Pete Phillips vs Mark Murdock for House District 10B
House District 10B
1. What would you be able to accomplish in St. Paul to help the people affected by tornadoes in Wadena, Bluffton and Deer Creek Area?
The FEMA declaration did not include individual home owners. People in Deer Creek, Bluffton and the surrounding farms have been left out. The same is true for many homeowners in Wadena, as many of our neighbors were underinsured. I will urge the governor to demand that President Obama extend FEMA coverage to home owners.
My opponent had the opportunity to include millions of dollars to rebuild the Wadena Community Center last week. He recommended to leadership that Wadena receive no money. I will reverse this action so Wadena can rebuild like we deserve.
2. What do you think is the appropriate role of state government?
The U.S. Constitution delegates a lot of power to the states. This ensures local control as decisions need to be made on a more regional level. The state then delegates power to city, county, township and schools. We need to reserve as many decisions as possible to local government. However, the state can be the great equalizer. We simply do not have the resources and tax base to provide the basic government functions. The state must make it fair to taxpayers. There are also issues that affect the entire state that must be acted upon in St. Paul.
3. Rank these five priorities from 1 to 5, and give reasons you ranked them that way: education funding, tax cuts, immigration reform, local government aid and health care.
Education funding and LGA are a very close one and two. The state must step in and fund these programs to reduce property taxes. Education is the cornerstone of growth. Quality education creates employment and expands the tax base. #3 Health Care: business owners and workers cannot find affordable coverage. The costs go up, coverage gets worse. #4 Tax cuts: If business owners provide decent health care or expand employment, they should get healthy tax credits. The middle class is overtaxed and must receive relief. #5 Immigration laws must be federal to ensure consistency.
4. How do you feel you differ most as a candidate versus your opponent?
The most important question I will ask myself before I vote on anything in St. Paul: Is this good for this district? My answer to that question will govern my vote. I vote for this area, period. I will not stick to party lines as my opponent has done on nearly every vote, even if it hurts people back home. This office is elected by our neighbors, not St. Paul, not a political party. I understand the needs of this district because I have asked and will continue to do so. My door is always open.