial complex.

I will listen. I will tell you the truth.

Government is here to protect our rights, not violate them

If you have had your rights violated, if you think we spend too much on defense and programs which intrude on your freedom, if you are tired of having your tax dollars thrown down the drain and want real progress on reducing our deficits, without taking funds from education and the environment, please vote for Steve Collett on May 17.

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