Candidate Profiles: October 9, 2012 

In November, mainers will head to the polls.Among other things, November’s ballot will ask us who we want representing our state in congress.During the weeks leading up to the election, TV 5 will feature the three major candidates for u-s senate as well as two candidates for district two in congress.Each one was asked the same question, and given up to 90 seconds to respond. We will air their answers unedited and in random order.We started Tuesday morning with the Congressional 2nd District Campaign. Kevin Raye and Mike Michaud were asked to respond to this question:The national debt has ballooned to 16 trillion dollars. No one likes higher taxes, but given the deficit, do we have to raise taxes to get out of debt?Kevin Raye- “At a time when the economy is really in crisis, and we have, you know, unemployment over 8 percent for 43 straight months as we sit here today, in early September. 43 straight months of unemployment, over 8 percent. The prospect of tax increases is a frightening one, because a tax increases dampen economic activity in economic growth. And it doesn’t seem to me to be logical that that’s what we should be doing at a time when we desperately need to grow the economy, to take more money out of the economy with taxes. We’re seeing, you know, huge tax increases as part of Obamacare, and we’re seeing the potential of, with the Bush tax cuts set to expire, that the death tax on small family businesses and small family farms, could escalate sharply and really infringe on the ability of these small businesses and farms to continue to the next generation, disrupt a way of life. With all of those issues, and the fact that spending has exploded under President Obama with the support of Congressman Michaud. It doesn’t seem to me the problem is that we don’t have enough taxes.”Congressman Michaud- “I think that if you look at, for instance, the different groups have been out there, the Bowl-Simpson commission that was established – a very diverse group of individuals, former members of congress on both sides of the aisle. When you look at the Dimichi group, likewise, a very diverse group from both sides of the aisle that focus on how we bring our deficit in line and move forward. In both groups realize that you cannot do with just raising taxes or cutting programs. It has to be a combination of both. And i think congress has to bite the bullet. I’ve served in the legislature for a number of years, and we have to have a balanced budget, here at the state level, and there’s no reason why we cannot do it at the federal level as well. It’s going to have to take a combination of both. When you look at the budget crisis that we’re in today, i think its, it’s also an opportunity to look outside the box, to try to look at ways we can do things differently, and save money. A good example, health and human services: they go into nursing home to do a survey, to find out whether they meet all the criteria for health and human services, to be licensed as a nursing home. If it’s a state veterans home as well, the VA goes in, they do the same thing to see whether or not it meets all the criteria, so we have six state veteran homes here in Maine, so in essence they have two agencies going in, doing the same type of survey. For the VA, for instance, if they were to work out an agreement to, with health and human services, they could save, over a ten-year period, about 50 million dollars.”