Democrat House hopeful Mullen offers his take on the issues
Posted: 10/19/2012 at 1:15 am
By: Tim Vandenack
• Economy/jobs:Small businesses need improved access to tax incentives and capital — on par with what “big oil” and large businesses already get — to promote their growth, which will lead to job creation. “So we need to level the playing field to actually reignite and stimulate the economy, starting on Main Street.”
• Health care reform: He falls short of calling for repeal of the Affordable Care Act — or Obamacare, President Obama's health care initiative — but directs plenty of criticism its way. There are “extraordinary problems” with it.
He worries that it amounts to overregulation of business, particularly the provision requiring companies with 51 or more workers to provide health care for workers, a measure that can turn a profitable firm into a money-losing one. He doesn't like the tax on medical devices, viewed by critics here as a hindrance to the orthopedic industry in Kosciusko County. He'd get rid of the independent board created per the legislation to help rein in Medicare spending.
On the positive side, he likes that the Affordable Care Act has helped give so many children coverage. He likes the provision allowing parents to keep their kids on their health plans until they're 26. He likes protections guaranteeing coverage even in the event of catastrophic illnesses.
“I'd like to repeal some of the bad pieces, but I'd like to focus on moving forward,” he said.
• Social Security: The way to help assure the system's long-term viability is through stimulating the economy, thus creating jobs. The more jobs there are, the more in payroll taxes there will be to maintain Social Security.
• Medicare: He opposes the proposal to overhaul Medicare put forth by GOP vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan, saying it'll increase health care costs for seniors. “That's unacceptable. ... We cannot go against the commitments that we've given our parents and grandparents. We need to make sure that Medicare is there for them.”
• “Main Street”: The middle class is bearing a disproportionate share of the tax load compared to the wealthy and that needs to be rectified. The “middle class and the working class and Main Street are getting left in the dark, left out in the cold, while Wall Street, big oil and big corporations have a tilt in the playing field, in their advantage.”
• Afghanistan:President Obama's plan to withdraw U.S. troops from the war in Afghanistan in 2014 isn't quick enough. “I'd actually like to speed it up.”
• Term limits: He's said he'd stay a max of three terms, or six years, in the U.S. House if elected. “I really do look at this as a tour of duty. Get in, make a difference, get out.”
Click here to read our profile of Brendan Mullen.
Click here to read our profile of Jackie Walorski and here for her perspective on some key issues.
Click here to read our profile of Joe Ruiz and here for his perspective on some key issues.
Click here to read our look at the campaigns and pointed political ads of the candidates seeking Indiana's 2nd District U.S. House seat.