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November 8, 2016 — Illinois General Election
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United States

U.S. House of RepresentativesCandidate for District 14

Photo of Jim Walz

Jim Walz

Democratic
Sales Representative
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Raise wages for the middle and working classes through productivity enhancing federal investments and key tax reductions for workers and small businesses.
  • Reclaim power in the political process for working Americans by pushing for campaign finance reform and empowering consumer protection to prevent systematic corporate abuse of customers, while ensuring competitive markets
  • Protect our seniors and our veterans by preserving and protecting Social Security, Medicare and investing heavily in programs that will create jobs for veterans transitioning back into civilian roles.

Experience

Experience

Profession:Sales Representative
Sales representative, S.A.S. (1996–current)
School Board Member, Warren Township High School- Gurnee, IL. — Elected position (2014–current)

Education

Western Illinois University B.A. Marketing- December, 1984 (1984)

Questions & Answers

Questions from Chicago Sun-Times (18)

What is your biggest difference with your opponent(s)?
Answer from Jim Walz:

Randy Hultgren's scorched-earth governance are ineffective for the interests of the 14th District. He supports, for instance, privatizing Social Security and throwing millions of seniors into poverty. My policies would protect seniors, invest in our District and help create sustainable growth. While my policies would protect consumers, Randy Hultgren has worked tirelessly as a member of the House Financial Services committee to protect the interests of financial firms, at the expense of working Americans. 

Congress has declined to formally authorize America’s undeclared war against ISIS. Should Congress take a vote to authorize the use of military force against ISIS?
Answer from Jim Walz:

Congress should grant authorization for the use of U.S. military force (AUMF) against ISIS which would authorize continuous military operations. We need to work with our regional allies to thwart all threats of ISIS. Also, the Senate should confirm Prsident Obama's nominee for undersecretary for terrorism and financial crimes, Adam Szubin, to cut funding to terrorist organizations like ISIS and the governments that sponsor them. Ultimately, we should always work towards diplomatic ends.

More generally, what should Congress do to reduce the threat of ISIS abroad and at home? 
Answer from Jim Walz:

We need to put our geo-political differences aside and work with our regional allies to negate the threat of ISIS and other terrorist organizations. We must engage in a strong coordinated response. Arab nations in the region, however, should take the lead role in this conflict, as America cannot afford to spill the precious blood of its men and women in an effort to police intenational conflicts.

Donald Trump has called for a temporary ban on Muslim immigration. Do you support such action? What restrictions, if any, do you support on the admission of Muslims into the United States? 
Answer from Jim Walz:

I would not support any bans on Muslim admissions to the United States. We are a country of immigrants and refugess. Our diversity is one of our countries greatest strengths. I stand for our American values. We are not a nation that backs down out of fear.

The United States’ nuclear deal with Iran turned one year old on July 14, 2016. Should the deal be maintained as it is, revised or scrapped completely? What is right or wrong with the Iran deal? And should the next president feel bound by it?
Answer from Jim Walz:

I support the agreement to restrict Iran's nuclear capacity to develop nuclear weapons. It provides the best possible option for preventing nuclear conflict in the region. It allows for dtrict verification measures to ensure that Iran complies with the agreement. If Iran fails to comply, under the agreement, we would have the strength and support of the world behind us.

Should the United States build a physical wall along our nation’s entire border with Mexico? Should a “path to citizenship” be created for the millions of people already living here without proper documentation? Would you support legislation to prevent the deportations of so-called “Dreamers” — youth who came to the U.S. illegally as small children with their parents?
Answer from Jim Walz:

We are a nation of immigrants. I support the DREAM Act that would allow a pathway to legal citizenship for law-abiding and hardworking young people who want to call America their home. We should address the exploitation of cheap, foreign labor thru work visa reform. Brnging these people out of the shadows would be a benefit to all. In the 14th District, undocumented workers harvest our crops, buold our homes, cook our meals and care for our children. Its not just that we have a problem with illegal immigration- its that we have a problem with illegal immigrant employment. Allowing for citizenship would make it difficuklt for employers to undercut wages and benefits. Higher wages generates additional revenue that would benefit the economy as a whole and create more demand for jobs. Ina rare case of bipartisanship,Senate Democrats and republicans came to an agreement on a comprehensive immigration bill. But, then Speaker John Boehner, refused to bring to the floor of the House due to the "Hastert Rule not being met (where majority of the majority must agree).

Federal judges in July ruled against voter identification laws in Wisconsin and Texas, concluding that they disproportionately impact minority voters and violate the U.S. Voting Rights Act. Should voters be required to show a photo ID when voting? And should the federal government have a say in this, or is it strictly a matter for the individual states to decide? 
Answer from Jim Walz:

In America, it should not be easier for an individual to purchase a gun than it is to cast a vote. Our democracy is largely dependent on one's ability to participate in the political process. The proposals of reducing the number of polling locations; eliminating same-day registration; shortening the time to allow for early voting and rejecting multiple forms of identification are antithetical to our democracy. Toughening voter registration disproportionately affects our minority population, the elderly, and our out-of-state college students. The myth of voter fraud and voter suppresion efforts are a solution in search of a problem that does not exist.

Should all or certain federal public lands, including national parks, wildlife refuges and forests, be given to states to control? Do you support the opening of public lands and the outer continental shelf to exploration for oil and other fossil fuels, even if those resources are not immediately developed? 
Answer from Jim Walz:

As stewards of the earth, it is our moral responsibility to do all that we can to decrease our use of fossil fuels and transition to renewable sources of energy. By doing this, we would create millions of good-paying, middle class jobs and address the man-made contribution to global climate change. The externalities generated by fossil fuel extraction create untold costs for the American public in the form of climate change related disasters, poorer air quality, heat related deaths and hospitalizations, oil spills, and so much more. The only financially sensible path forward is to address these issues head on, and stem the tide of human and financial destruction now. We must not allow campaign contributions from the fossil fuel industry to cloud our judgement as has happened for too long under the leadership of my opponent, Randy Hultgren.

What changes, if any, to the U.S. tax code do you support and why?
Answer from Jim Walz:

As indicated earlier, I would support  a reduction in FICA payroll taxes across the board, while eliminating the tax cap, resultng in a lower tax burden for the vast majority of working Americans. I suppoor tthe implementation of a financial transaction tax (FTT) that would penalize high-risk, speculative Wall Street trading, minimize the potential for additional "flash crashes" and leave working and middle class investors almost completely unaffected. I would also support legislation that prevents the practice of tax-inversions that allow corporations to avoid paying their corporate taxes.

What are the most important actions Congress can take to ensure the solvency of Social Security?
Answer from Jim Walz:

I would support a reduction in FICA payroll taxes across the board while eliminating the payroll tax cap on annual incomes over $500,000. This would result in a lower tax burden for the vast majority of working Americans and would do a significant amount to balance current revenues and outlays. Notably, however, I would fight back against Washington interests who repeatedly attempt to use the alleged insolvency of Social Security to scale back this vital program, which has done so much to prevent poverty among seniors.

The Republican Party platform defines marriage as between a man and a woman. What is your view? The Obama Administration has issued guidelines to schools, saying they must allow transgender students to use the bathroom that matches their gender identity. What is your view? And do you believe parents of LGBT children should be allowed to force their children into conversion therapy?
Answer from Jim Walz:

I support the Supreme Court decision to strike down the Defense of Marriage Act to recognize same-sex marriage in all 50 states. We live in a nation where everybody should have equal rights. I believe in religious liberty, but NOT at the expense of other peoples' rights- that includes the rights of children not to be subjected to a baseless and unscientific "conversion therapy". The issues surrounding bathroom usage are political points generated by radical right media and politicians with the intention of making people fearful of Americans that seem different than they are. The sad reality is, this is a way to distract constituents from seeing the nreality that their leaders are legislating on behalf of the wealthy and well-connected, not on behalf of the working families in their districts. As Congressman, I would focus on whta unites us, not what divides us. I will not use my platform to distract and incite fesar among my constituents. I will be completely focused on returning the power of this office to the working men and women of my District.

What is the single most important action Congress can take to reduce U.S. gun violence?
Answer from Jim Walz:

I would support requirements that require more rigorous background screenings and extend the federal assault weapons ban.

The “Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act” would give the Department of Justice authority to keep suspected terrorists on the federal “no fly” list from buying firearms. The bill was voted down in Congress late last year but pushed again in June after the Orlando massacre of 49 people. Do you support or oppose this bill, and why?
Answer from Jim Walz:

I support. We should do everything possible to prevent the sale of firearms from getting into the the hands of terrorists.

Should Obamacare be repealed, left intact, or changed — and if so, how? 
Answer from Jim Walz:

I support the Affordable Care Act, but we need to go further to expand access and improve affordability for all Americans. I would improve upon certain aspects of the legislation such as allowing the negotiation of drug prices with pharmaceutical companies on behalf of Medicare (just as we with the veterans administration and Medicaid) and allow for the re-importation of drugs from other countries. This would provide incredible cost savings in the Medicare program and offer better value to consumers. Nobody shopuld have to choose between taking the medication they need to survive and paying for their rent or putting food on their table. For this reason, hardworking Americans cannot afford further disastrous attempts by Randy Hultgren and his Republican allies to repeal the ACA and move back to the model of high-cost, low-value healthcare system. Ultimately, I believe in single-payer, universal health care. We are the only industrialized country in the world that does not offer this. Healthcare should be considered a right- not a privilege.

A plan to replace Obamacare, presented by House Speaker Paul Ryan in June, would gradually increase the eligibility age for Medicare, which is now 65. Starting in 2020, the Medicare age would rise along with the eligibility age for full Social Security benefits, eventually reaching 67. Do you support this change in the eligibility age for Medicare? 
Answer from Jim Walz:

The proposal is short on specifics such as how many people will be covered as opposed to the Affordable Care Act. Cost sharing subsidies would be gone affecting low-income individuals negatively. Unless an individual maintains continual health coverage, people would not be protected from price discrimination or from pre-existing condition provisions. If individuals miss certain deadlines, insurers are free to price gouge consumers. The proposal also neglects to mention how Republican govenors throughout the country elected to reject Medicaid expansion for their states thus creating a self-induced "coverage gap".

The GOP platform opposes the use of public funds for Planned Parenthood and other groups that “perform or advocate” abortion. It also opposes funding health care that includes abortion coverage. In contrast, the Democratic Party’s platform called for continued funding of Planned Parenthood and repeal of the Hyde Amendment, which bars the direct use of federal funds to pay for abortion. Where do you stand?  
Answer from Jim Walz:

I do not favor taking away federal funds fro Planned Parenthood. Planned Parenthood provides essential preventative helth care services including, but not limited to, cancer screenings and birth control.

President Obama has proposed making two years of community college free nationally. Do you support or oppose this proposal? If you support it, how would you have the nation pay for it? 
Answer from Jim Walz:

We need the best educated workforce in the world in this globally competitive economy. Continuing to ensure that American workers are the most productive in the world will require that they have access to the best education. The reality is that increasing educational opportunity, while having some cost at the outset, will ultimately pay for itself through increased productivity that helps lift our entire economy. The President's free community college plan would be slated to cost $60 billion over 10 years. For sake of comparison, it is worth noting that when Wall Street asked for a bailout after they destroyed our economy, they got it- to the tune of $700 biliion. If offsets are needed, my preference would be a financial transaction tax that would rightsize Wall Street, stabilize our financial sector, and generate at least an additional $176 billion in revenue at the modest rate of 0.5% per transaction. This would be enough to offset free community college and many other programs with plenty to spare.

College costs have risen at twice the rate of inflation for about 30 years. What is driving this increase and what should be done about it?
Answer from Jim Walz:

We need to invest in our intellectual infrasatructure- our students; our schools; our educators. We need to invest more resources in education combined with the accountability of colleges' and states' use of money provided. wasteful spending by colleges for administrative costs and marketing campaigns; budget cuts to public education by individual states and lack of consumer protections are at the heart of the soaring costs of higher education. One significant way to reduce the cost of education wouldbe to allow individuals to refinance their student-loan debt similar to that of one's ability to refinance their home mortgages. Allowing for this refinancing strategy would also stimulate the economy as the rwalized saving would allow for individuals to have more disposable income.

Who gave money to this candidate?

Contributions

Total money raised: $22,908

Top contributors that gave money to support the candidate, by organization:

1
Fostering Progress PAC
$1,000
1
Illinois Democratic County Chairmen's Association
$1,000
1
Jim Walz
$1,000
1
Employees of Mr. Submarine
$1,000
1
Employees of Schimmel Law Firm
$1,000

More information about contributions

By State:

Illinois 97.65%
District of Columbia 2.35%
97.65%

By Size:

Large contributions (60.48%)
Small contributions (39.52%)
60.48%39.52%

By Type:

From organizations (21.18%)
From individuals (78.82%)
21.18%78.82%
Source: MapLight analysis of data from the Federal Election Commission.

Videos (1)

— October 3, 2016 Chicago Sun-Times

Jim Walz on why he should be the congressman from the 14th district.

Candidate Contact Info

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