Name as it Appears on the Ballot: Jason Chambers
Date of Birth: 8/7/1986
Campaign Web Site: www.electjasonchambers.com
Occupation & Employer: Lab Technician
Years lived in North Carolina: 24
1. What do you see as the most important issues facing North Carolina? If elected, what are your top three priorities in addressing those issues?
The economy is the number one issue. If elected, I will be a voice for lowering taxes, both for businesses and for families. I will fight for the elimination of wasteful spending. We need representatives in the General Assembly who understand we need to keep regulatory burdens to a minimum in order to create an environment that is more conducive to economic development. This will lead to job growth and ultimately, a smaller, more efficient, and more constitutional government.
2. Are there specific needs in your district that you would add to that list? How do you propose to address them?
District 30 has been lacking adequate representation for far too long. The people of this district deserve a representative who will show up to work, listen to his constituents, and who realizes that he works for and serves at the pleasure of his constituents - not the other way around.
3. What in your record as a public official or other experience demonstrates your ability to be effective on the issues you've identified? Please be as specific as possible in relating past accomplishments to current goals.
Unlike my opponent, Representative Paul Luebke, who is a 20 year incumbent, I am not a career politician and do not have a record as a public official. Simply put, I am an ordinary citizen who is deeply concerned and I want to make a positive difference.
4. How do you define yourself politically, and how does your political philosophy show itself in your past achievements and present campaign platform?
I consider myself to be a common sense conservative. That kind of common sense approach to problem solving is what I will take with me to the General Assembly in Raleigh.
5. The Independent's mission is to help build a just community in the Triangle. Please point to a specific position in your platform that would, if achieved, help further that goal.
While I am not exactly sure what is meant by a "just community" there are several things that can lead to a strong community. One such example would be quality education. I am fortunate to have four relatives, one of which is a DPS teacher, who I can talk to on a regular basis about issues facing teachers and students. We need to create a system that rewards good quality teachers, and that identifies students who are at risk of dropping out of school. We also need to give parents who have children in failing schools an alternative. That is why I am in favor of Charter Schools and strongly support lifting the current cap of 100 such schools that is currently in place in NC.
6. Identify and explain one principled stand you would be willing to take if elected that you suspect might cost you some popularity points with voters.
Perhaps my stance on Charter Schools will cost me some popularity points with some people. However, the results show that these schools overall are working and are an effective alternative.
7. The current state budget was balanced with approximately equal amounts of spending cuts (primarily to human services and local school districts) and tax increases. Another very tough budget battle looms ahead next year. Will you support: (a) deeper spending cuts? (b) greater tax increases? (c) another mix of the two? Please tell us what you'd cut and which taxes should be raised, if any.
I will NOT vote to raise taxes period. Thanks to the current fiscal irresponsibility of the current Democratic majority, we will be facing a budget deficit of over $3 Billion. This will require some tough decisions. However, I have found and will continue to find plenty of areas of waste and inefficiencies from which to cut.
8. North Carolina is sending record numbers of people to prison, and when they're released, they're often lost and get in trouble again. The Governor's StreetSafe initiative is aimed at breaking this vicious cycle and reducing the recidivism rate. As a legislator, what would you propose that she and the General Assembly do to help?
The overall goals stated in the StreetSafe initiative are worthy goals and as a member of the General Assembly I will work with other members to ensure that we are making progress in reducing the recidivism rate.
9. Health care: What should the state do next to address the problem of adults and children without adequate health care or insurance? What do you propose to do to address the mental health crisis?
North Carolina already has a program in place for individuals unable to qualify for health insurance to be able to have and afford coverage.
10. What is your position on capital punishment in North Carolina? If in favor, will you support a moratorium on executions while the question of whether the death penalty can be administered fairly is studied by the General Assembly?
I am in favor of capital punishment when there is indisputable evidence that the individual is guilty. Sadly, we are seeing the negative effects of the Racial Justice Act. My opponent was a primary sponsor of this legislation that has led to death row inmates challenging their sentencing on the basis of "a racial bias in the way capital punishment has been applied." This law relies on statistics in arguing whether a death sentence was appropriate for a particular inmate, rather than the facts surrounding the specific crime. Currently, all but 7 of the 159 inmates on death row are challenging their sentences based on the Racial Justice Act. It is also being used on at least another 50 death penalty cases awaiting trial. There is also a significant number of white death row inmates taking advantage of the law. One such example is Carl Stephen Moseley, a convicted rapist and murderer, who is claiming that the court system is biased against whites. The bottom line is the Racial Justice Act is simply a way of keeping the current "unofficial" moratorium, which is ongoing since 2007, in place.
11. What is your position regarding LGBT rights? Please address whether gay marriages or civil unions should be made legal in North Carolina; also, whether sexual orientation and identity should be added as a protected class under state anti-discrimination laws, including state personnel laws.
I do not support discrimination against individuals based on sexual orientation, or any other type of discrimination for that matter.
12. Do you support women's reproductive rights, including the "right to choose" as set out by the U.S. Supreme Court in Roe v. Wade? Given that North Carolina has the ninth highest teen pregnancy rate in the nation, do you support medically accurate sex education that includes information about birth control?
Roe v. Wade is the law of the land. The General Assembly has nothing to do with it. I do favor parental notification before a minor receives an abortion, something my opponent opposes. I also support the passage of HB 890 – Unborn Victims of Violence Act, which would charge an individual who murdered a pregnant woman with two murders, the women and the unborn child. Unfortunately, it has been stuck in committee and has never been allowed a hearing.
13. Should public employees have the right to bargain collectively in North Carolina?
With the possible exception of law enforcement, I do not support collective bargaining for public employees. The reason being is that there is a big difference between public and private sector collective bargaining. In the private sector a union cannot be overly aggressive in its contract demands for fear of financially harming or even bankrupting the corporation it is bargaining with. This is not the case with the public sector, where a union knows that the government can raise as much revenue as needed through taxes to meet their demands.
14. The latest figures from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show that 11.2 percent of North Carolina's workforce is unemployed. Please state specifically what the state should and can do to create new jobs, describe the kinds of jobs the state should support and what your role will be in creating them.
The best thing the state can do is to stop being a burden to our job creators and start being an ally. As a member of the General Assembly, I will fight for less regulatory burdens, eliminating tax biases against entrepreneurship, as well as lowering the overall rate of taxation, and creating an overall environment that is more conducive to economic growth. There is no doubt that with the right leadership, we can dramatically reduce the unemployment rate and make North Carolina an economic leader in the United States.