David McSweeney: Candidate Profile
52nd District Representative (Republican)
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.
City: Barrington Hills
Office sought: 52nd District Representative
Family: Married, Margaret with two daughters: Melissa(18 years old) and Katie(16 years old).
Occupation: Financial Consultant
Education: Master's Degree, Fuqua School of Business - Business Administration, Duke University Bachelor's Degree, Economics Major, Duke University
Civic involvement: Candidate did not respond.
Elected offices held: Palatine Township Collector Palatine Township Trustee
Have you ever been arrested for or convicted of a crime? If yes, please explain: Candidate did not respond.
Key Issue 1
My primary focus is to repeal the tax increases that were enacted last year.
The tax increases are killing jobs.
Key Issue 2
I support the bipartisan property tax relief bill (HR 3793) that would prohibit property tax levy increases when property values decline.
Key Issue 3
State spending must be cut (see my detailed answer below).
The state will soon have approximately $8.3 billion of unpaid bills and an $83 billion unfunded pension liability.
What can you do specifically to help the economy in your district? What is your view of the tax breaks granted to companies like Motorola Mobility, Navistar and Sears? For incumbents, how did you vote on the Sears plan in this fall's veto session?
I believe that the 2011 tax increases should be repealed and pension reform should be enacted.
Lower taxes and greater stability in the state pension system would create incentives for companies to remain in Illinois and create jobs.
Burdensome regulations should be eliminated so that businesses can focus on creating new jobs.
A cost-benefit analysis should be required for every new regulation.
Small businesses don't have high paid lobbyists in Springfield, but they're creating approximately 80% of the jobs in this state.
I would have voted against the Sears legislation.
As we have seen, Sears cut a deal with the legislature and then turned around announced cuts in the numbers of stores and their financial position has deteriorated. District 300 will suffer lost revenues as a result of this legislation.
I support Sears workers, but believe that tax rates should be cut across-the-board.
The government shouldn't pick winners and losers.
Instead, personal and corporate taxes should be cut across-the board, regulations should be reduced and state spending should be controlled.
Do you favor limiting how much money party leaders can give candidates during a general election? If elected, do you plan to vote for the current leader of your caucus' Why or why not?
I support placing limits on spending by party leadership.
I'll support the leader if he's focused on a message of lower taxes, less spending and real reform.
How, specifically, would you cut the budget? What does Illinois need to do to fix its status as a "deadbeat state?" How have you or will you vote on future gambling bills' What is your view of slots at racetracks' Casino expansion?
An oversized budget and an underfunded pension system are the key culprits in the state's fiscal crisis.
Below are my ideas to reduce the budget and reform the pension system in this state:
-- An immediate 10% cut in administrative expenses of each state department and agency
-- Adoption of
a zero-based budget system;
-- A Blue Ribbon Commission should be appointed to recommend structural changes in the budget and spending cuts;
-- An immediate 25% cut in the legislature's operational budget and a 10% cut in legislative salaries;
-- Eliminate pensions for state legislators. (This is a part-time job with full-time benefits funded by taxpayers, The state legislature needs to lead by example);
-- Eliminate government paid mailings by legislators; and
-- Move additional Medicaid patients into managed care programs.
We need to dramatically reduce spending so that Illinois can pay its $8.3 billion of unpaid bills.
Tax increases have simply caused additional spending.
I oppose a large-scale expansion of gambling in Illinois.
I would support slot machines at racetracks in an effort to level the regional playing field. I do not support expansion of the number of casinos in Illinois.
What do you specifically support to deal with the state's pension gap? Would you vote for House Republican Leader Tom Cross's three-tier pension plan? Why or why not?
The pension funding gap is the result of legislators and politicians over promising and over committing to special interests. When they initially could not meet the obligations to the funding of the pension system they borrowed more money and put off the day of reckoning. These irresponsible acts have consequences and all parties will have to participate in order to get our fiscal house in order.
Below is a brief overview of steps needed in this state for pension reform:
-- Eliminate pensions for state legislators; and -- For existing employees, as Option 1, protect the existing defined benefit pension benefits earned to date and going forward convert employees into 401(k) plans similar to those offered in the private sector.
Going forward, some employees should also have the option of joining the Social Security system and receiving a smaller 401(k) matching payment from the State than offered under Option 1.
I prefer my recommended approach above, but would support Cross's legislation if it's the only alternative on the floor.
Should gay marriage be legalized? Should Illinois define life as beginning at conception as others have? How would you vote on a concealed carry firearm plan? Should the death penalty be reinstated?
I believe that marriage should be limited to that between a man and a woman.
I believe that life begins at conception.
I would support legislation that bans abortion, except to save the life of the mother and in cases of reported rape and incest.
I support a concealed carry law for Illinois.
I support reinstatement of the death penalty.