General Election 2016: Randy Hultgren, Candidate for the 14th Congressional District
Oct 25, 2016 06:35PM ● Published by Steven Jack
Name: Randy Hultgren
Employment: Member of Congress, 14th District
Family: Wife Christy, 4 children
Education: 1988 B.S. from Bethel College, 1993 J.D. from Chicago-Kent College of Law
Previously elected office:
- 1994 - 1999 DuPage County Board and County Forest Preserve Board
- 1999 - 2007 Illinois House of Representatives
- 2007 - 2010 Illinois Senate
- 2010 – present, U.S. House of Representatives
Relevant community service: Serving the residents of Illinois’ 14th Congressional District, Member of local church
What makes you qualified to serve the people of the 14th Congressional district?
I want to continue serving the people of the 14th District of Illinois again because I still believe America can be a land of opportunity for honest and hardworking citizens.
While in Congress, I have put families and small businesses first, pursuing legislative solutions to create opportunities for job growth and solutions for those facing rising household costs. I convened community leaders to work together to combat heroin and painkiller abuse, resolved healthcare challenges for veterans and passed legislation to get qualified specialists into air traffic controller jobs. I worked with school leaders and called on the state to “pause” the Common Core effort. I prioritized our transportation and infrastructure, defending financing tools municipalities use to build roads and bridges, and helped release funds to study Metra extensions into our area. I have consistently said “no” to policies that grow government and burden our children with more debt. I have helped hundreds of families fight for and receive their Social Security, Veterans, Medicare and Medicaid benefits.
On a broader level, I have been afforded a unique platform to bring attention and solutions to human rights issues and fight for religious freedom, and have worked hard to become one of a select few Members who are a part of distinguished congressional organizations that are influential venues on human rights—the Helsinki Commission, the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, and the Congressional-Executive Commission on China.
I believe we can all agree on 80 percent of the issues facing the nation. Building relationships and working on common goals can help us address the other 20 percent. I want to continue to serve the 14th District and keep fighting for jobs, families and limited government.
What are your plans to reach across the aisle in Congress to help accomplish things for the people of the 14th Congressional District?
A Congress where both sides work together to solve our nation’s challenges is productive and effective. I have a clear record of achieving legislative victories—in many cases across the aisle—for the benefit of the 14th District. I have worked hard to maintain my conservative principles while working with Democrats to solve problems for Illinois.
I secured more equitable transportation funding between city, suburban and rural areas. I exposed government abuse and unaccountability by shedding light on the FAA’s discredited hiring process of air traffic controllers, and included my own legislation in a transportation bill to ensure our skies are safe and our towers are staffed by highly qualified controllers and experienced military veterans. I have exposed the plague of human trafficking to Congress, and have ensured several pieces of legislation—including my bill to reduce demand for sex trafficking—have gathered support on both sides of the aisle.
I have a strong bipartisan record in Congress. I have worked with Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, a Democrat from Maryland, to protect tax-exempt municipal bonds, a lifeline for local communities looking to improve their infrastructure. One of my good friends is Rep. Dan Lipinski from Illinois who serves with me on the Science Committee. Rep. Lipinski, Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-WA) and I have worked extensively to advocate for investing in jobs through funding basic scientific research at Fermilab and Argonne. My bill to bring the discoveries made at our national labs to the marketplace passed the House with bipartisan support.
What are the 3 biggest problems facing the people of the 14th Congressional District, and what do you propose to help fix these problems?
1. When I entered Congress, I promised to restore the 14th District jobs that were lost as a result of the Great Recession and financial crisis. I have worked hard and across the aisle on policies to help our manufacturers, farmers, small businesses and other employers expand and hire more workers.
I will continue to fight for jobs and opportunity for Illinois individuals and families. I have cut down on unnecessary and outdated federal regulations that Illinois businesses large and small tell me stifle their economic growth and hurt their ability to expand and hire. Since its introduction in Congress, I have pushed forward my legislation to put these old regulations on a path to elimination. My bill has passed the House and a companion bill has been introduced in the Senate. Similarly, I have introduced H.R. 5374, the Bring Small Businesses Back Tax Reform Act, which provides immediate tax relief and reduces administrative burdens for small businesses. It is gaining steady support in the House.
2. Washington doesn't have a revenue problem—it has a spending problem, and both parties are to blame. Americans have no other option than to follow a budget every month, but like an addicted gambler running out his credit line, the federal government spends more than it takes in, and borrows even more to pay its obligations. Our $20 trillion debt is owned primarily by the Chinese government. We can’t sit idly by trusting they will never call in our debt.
I will continue to fight to reduce the national debt on the next generation by stopping overspending of tax dollars, holding government accountable and growing our economy. Repeatedly, I have said “no more” to runaway spending by voting against bloated omnibus bills that break budget caps and allow the growth of mandatory spending. The best way to allow the economy to grow more jobs is to limit the intrusion of government. I pushed for “zero-based” budgeting to encourage responsible stewardship of taxpayer dollars.
We should reform the tax system and make it fairer for families and all business owners. Intelligent reform removes the economic distortions in our system and ensures every American gets to keep more of what they make. It allows us to invest in defense, homeland security, transportation and infrastructure to ensure our citizens are protected and our communities can grow through improved roads, airports and rail.
I uphold my promise from day one to strengthen and preserve Social Security and Medicare to those 55 and older, ensuring they experience no change or cuts in their benefits.
3. Congress needs to improve its effectiveness by breaking down walls so Members can work across the aisle to find solutions to American problems by finding areas of agreement. See above for answer on my work across the aisle for the benefit of the 14th District.