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Dan Whittacre 2014 PA-PAC US House Questionnaire


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Dan Whittacre candidate for North Carolina's US House District 1, 2014 People's Alliance PAC questionnaire

Published in: News & Politics
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Dan Whittacre 2014 PA-PAC US House Questionnaire

  1. 1. 1 People’s Alliance PAC 2014 Questionnaire for US House of Representatives Candidates The Durham People’s Alliance Political Action Committee will make endorsements in the upcoming elections. So that we can make the best possible decision, we would like to hear more about you and your candidacy. Please complete the following questionnaire and return it to Tom Miller not later than March 17, 2014. You may submit your completed questionnaire to Tom’s e- mail address,, or you may deliver it to his home at 1110 Virginia Avenue, Durham, NC 27705 before 11:00 a.m. on the morning of the 17th. If you would like to have an electronic copy of this questionnaire, send Tom an e-mail at the address above. Your failure to provide us with responses to the questions below will not disqualify you from consideration for our endorsement, but it may place you at a disadvantage. When completing this questionnaire, please begin your response to each question by repeating the question as it is set out below and underlining or italicizing it to distinguish the question from your answer. If the complete answer to a question is contained in your resume, you may respond to the question by noting “See attached resume.” Please provide us with a copy of your resume. Please make your answers complete, but concise. Your responses will not be treated as confidential. Candidate’s name _Dan Whittacre______________________________House District___1_____ Residence address _224 Bellewood Drive, Henderson, NC 27536_________________________ Cell-phone Number _919-339-0965__________ e-mail _whittacreforcongress@gmail.com______ 1. What do you see as the primary sources of our current economic problems? The escalating cost of fuel in our nation coupled with the artificial value of real estate followed by the crash has destroyed small businesses and retirement accounts. The desolation of retirement accounts meant that the retirement eligible need to work longer to sustain themselves. The usual turnover for the last decade did not occur. It has bottlenecked the process. It was good to see 6.7% unemployment rate in NC today, 17 March. What measures should Congress use to address them? Suspend all tariff exemptions on consumer goods manufactured overseas would be a good start. Then we need to shore up manufacturing here in the US by funding cooperative buyouts of failed or failing businesses. Let’s get people working. As for the cost of fuel, legislation needs to be passed to authorize the building of additional domestic fuel distilleries and the construction of Thorium Reactors to replace coal fired power production which is currently a source of concern for NC due to coal ash. How would you begin to reduce the
  2. 2. 2 federal deficit? Require all new spending to be offset by cuts from other programs as a start. We need to reduce spending. And when members of my party say that we need to increase the debt ceiling or there is no way to spend less, they sound like those who deny global warming. There are redundant programs that could be eliminated yesterday and the government would operate without issue. This could mean the loss of government jobs in the short run and the expansion of the private sector in the long. Is this an issue of not enough revenue or of overspending? The short answer is Yes to both. There is a balance that could be had. The Congress in place during the Clinton years demonstrated that we can curb spending and balance a budget resulting in a surplus. When we have a surplus we can pay off the debt. What are some of the possible negative consequences of your proposed solutions? It will be painful for the country in the early implementation stages. Just like getting a shot it will be over with quickly and the country will start to get better. Of course, there is a likelihood to start a small recession before the country starts to see a strong rebound. 2. Are you in favor of reducing government spending in any specific areas? If so, please list your top three specific areas and explain your reasons. 1. Education at the Federal level has hurt education at the state level. I would reintegrate the Department of Education back into the Department of Health and Human Services as it was many years ago. Reducing the overall expense of maintaining a separate department. 2. I would also seek to role the Air Force into the Army, much like the Marine Corps is Part of the Navy. 3. There is also significant overspending in the Department of Homeland Security that could be eliminated by conducting a full audit and then slashing budgets while shifting funds to address the border control (or lack of control). Are you in favor of increasing government spending in any specific areas? If so, please list your top three specific areas and explain your reasons. 1. I would increase the size of our military manpower significantly more than we currently have. I think we have weakened ourselves militarily since 2004 with the initial downsizing that has continued ‘til today. 2. I would fully stock and expand our nation’s food reserves that have been depleted since the late 90’s. We are not prepared for any serious catastrophes within our own borders. 3. Our nation’s infrastructure is failing and needs serious money spent to reconstruct or repair. 3. What changes, if any, do you support in federal entitlement programs (Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Veterans programs, etc.)? Unlike my party challenger, I support ensuring Veteran’s benefits are never cut. Our current Congressman voted to cut military healthcare benefits for military retirees while saying he didn’t. I know firsthand because I am a military retiree that had my health insurance cut (costing me $2800 a year more out of pocket expense). These programs were supposed to be protected and fully funded. I realize funding is tight but reducing or eliminating needed services for the poor, aged, infirm and our nation’s military force does a disservice to who are supposed to be as citizens of this great nation. We need to do a better job of carrying for those that need care or sacrificed their own desires to ensure our freedoms.
  3. 3. 3 4. What are most important issues facing North Carolina and the nation? If elected, what are your top three priorities in addressing those issues? 1. Energy independence 2. Education 3. Jobs 5. How would you evaluate the job performance of your party in the US Congress under the Obama administration? An opportunity was wasted during the first two years of President Obama’s first term. Little to no legislation moved forward due to party infighting and an over abundant focus on healthcare. Since then, it has been a constant blame game with little to nothing getting done. The current party members in office need to go and fresh faces and fresh ideas need to fill the halls of DC. Are there any specific ways in which your party could better serve the American people moving forward? Stop blaming the Republican Party for all the woes. 6. Approval of Congress is at historic lows and the American people have lost confidence in the ability of our elected officials to govern the country and get things done. In what ways can you help be part of the solution to this problem? I have worked my whole adult life in situations where disagreement and discord was the tone of the day. I was able to lead many a disruptive group into harmony and accomplished great things. What we need is someone who can work with others publicly without concern for the political ramifications. I know that I can do that. What measures or reforms, procedural or otherwise, do you believe would promote a more functional government? Our system of rules and procedures currently allows for a functional government when personal pride and party hatred are done away with. We may not agree on all fronts but we must agree that all parties involved want the best for America. When we start there, we can move forward and accomplish much. 7. How do you evaluate current US foreign policy? I think we are at the pinnacle of good relations with nations globally when evaluating our relations with nations like China. We could stand to improve our relationship with Russia and many of the nations to the south. What next steps would you propose the US take? Continued discussions (both formal and informal) with North Korea and Iran needs to be a serious and continuos effort. I truly believe these two nations could one day be brought around to see us as friendly to them and not a threat. Choosing to isolate and denigrate on the global stage only serves to stir resentment, anger and hatred. Do you believe there are any current situations that either now or in the near future may warrant US military action? Iran and North Korea stand on the brink of war at all times. While not directly targeting us, they do target our close allies in both regions. Now we have the current situation with Russia and Crimea. Sensitive steps should be taken to ensure that the people of that region of the world are having their desires heard before we act too hastily. What role do you think drones should play in US foreign policy? We have been using aerial assets to gather intel on foreign regimes for the better part of the last century. The U-2 Spy Plane has been in operation over many of these radicalized nations, which are not friendly to us, since the 1957. The use of drones to conduct surveillance is an extension of these programs without risking pilots. When these drones, however, interfere with sovereign nations rights in accord with international law, we have overstepped our bounds and such efforts should be terminated.
  4. 4. 4 8. How would you propose reforming US immigration policy? Seal the border properly and offer a path to citizenship to those who are currently here. The later part of the plan can and should only be addressed after the first is fully implemented. I have no doubt that we can install a fence line and intrusion detection system that will prevent future infiltration by those wishing to illegally enter our nation. 9. What do you believe are the three worst and three best decisions made by the US Supreme Court since 2008? Best – McDonald v. Chicago, Knox v. Service Employees Int'l Union, Hosanna-Tabor v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Worst - National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, Ali v. Federal Bureau of Prisons 10. Do you support President Obama’s call to increase the national minimum wage to $10.10? No, I think that if we were in better economic times, then $10.10 would make sense, but we are in the recovery phase of a recession. Businesses need more recovery time and the national unemployment rate needs to improve before this sort of burden is placed on them. 11. Are you concerned about the affordability of a college education in the United States? Yes. If so, what role can the federal government play in addressing your concerns? Money received from the Federal Government needs to have stipulations that the funds be used strictly for educational costs and not for frivolous adornment. Universities have become big business with a leisure resort recruitment mindset. The more leisure they ply potential applicants with the more likely they are to recruit. It is no longer about the cost of education but has become being about the cost of running a 24/7 gym spa with a full service masseuse. Do you support President Obama’s student loan reform efforts, and, if not, what would you do differently? I believe that banks can create arbitrary rates to ensure loan repayment that pays for the servicing the loan and substantial profit. To do on the backs of those just starting their careers after college is the newest form of slavery our nation has. It takes decades for some college graduates to repay loans for college and the lower the loan rate or available programs which provide early loan repayment for service to country and/or community are great ways to break those oppressive ties to the banks. I fully support our Presidents initiatives to make college more affordable. 12. Do you support increased funding for homeowner counseling, legal assistance, and the home protection pilot program to help keep families in homes and reduce foreclosures? I think we may see the end of these programs as the housing slump dissipates. The counseling portion will and should continue as part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Standard legal assistance in the form of a standard FAQ can replace live legal support. The financial aid programs need to end as the curtailment of massive foreclosure subsides to pre-bubble level. What other measures would you take? Expand the role of HUD in local communities to deal with abandoned property reclamation. The blight that communities will see in the next ten years will only serve to further demoralize these already suffering cities. 13. What are your views on the rights (including whether any such rights exist) of homosexual persons to marry? I am of the opinion that all persons have identical rights under the law
  5. 5. 5 to marry. This means that a homosexual male has the same right to marry a woman as a heterosexual male. The question that is asked of society is whether or not homosexuals should have the right to marry someone of the same sex. For years our society made it illegal to for someone to engage in the act of homosexual forms of intercourse. Then society began to strike down the sodomy laws as too intrusive in a person’s private affairs. The state of marriage was determined long ago as being between a man and a woman and that to choose a homosexual relationship meant that marriage to your sexual partner would never occur. I agree that marriage should remain between a man and a woman. In 1878, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Reynolds v. US (a case addressing polygamy) that marriage is between one man and one woman. Until the US is prepared to accept Polygamy alongside a plethora of legitimate consensual relationships desiring marriage it should remain as the high court ruled long ago. Did you vote for or against Amendment One? For 14. What is your position on the Affordable Care Act and its implementation? I was against the Act in its final form. The legislation and eventual law encompassed too much in a single bill and resulted in the unaware presumption that it, as a whole, would benefit us. The problem that people are now aware of, is that the promises made do not match the language of the law. I am a retired Federal Agent from the US Department of Health and Human Services. I read the law and found the fine, the minimum policy standard requirements, and enforcement provisions and came out as a Democrat opposed to it. I was characterized by our Congressman in the last primary election as knowing nothing about healthcare and demonized as being opposed. I have been proven right and he has been proven wrong. So now the question is, where do we go from here? The law stands as constitutional. People will begin to feel the pain of new required insurance payments or fines. The already burdened healthcare model will be further strained. We need to go back to the drawing board with new legislation that cleans up what does not work and keep what does. As for the implementation of the law; one word….Awful. Secretary Sibelius should fire everyone involved in letting the contractor do what they did. The amount of money spent for a simple and secure database contractual system with projections in the initial 100,000 patron per hour scheme is a tried and tested internet reality. For the contractor to not get that correct meant that there were no knowledgeable managers overseeing the contract. Shame on DHHS for dropping the ball. 15. Do you believe that contraception should be mandated under employer health care? I have yet to see a policy offered by an employer where the employee gets to say what is or is not covered. That is typically a deal between the business and the insurance company. If the employee doesn’t like the policy then they can purchased private insurance to cover the gap or another policy entirely. They can also choose to not be employed at that company. The US Government should not interfere at that level of business in the US. Do you support the "Obama compromise" that women employees could obtain contraception directly from the insurance companies, with no increase in their premium? If the insurance companies want to offer that as a gap policy at no increased expense then as stated in the first part of my response, I think that is ok. In fact that should be the extent of government role in that process. As Presidents have bargain in labor disputes in the past, this is no different. I seems a very logical and astute way to bridge the
  6. 6. 6 convictional divide. How would you/did you vote for the Blunt amendment that would allow any employer to refuse to cover any kind of health care service by citing "moral reasons?" First let me state that this amendment had no business in a highway funding bill. It is this kind of political gamesmanship that has turned people off of those currently serving and the low approval rating of the Congress in general. With my opinion aside I can state that I would have voted against it. The Senator opens the amendment by quoting an often over quoted Thomas Jefferson invoking the sentiment that there exists the right of a person conscience that should supersede all civil authority and yet government has yet to allow the town drunk to pee anywhere they please. He goes on to claim that Government has never been involved in dictating coverage or care requirements until the impositions of the Affordable Care Act. Perhaps the Senator is unaware that Medicare, Medicaid, Indian Health Services, Tricare and many other government sponsored medical programs do just that and often in league with the very insurance companies in question who contract with the government. On the amendments face it is factually flawed and I believe incongruent with the ends it was trying to achieve. It was merely a political ploy. 16. Do you believe that Planned Parenthood should receive federal support? The origins of Planned Parenthood are horrendous. I do not believe that the modern incarnation of the organization is the same and do believe that it renders a valuable service that no other organization offers in our society. As a teacher, I see the results of poor decisions by young people and know that they need a support structure that should include the voice of Planned Parenthood. Federal funding for such a program should go through the same grant making process as other programs which wish to offer services similarly situated. If awarded a grant then the funding should be used as described in application. Direct funding of the program should not occur at the exclusion of other programs. 17. Will you support increased federal relief to states and spending on infrastructure for as long as unemployment and underemployment remain high? I agree with spending increases in infrastructure improvement and repair. Our nation has a deteriorating infrastructure often substantially inferior to nations that we send large aid packages too. Also states need funding to provide services at pre-recession levels. I agree that relief funds should be dispersed in the short run with government oversight to improve state spending and improve state revenue streams. 18. What action, if any, do you support the federal government taking in decreasing gun violence in the United States? I believe in the second amendment as written. I think that laws that prohibit the right to keep and bear arms is in violation of the Constitution. Stronger penalties that are enforced would prove more useful than to prohibit the possession of firearms by lawful citizens used to defend themselves. I would propose changes to federal laws that would strengthen the rights of gun owners and serve to deter those who would use guns illegally. Would you support a federal ban on assault rifles? The term ‘assault rifle’ is made up and describes no specific type of weapon based on capabilities but rather on the ‘military look’ of a weapon. As a retired military police officer and retired Federal Agent, I can say that when people use the term ‘assault weapon’ what they are really trying to describe is ‘automatic weapon’. Our current laws making possession of ‘automatic weapons’ work very well. We have had no incidents of violent
  7. 7. 7 crime leading to death in the civilian population using ‘automatic weapons’. As for the weapons that are being targeted (ie, AK variants, AR variants and high capacity semi- auto firearms) by current laws and anti-gun political groups, they simply haven’t looked at the facts. More guns in a community owned by law abiding citizen equals a safer community with less crime. I would not support a federal ban on assault rifle. 19. What are your concerns, if any, with the state of campaign finance in US elections? As someone who has run a campaign on less than $5000 against an incumbent who spent over $200,000; I can say that allowing money to dictate the results of an election is not what our founders envisioned. It makes it very frustrating knowing that as a school teacher, I work ten months a year in a full time job with weekends, holidays and summers off, but still do not have the time to raise funds at the level of full time politicians. During the last election, the congressman published outright lies about me that I became aware of in certain markets only after the election simply because he knew I didn’t have the funds to fight it with counter advertising. So it becomes a process of who can outspend the other candidate in the information war that is modern politics. What measures would you support Congress taking to address your concerns? I really like the current effort to limit campaign donations to those from the area of representation. If only those within the 24 counties of the 1st Congressional District could contribute, then that would make for a fairer contest. There could also be a period designates strictly for campaign fundraising in a calendar year. 20. Do you believe that global warming is real and caused by humans? I know that global warming is real. I experienced the ozone hole while living in Australia. The cause of global warming is far more reaching than just humans. We are definitely a part of the problem, but not the only cause. Mother Nature has a hand in the process as well. Global tidal changes are effected by our moon which is slowly moving away from Earth’s orbit (just one of the minor players in a global warming equation). If so, what actions should Congress take to mitigate the affects of global warming? Thorium reactors to replace 90% or greater of power production in the US. France has become the leading nation in green energy production with 80% percent of the energy being produced by Nuclear Power Plants. While many fear nuclear power, Thorium is the best of both worlds; plentiful fuel for the reactors and safe production without fear of meltdown. Please describe how your religious and philosophical beliefs may affect your conduct and decision making if you are elected. If elected, I would serve primarily according to the will of the people of the whole of the district. In our modern computer age, the survey process could address all of the potential vote in congress and provide for valuable insight into what people think on a variety of issues. I also plan to host a number of town hall meetings across the district and not just when there are controversial issues on the US political stage. I find my religious beliefs and my philosophical beliefs to be in harmony and very transparent to all whom I come in contact with. 21. Where were you born and where have you lived? Born in Tooele, Utah, moved to Mt Sterling, Kentucky when I was in second grade. During the summer of my 7th grade year, my family moved to Spotsylvania, Virginia. After graduation from High School, I worked as a truck driver for Bailey’s Moving and Storage, moving household goods up and down the East Coast until I turned 19. At 19 I volunteered for missionary service in my church and went to Perth, Australia for two years. After returning from a wonderful
  8. 8. 8 yet hard missionary service, I met and married Joanna Ovard promptly moving to Cedar City, Utah while she attended Southern Utah University. I joined the US Air Force while there and left for basic training and the DoD Law Enforcement/Security Police Academy at Lackland AFB in San Antonio, Texas for about six months and then onto Air Base Defense School at Fort Dix in New Jersey. My first duty station was at Yokota AB in Tokyo Japan. While in Japan I was deployed to the following locations as temporary duty assignments (Hong Kong, South Korea (various locations), China (various locations), several former Soviet Military installations, Antarctica, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Diego Garcia, and Hawaii). I was there for four years before being reassigned to Lackland Air Force Base as an instructor at the Security Forces (formerly the DoD Law Enforcement/Security Police Academy). 18 months later I was selected for Air Force Officer Training School at Maxwell AFB in Montgomery, Alabama, where I training for 3 months. I then relocated with my family to my first officer assignment at Minot AFB in Minot, North Dakota. After 2 ½ years there I was sent to a command assignment at Yokota AB, Tokyo Japan. After 1 year, I separated from the active Air Force and went back to Spotsylvania, Virginia for 4 months before being employed as a Federal Agent for the US Department of Health and Human Services in the Region 7, Office of the Inspector General in Kansas City, Missouri. I was stationed as member of the US Air Force Reserves at Dobbins ARB in Atlanta, Georgia and then transferred to Nellis AFB, Las Vegas, Nevada. While in the reserves I received training at my assigned units and also selected and attended International Officer Training in the Netherlands for a month. I was activated and sent to Iraq in 2007. I moved to Henderson, North Carolina, summer of 2009 and have made it my home. 22. Who did you vote for in the 2008 and 2012 presidential and gubernatorial elections? I voted for President Barack Obama and Governor Bev Perdue and Pat McCrory respectively. Thank you for your prompt and thoughtful response to our questionnaire. THE DURHAM PEOPLE’S ALLIANCE POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE
  9. 9. Daniel-Lynn Whittacre 224 Bellewood Drive Henderson, NC 27536 252-436-6518 - OBJECTIVE - It is my lifelong ambition to serve others. - SKILLS - Computer Literate, Microsoft Office Skilled, Network Administrator Certified, Consummate Go-To Person, and Exceptional Orator - WORK EXPERIENCE - March 1995 - June 1999 Security Forces Enlisted US Air Force Yokota AB, Tokyo, Japan Enforced Federal/Military Laws on a US Air Force military base.- June 1999 - December 2000 Instructor US Air Force Lackland AFB, San Antonio, TX Community College of the Air Force Instructor assigned to the US Air Force Security Forces Academy teaching Criminal Justice, Constitutional Law, Hand to Hand Combat, and Fundamentals of Security.- January 2001 - August 2004 Security Forces Officer US Air Force Minot AFB, Minot, ND and Yokota AB, Tokyo, Japan Position of Management responsible for training, equipping and leading over 300 military police and managing military resources and budget in excess of $2 Billion.- August 2004 - June 2007 Security Forces Officer US Air Force Reserves Multiple Locations across the Continental US and Overseas Limited Duty Position of Management responsible for training, equipping and leading over 300 military police.- January 2005 - June 2007 Criminal Investigator US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Investigations Kansas City, MO Conducted complex health care related fraud investigations- June 2007 - July 2008 Executive Officer US Air Force Reservist (on active duty) Kansas City, MO Leader of 36 personnel; Responsible for the Kansas City Military Entrance Processing Station operations.- August 2009 - Present Senior Aerospace Science Instructor Northern Vance High School Henderson, NC Classroom Teacher and Department Chair for Vance County, NC, Air Force Junior ROTC program. Teaching Leadership and Aerospace Science.- -
  10. 10. EDUCATION - May 1995 - October 1999 Community College of the Air Force Various Locations Associate of Applied Science  Criminal Justice  4.0 Grade Point Average- March 2000 - July 2000 Community College of the Air Force Various Locations Associate of Applied Science  Instructor of Technology and Military Science  4.0 Grade Point Average- August 1999 - May 2000 Wayland Baptist University San Antonio, TX Bachelor of Science in Occupational Education  Human Services, Criminal Justice  3.637 Grade Point Average- March 2002 - June 2004 American Military University Various Locations Master of Arts  Criminal Justice, Executive Law Enforcement Management  3.86 Grade Point Average- - AWARDS AND HONORS - Eagle Scout US Air Force Meritorious Service Medal DoD Joint Service Commendation Medal Three US Air Force Commendation Medals DoD Joint Service Achievement Medal Three US Air Force Achievement Medals Two National Defense Service Medals Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal Iraq Campaign Medal Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal Global War on Terrorism Service Medal Armed Forces Reserve Medal with "M" Device Honorably Retired from US Air Force -