Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Interview: Dale Glading
I recently had the chance to sit down (electronically of course) with Dale Glading, the Republican candidate for the House of Representatives from New Jersey's fightin' 1st district. The following is what transpired:
RM: Your web site's slogan and videos describe you as a potential agent of change. What about the current representation in the district needs changing? What kind of change would you like to bring to the 1st congressional district?
DG: Washington is broken and desperately in need of real reform. The size of the federal government has grown exponentially, requiring more and more of our tax dollars to support and subsidize often unnecessary programs and pork barrel spending. Meanwhile, people in my district and across America are calling for meaningful and positive change in the status quo.
The 1st Congressional District in New Jersey has been represented by the Democratic Party for the past 33 years. During that time, our property taxes have soared, our cost of living has skyrocketed, Camden City has become the poorest and third most dangerous city in America, and citizens are fleeing the Garden State in record numbers. At the same time, New Jersey residents receive less return from their federal tax dollars than any other state, ranking 50th or dead last.
Rep. Rob Andrews has not only failed to properly represent our district and its interests, but he has an almost non-existent legislative record. Since 1993, Rep. Andrews has introduced 579 bills in Congress, but only six (less than 1%) have even made it out of committee. Of those six bills, only one has been enacted into law, giving Mr. Andrews a congressional batting average of .002.
I believe in citizen representatives, not career politicians. After two unproductive decades as a Washington insider, it's time for Mr. Andrews to come home. Replacing him with someone else from the same party (or the same family) is not an option if we want real reform. Albert Einstein defined insanity as "doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."
It has been said that "power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely." The recent scandal involving Mr. Andrews and the federal earmark he requested for his wife's program at Rutgers Law School - not to mention the earmarks he has requested for multiple campaign contributors - is proof positive of that statement.
Conversely, I am not beholden to special interests or corrupt party bosses. Rather, I am beholden to the people of my district and would seek to represent them with integrity and greater effectiveness.
RM: There has been a heated debate over the role of Camille Andrews as the Democratic nominee and even accusations of Camille being a "placeholder" for her husband or another Democratic candidate. Do you have any thoughts on this?
DG: I believe that Camille Andrews' placeholder status has disenfranchised the Democrat voters in our district and has defrauded the entire election process. The voters should decide who is to represent them, not the backroom party bosses. Asking Mrs. Andrews to keep her husband's seat warm is a prime example of the arrogance and corruption within the South Jersey Democrat machine.
RM: In your policy stances you argue "It would be immoral for the United States to desert its Iraqi allies, who have taken remarkable steps towards building a strong democracy in their homeland, while they require our assistance." You later remark "As a matter of principle Dale Glading opposes the concept of nation building." Do you feel the Iraq War is heading in a positive or in a negative direction? Would you oppose or support a "timetable" for U.S. forces removal. How long do you think the United States forces should stay in Iraq?
DG: I think it is pointless to argue ad naseum the merits of our decision to invade Iraq. That's "water over the dam" and the stark reality is that we're there now and American lives have already been sacrificed...so what do we intend to do from this point forward? An unintended byproduct of our invasion was the destabilization of Iraq. Therefore, to honor our servicemen and women, to protect our national security interests and to fulfill our obligation to the Iraqi people to stabilize their country, we need to maintain the military force necessary to finish the job. Whereas I strongly advocate bringing our troops home as soon as possible, setting an artificial timetable is nothing but political posturing and poor foreign policy.
RM: On your website you remark "Dale wants to put an end to cronyism and career politicians, and he will replace backroom politics with the voice of the people." Does this mean you would decline to seek higher office if elected to represent New Jersey's first congressional district?
DG: I entered this race to serve the people of the 1st Congressional District and to offer them a real choice for the first time in more than 30 years. Unlike Rep. Andrews, I do not possess an insatiable political ambition for higher office. I also strongly believe in term limitations.
RM: The economy has been a great concern of many American with gas prices, inflation, and economic pessimism all on the rise. What steps would you take to alleviate these problems if elected to congress.
DG: I would advocate a substantial reduction in government spending - including the elimination of all federal earmarks - and a corresponding reduction in our tax burden.
RM: Thank you for your time!