Jason Gonzales, Candidate for State Representative-22nd District

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Monday, February 15, 2016

Candidate Full Name: Jason Gonzales

Office: State Representative-22nd District

Party: Democrat

Email Address: info@jasonforillinois.com

Web Site: www.jasonforillinois.com

Campaign Name: Jason for Illinois

Mailing Address: P.O. Box 291076 Chicago, IL 60629

Phone: 773-696-0777

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.

I understand how it is to come from a working class background and have to struggle to make it. I overcame many obstacles like making poor decisions, getting into trouble, and dropping out of high school at 16 only to become the first in my family to graduate college and eventually graduate with master's degrees from Harvard and MIT.

I'm a problem solver, who brings a diversity of experience; I worked in a labor union, started a successful small business, and founded an international non-profit. I've worked in both the private and public sectors. I understand how the economy and government work. I have met with world leaders in order to find solutions to some of the world's most difficult problems like accessibility to clean water.

2. Governor Bruce Rauner and other politicians are pushing for term limits for Illinois legislators. Do you favor term limits? Why or why not? If yes, what type of term limits do you favor?

I support term limits for elected officials. We have too many career politicians that become untouchable and are working for special interests and corporations, not the people of our state. These positions are not meant to be careers. We need more people that run for office because they care about our state and want to make the necessary decisions to move us forward, not people that will abuse their power and use their positions for personal gain. When you combine redistricting and gerrymandering powers with having no term limits, you reach a very dangerous conclusion, which is not the democratic process that the people of Illinois deserve.

3. What solution would you propose to get a budget passed in the State of Illinois?

We need to get our state working again. This budget holdout is hurting the most vulnerable people in our society and it's an embarrassment. If we can't even get a budget passed, we aren't going to be able to address the biggest problems that our state faces. If elected, I will work to get a budget passed. I will use my common ground with the governor on things like term limits and redistricting reform, which the majority of people in our state agree with, in order to gain leverage and prevent any attempts by the governor to limit workers' rights to organize, collectivity bargain, and workplace protections.

4. Chicago is the only city in Illinois with an appointed school board. Other large American cities, including San Francisco, elect their school board members. Would you favor changing Illinois law to provide Chicago with an elected school board? Why or why not?

I support a transition to an elected school board for the Chicago Public Schools. We are not making a strong enough investment in public education. Each school should have enough staff members, teachers, and aids to properly educate our children. We need to address over-crowded classrooms and make sure every child has access to pre-k education, not just the wealthier ones. We should make physical, art, health, and music education available in each school, not just some. The restoring of extra curricular activities and other after school programs that keep our young people in productive environments is essential. The fact that Illinois has the largest funding gap in the nation between the poorest and wealthiest schools needs to be corrected in order to guarantee every child has access to a quality public education.

5. Voters say they are turned off by the negative and misleading TV ads that dominate the airwaves. However, campaign and election experts say candidates rely on them because "they work." Will you and your campaign agree to refrain from running negative ads from now until the election?

We have not and will not be going negative on our opponent, despite our opponent flooding mailboxes and running television advertisements with not only negative and misleading information, but flat out lies. In a time where we are facing such pressing issues, we need people who will bring us together to solve problems, not drive us further apart. The only things we will send out about our opponent is a contrasting piece illustrating where he stands and where we stand on the issues. The people of Illinois are sick of lies and machine politics that are ruining our state.

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