Friday, August 29, 2008

Minnesota Legislative seat 7B Candidates answer Hillsider Questionnaire

Retiring representative Mike Jaros will vacate the Minnesota Legislative seat 7B. The following candidates are vying for the seat: Democrats Roger Reinert, Brandon Clokey, John Derbis, Marsh Stenersen, and Daniel Maryland; Republican Allan Kehr, and Independent party candidate Jay Cole.

Each candidate was contacted or attempted to be contacted more than once to participate. Candidates were allowed one press release or statement in addition to answering the questionnaire.

The primary election is Tuesday Sept. 9. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. The general election is Tuesday, Nov. 4.

The Hillsider asked all the candidates to participate in our questionnaire. Here are the questions.

1. Health care is on everyone’s mind. What will you do as a representative to ensure that all Minnesotans have adequate access to affordable health care?
2. Half of Minnesota’s jobs do not pay a standard living wage. What is your position on providing subsidies or incentives to employers who provide a livable wage?
3. Federal and state aid to cities have been cut. Basic and important services such as senior meal staff, youth programs in general, those which add to health and prevent crime are affected; also vital services such as residential water have new rules and are expensive.
Question: What can you offer at the state level that would increase access and cut costs to vulnerable taxpaying citizens?
4. Racial inequities in Minnesota exist in most of life’s areas for American Indian and African Americans, they are statistically more likely to suffer: higher infant mortality, shorter life span, less access to health care, fewer high school graduates, higher unemployment, lower income, more often victims of crime, make up a higher percentage of prison inmate population. These historical trends continue to exist today in Duluth.
Question: Describe what specific actions you will take to lead the people of your district to close these unfair racial inequities?