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Candidate Questionnaire: Andrew McCullough (L)1. What is your top priority for the State of Utah?To put freedom at the forefront. The War on Drugs has criminalized an entire generation, and the cost of policing and incarcerating those who use drugs is too high. The State should not be making moral choices for its citizens.
- What will you do to improve Utah's economy? Many people are having difficulty finding jobs. What are your plans to help create jobs for blue and white collar Utahns?Jobs can be created by low taxes and lack of unnecessary regulation. It is not the State's duty to create jobs, but to create an atmosphere were jobs can be created by the private sector.
- What type of priority is education, including higher education, to you? What will you do to improve public schools and access to higher education?I firmly believe in education, and I recognize that the Utah State Constitution guarantees a free education to its citizens. Nevertheless, the cost of education is by far the largest portion of our budget. I do believe that some fees are appropriate for those families who send their children to public schools. Activities outside of the core curriculum should be self-supporting, including athletics. I also support higher education, but it must be done in a manner that does not require an increase in taxes. Private fund-raising, reasonable tuition and fees and privatization of some functions need to be part of the equation.
- What role should the State of Utah have in immigration reform?I fully support the State's efforts to provide some form of identification and the right to drive to undocumented immigrants. I also support the continued access to higher education for those immigrants who have basically grown up in Utah and attended our public schools. A means must be found, however, to allow those who are here to work legally, pay their taxes and contribute to the economy. Efforts should be made not to allow these people to become dependent on the State for their survival. Immigrants come to this country to find an opportunity, and I support providing that opportunity for them to sustain themselves.
- Do you believe the state government needs ethics reform and campaign finance reform?To some degree, yes. I do think that it is silly to assume that if a lobbyist offers to buy lunch in order to spend a little time explaining his position on a bill, that might be purchasing the legislator's vote. The day after the Legislature adjourns, lobbyists are allowed to donate any amount of money to the campaign of that legislator. The recent controversy in the Governor's race does suggest that some campaign limits should be considered. Perhaps there should be some restrictions on those doing business with the State.
- Utah is famous for its beautiful landscapes. What will you do to protect and promote these areas?I certainly support State parks and open areas. Preserving open land, however, is primarily within federal jurisdiction, due to the large portion of federal land in Utah. Cities also have primary responsibility for open areas within their boundaries. It is not primarily the State's job to promote tourism. That should be done by private enterprise. The State can, however, support those efforts without spending substantial taxpayer money.
- What are your views on nuclear testing?It does seem that nuclear energy is part part of our future. If we acknowledge that, we must acknowledge that some testing must occur somewhere. I do not put Utah forth as an ideal place for that, but we must recognize the necessity of allowing some experimentation somewhere. Most everyone now recognizes that burning coal and oil, as well as their production, causes environmental hazards. Alternatives need to be found.
- When you are forming an opinion on an issue, who do/will you ask for advice and information?I consider myself an educated person. There is much, however, I do not understand. People who are experts within their field must be considered and consulted. All my actions, however, will be guided by my fundamental belief that Government must be kept small and that freedom must be preserved.
- In your opinion, what is the number one issue facing Utah's families today? What would you do as Governor to alleviate that issue?I believe I have set forth above my economic views, as well as my views on personal freedom. I think those issues are tied together, and cannot easily be prioritized. I do believe that the State interferes in family and personal matters too quickly and too often. The Government is here to protect freedom and to allow families a place to live and prosper. I do not believe that it is the government's role to "alleviate" everyone's problems.
- What is the one personal trait/characteristic that you want voters to know about you, and why is that important in this race?I am an attorney whose practice deals with issues of personal liberty and lack of government restraint. I am passionate about my view of limited government, and I believe that by working within the government I could continue and expand on my efforts in those areas.