Brad Schneider: Candidate Profile
10th District U.S. Representative (Democrat)
Note: Answers provided have not been edited for grammar, misspellings or typos. In some instances, candidate claims that could not be immediately verified have been omitted.
Office sought: 10th District U.S. Representative
Family: Married (Julie Dann), two children (Adam, 18 and Daniel, 17)
Occupation: Management Consultant and Small Business Owner
Education: 1976-1979: Cherry Creek High School, Englewood, CO. College preparatory public high school. 1979-1983: Northwestern University, McCormick School of Engineering. BS, Industrial Engineering. 1986-1988: Northwestern University, Kellogg Graduate School
Civic involvement: Current: Leadership Greater Chicago Alumni (Class of 2003) Chicago Council on Global Affairs, President's Circle Member Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago American Jewish Committee American Israel Public Affairs Committee Alliance of Latinos & Jews Moriah Congregation Illinois Tenth Congressional District Democrats Moraine Township Democratic Organization Recent: Family Firm Institute Vistage International Association of Mergers and Acquisition Advisors Interm CEO PANIM: The Institute for Jewish Leadership and Values
Elected offices held: None.
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: No.
Key Issue 1
Economic opportunity and security, not just for some but for all Americans.
Key Issue 2
World class education opportunities for every American child.
Key Issue 3
Securing safety-net programs such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid for this generation and future generations.
What would you do to help ease partisan gridlock? Are you willing to compromise on sticking points including spending cuts and taxes to produce results' How can Congress move from being a "crisis-driven" institution?
To paraphrase Bismarck, successful politics is achieving the art of the possible.
If I am elected to Congress, I will work with my colleagues, on both sides of the aisle, to find areas of common interest and common ground. I will first seek to find issues where our shared goals provide the opportunity to collaborate, without the need for either side to compromise. I believe early successes on such issues can then lead to growing confidence and trust between otherwise adversaries, and hopefully allow for compromise on broader issues.
While I am willing to compromise on process, or on programs, I will not compromise my principles, nor would I expect those I work with to do so. It is in these areas where the hardest debates will take place. But I am confident that people working together with respect and honest dialogue will be able to find ?third ways' to allow for national progress on even the most difficult of challenges.
Should tax breaks be extended? Why or why not? If so, for whom? What should Congress do to improve unemployment? Why do you support or oppose President Obama's jobs plan? What cuts or revenue increases do you support for deficit reduction?
The Bush tax cuts will expire at the end of this year. We need to stop kicking the can down the road and rethink our entire tax system towards long-term, comprehensive tax reform. I believe in a progressive tax structure that fairly distributes the costs of government in a way that those of us fortunate to have more, carry more of the burden.
With respect to improving employment and creating jobs, Congress can and must play a bold leadership role setting a course for the country that will lead to sustainable economic growth. Most importantly, we must have growth that benefits those struggling the most and those in the shrinking middle class, not just those at the top.
My strategy for growth includes five key elements:
1. Incentives for Jobs Now: While smart policy will help us grow long-term, I will also seek to provide immediate incentives for companies, states and local communities to invest in people and equipment today. We must emphasize existing programs and develop new, targeted tax incentives for companies to hire and train new workers, purchase new production equipment, and develop new products and processes. We must continue to invest at the local level to help cities, towns and villages retain teachers, police, firefighters and other community-enhancing service providers.
2. Investment in Infrastructure: We must create many public/private partnerships to reinvest, rebuild, and reinvent our national infrastructure. We should start immediately rebuilding our national electrical grid to power both the homes and the cars of the future. We should accelerate reinforcing and rebuilding our bridges, highways, and streets. We should plan for, design and construct new high-speed rail networks, linked to modern mass transit systems that restore our world leadership in transportation. And we should start now, to produce good jobs today, and provide the framework for long-term growth and jobs for years to come.Towards this end, we need to create an infrastructure bank to accelerate investments in projects as soon as possible.
3. Creation of Quality, Long-Term Jobs: We must create incentives for companies presently holding trillions of dollars in cash accounts to deploy that capital in people and long-term investment. We can do so with comprehensive, common sense laws and regulations that protect people and the environment, while at the same time providing entrepreneurs and managers the policy certainty they need in order to take prudent risks in their businesses.
4. Investment in People Today and in the Future: Concurrently, we must invest in education and training programs for workers, young and old, to hone the skills necessary to compete in the 21st Century global economy. By reinforcing our workers skills, we create further incentives for companies to bring high quality, value-producing jobs back to America.
5. Investment in New Technologies, Including Clean Energy, Health Care, and Information:? We must create public/private partnerships in new technologies to develop and implement innovative solutions to many of the future challenges we can see facing us on the horizon, including energy security, environmental sustainability, and affordable health care.
These investments will not only create jobs today, they will create wealth for our nation long into the future.
I supported President Obama's jobs plan because it was a positive step towards helping the economy create more jobs.
It should have passed last fall. I hope that the 112th Congress will work together to come up with a jobs plan this year.
If not, I expect that the 113th Congress, with a new Democratic majority, will finally take concrete steps to help the economy regain its footing and finally start growing again.
With respect to reducing and ultimately eliminating budget deficits, I will seek to intelligently, responsibly and fairly address both spending and revenues.
What steps should the country now be taking in the war on terrorism? What policy should the U.S. have toward Iran and North Korea? What is your view of terrorism policies that pit public safety against civil liberty?
First, let me state that I don't view terrorism as an ideology but rather a tactic against which we must be constantly diligent.
And that diligence must always be an integral part of our overall national security and national foreign policy.
Our goal in foreign policy is to keep America safe today, as well as work to craft a sustainable, forward looking policy that can ensure our security and prosperity for years to come.
Successful policy will, of necessity, combine the right balance of hard and soft power.
As a member of Congress I will support policies that preserve the United States' positive influence and leadership in bilateral and multilateral relations with our allies, in addressing challenges with our adversaries, and in setting international policies in global forums.
As a state sponsor of global terrorism and supplier of weapons to terrorist groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah, Iran cannot be allowed to develop nuclear weapons capabilities.
The United States has, and must continue to take the lead in working with the world community to isolate Iran diplomatically and to establish and enforce sustainable, increasingly tightening sanctions.
Sanctions on the Iranian economy must be broad and deep, such as restrictions of gasoline imports and limitation on business transactions with Iran's central bank, so as to persuade Iran's people that their national interests are best served by abandoning their nuclear ambitions.
At the same time, the U.S. should continue to employ cyber and other covert measures to delay Iranian progress towards nuclear technology milestones.
Regarding North Korea, there does not seem to be any indication that the new regime of Kim Jong Un will be different from his father's.
Therefore, I believe we must continue to isolate North Korea, while at the same time leaving the door open for real and substantive talks towards working to bring North Korea into a better relationship with its neighbors and the world.
Finally, I believe it critical that Congress finally formally address the many complex questions surrounding how we balance security and civil liberties.
Personally, I believe that with open and honest debate, we are smart enough as a country to craft polices that will keep us safe while preserving the freedoms we hold dear.
How should Medicare and Medicaid be changed overall to fix fund gaps' How should Medicare be changed for those currently enrolled? How should it change for the Baby Boomer generation?
To address the challenges to the sustainability of Medicare and Medicaid I think we need to address the absolute cost of delivering quality health care to all Americans.
Between 1980 and 2008, health care spending as a share of GDP grew from 9% to 16%.
According to the OECD, the U.S. spends on average 50% more per capita than other industrialized nations, without necessarily better health outcomes.
As a nation, we need to focus more on well care, preventative care, and curative care.
We need to work to reduce our reliance on emergency care and defensive care.
We can invest more in technologies and demonstrably effective standards of care that lead to demonstrably better outcomes.
And we can continue to invest in better information technologies to bring greater efficiency to our health delivery systems.
What is your position on concealed carry gun laws' How do you believe marriage should be defined legally? What is your position on abortion? What, if any, abortion exceptions do you support? Should abortion clinics receive government funding?
I believe we must work to enact sensible safe gun policy at the federal level that will reduce gun violence in America. I oppose concealed carry gun laws.
As a member of Congress I will pursue common sense gun policy including initiatives such as the Large Capacity Ammunition Feeding Device Act, the Gun Show Loophole Closing Act and reinstatement of the Federal Assault Weapons Ban.
Marriage as a legal term should be defined as a union between two consenting adults. I support same sex marriage.
I am 100% Pro Choice and believe that abortion should be safe, legal and rare.
I also support federal funding for clinics which provide abortion services.