Candidate Full Name: Brad Schneider
Office: U.S. Congress, 10th District
Email Address: email@example.com
Web Site: www.schneiderforcongress.com
Campaign Name: Schneider for Congress
Campaign Office Mailing Address: 155 Revere Drive Ste 12, Northbrook, Illinois 60062
Phone: (847) 748-3788
Survey Questions (Character limit of 2,000 per response)
1. Please tell us about yourself, your background and why you believe you are qualified to hold this office.
My wife Julie and I live in Deerfield where we've made our home, built our careers, and most importantly, raised our two sons, Adam and Daniel. Prior to serving in Congress, I spent more than two decades helping businesses create jobs and grow. I advised companies large and small, many family-owned, guiding them through the challenges of today's economy.
Now, in Congress, I'm working to break through the gridlock and am focused on getting our economy back on track, growing our economy and creating long-term opportunities for an expanding middle class. I've stood up for families on important issues, including fighting for a woman's right to choose, a sustainable environment, sensible gun measures, extending unemployment insurance, LGBT equality and immigration reform. And when the Tea Party recklessly shut down the government, I returned my paycheck because in the real world, if people don't do their jobs, they don't get paid.
It's also why I worked with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to help pass a bipartisan budget last year-the first by a divided Congress in more than 25 years.
As a member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, I am active in maintaining the U.S. leadership position in an increasingly complex world, helping confront threats like Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons, Russia's incursions into Ukraine, and the emerging menace of ISIS. I've also established myself as a leader in advocating for a strong U.S-Israel partnership, ensuring that this relationship remains strong, steadfast and secure.
I believe our best days are still ahead of us. I have no doubt that the American "can-do" spirit will power us forward and sustain the promise of a better future for the next generation.
2. What are your thoughts on President Obama's plan for military action in Iraq and Syria?
The terrorist organization ISIS, or Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, represents a clear and present danger to American national security, both directly to American interests and as a destabilizing force in an important region.
I voted to give our military the funding and authority it needs to help contain ISIS and ultimately eliminate the threat they pose. It's critical that the U.S. works with our international partners, and in particular our allies in the region, to stop the spread of this dangerous threat. I also remain resolute in my belief that the U.S. engagement in Iraq and Syria must not involve combat troops on the ground.
In regards to the broader Middle East, it's important that the U.S. continues to show leadership in working with our allies in the region, both diplomatically and militarily. However, we must understand that it is not our duty, nor do we have the ability, to solve all the region's problems. We can and must work with those in the region who want to stand up and take on the challenges and threats to their future, but the realization of that future must depend on those that call the region home.
Finally, it's essential that the U.S. and the international community does not lose its focus on stopping Iran's nuclear program. Doing so requires continued sanctions pressure, not partial deals or partial relief for partial steps. The current negotiations, scheduled to conclude in November, must not be exploited by Iran as a delaying tactic to continue enrichment activity and further its research and development. Iran must completely abandon its nuclear weapons program before receiving sanctions relief. Any proposal that does not effectively prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, not just for a couple of years, but for at least a generation, cannot be accepted.
3. Several major retailers recently disclosed they experienced data breaches. What can Congress do to help prevent this?
Every day, websites, databases and operating networks are threatened by criminal organizations, foreign governments and other groups trying to hack into their systems. These breaches, affecting our businesses, banks, newspapers and even federal agencies, are happening far too often, putting sensitive information at risk.
Cyber attacks not only open our personal sensitive information to attack, they can also result in billions of dollars in stolen intellectual property and have the potential to shut down critical infrastructure such as our power grids and financial systems.
Earlier this year, I supported legislation that gives our businesses additional tools to protect themselves and their customers against cyber attacks. This legislation would finally allow the intelligence community to share information in a more timely way with businesses whose firewalls may be under attack. It makes no sense for the intelligence community to have information available to prevent or limit a cyber attack but for us to lack a legal framework for them to share this information with the company at risk. I also offered a measure that would allow independent contractors to be eligible for security clearances needed to help businesses handle cyber threat intelligence. This is critical so that our small and medium-sized businesses, which often lack the resources to hire and pay full-time experts, can hire the most capable individual or organizations to help them analyze their network information and protect their customers from a cyber breach.
At the same time, we must balance reforms with our privacy. The right to privacy is one of they key values we cherish as Americans. That's why I voted to end the NSA's mass collection of our meta-data. We've still got a way to go on this issue, and we must to reform our system so that it's adequately balancing our safety with our right to privacy.
4. Can the budget deficit be controlled only by spending cuts or does the federal government need to raise more revenue? If you favor more revenue, should there be a general tax hike?
We must address our budget deficit in a way that reflects our values and priorities and doesn't put the greatest burden on the most vulnerable-our middle class, our students and our seniors.
We can and must do more to reduce spending, and I support making sensible cuts. For example, we should eliminate unproductive and outdated tax subsidies and loopholes, such as the subsidies we give to large oil and gas companies. And while it's critical that we look for ways to tighten our belts, not all cuts are wise, justified or advised. We must also continue to invest in our future, including investing in innovation, infrastructure and ensuring we continue to educate the most capable workforce in the world.
I strongly oppose, and voted twice against, the Ryan Budget because it flies in the face of our values. The irresponsible tax breaks and draconian cuts to vital programs do not represent our values and priorities. Rather, the Ryan Budget hurts our middle class, students and seniors by gutting education funding, ending the Medicare guarantee and putting a greater burden on those least able to afford it.
And while we look to address our budget, we also need comprehensive tax reform. Our outdated tax code is straining our economy, restricting job growth and hurting communities. We need reform that broadens the tax base, lowers corporate tax rates, closes outdated and unnecessary loopholes, reduces the tax burden on middle class families, and addresses the needs of pass through entities-S-corps, LLCs and partnerships. Toward that end, I introduced a bipartisan measure to ensure that small businesses' tax structure is addressed as a part of overall tax reform. Passthrough entities represent 90 percent of businesses and this measure works to help protect them in tax reform proposals.
5. What are your thoughts on immigration reform?
Since our nation's founding, immigrants have provided the diversity, energy and knowledge that helped make America the dynamic and prosperous nation we are today.
Unfortunately, our current immigration system is broken and holding back our economic potential. Deficiencies in the legal immigration process coupled with imperfect border security have resulted in an unprecedented amount of illegal immigration. There are more than 11 million undocumented immigrants living within our borders, functioning in a shadow economy that disregards their personal integrity and disadvantages American workers.
It's essential that we enact comprehensive immigration reform. I strongly support the bipartisan immigration measure passed last year by the Senate. I have repeatedly called for a vote in the House on this comprehensive immigration reform legislation, which I'm confident would pass overwhelmingly. This legislation would reform our nation's broken immigration system and address border security in a bipartisan and comprehensive way. It would strengthen border security, increase visas for skilled workers and provide a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants currently in the country. It's disappointing that rather than work to secure the border and fix our broken immigration system, too many in Congress continue to play politics and refuse to move
forward on immigration reform.
I also strongly support the DREAM Act. I believe the DREAM Act is an essential part of a comprehensive immigration solution. I believe we must provide undocumented immigrant students who graduate from U.S. high schools the opportunity to further their education and pursue the American dream-the vision that anyone from any background can work hard and succeed.