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Six Republicans seek 32nd seat

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Kevin Hoffman
September 9, 2010

The six Republican candidates for the 32nd Assembly District believe Wisconsin’s spending has gone too far.


Mel Nieuwenhuis, Thomas Stelling, Tyler August, John Finley, Adam Gibbs and Dan Necci will be on the ballot to replace Rep. Thomas Lothian, who decided not to run for re-election.


The winner of the Republican primary will face the lone Democratic candidate, Doug A. Harrod of Genoa City, in the November general election.


The 32nd Assembly District includes the villages of Darien, Fontana, Sharon, Walworth and Williams Bay; the cities of Delavan, Lake Geneva and the Walworth County portion of Genoa City; and the southern Walworth County townships of Darien, Delavan, Geneva, Lyons, Sharon, Walworth, Linn and Bloomfield.


The candidates answered the following questions:


-- What is the most important issue facing the next governor and Legislature?
August: “We must get spending under control and cut where cutting makes sense, which to me is pretty much everywhere. Raising taxes is the last thing in the world we should ever consider, especially in this economy. … I will never vote for a tax increase of any kind, ever. If I do, I will resign the office the next day.”
Finley: “The debt could bankrupt us all. I agree with (Milwaukee County executive and candidate for governor) Scott Walker.”
Gibbs: “I believe the single most important issue facing our next governor and Legislature is the halting of the high-speed train project. The Dems are trying to spend us into being ‘pot committed’ and force the project to continue.”

“When elected, I will stand unified with our governor in not only freezing that project but also sending the grant money back to Washington.”


Necci: “The most important issue facing the leaders of tomorrow is jobs. If our people cannot work, they cannot thrive and they will either vacate the state or become servants of it.”
Nieuwenhuis: “We cannot continue the tax-and-spend policies of the past eight years. We need to put Wisconsin back on track towards recovery and prosperity. It’s time for Legislatures to start saying, ‘No.’ We need to change Wisconsin’s heavy regulation and high-tax reputation.”
Stelling: “Jobs are the first and foremost. Without jobs, there is nothing in the future but spending cuts, reduced service and increased taxes.”
-- Why should the citizens of your district vote for you?
August: “I’m the only candidate in the race with proven, conservative leadership within state government … I have seen firsthand the destruction Gov. (Jim) Doyle and his liberal cronies have done in our state, and I am the only candidate with the necessary experience to tackle the more important issues of the day.”
Finley: “Because I will serve the people of the 32nd District instead of the many outside special interests.”
Gibbs: “Through my work with Rep. Steve Nass, I observed and studied committee meetings, public hearings, floor sessions and constituent meetings … I know what it takes to function successfully in a legislative role, yet I am not mired in the system. You will have a representative who is able to navigate the process yet is able to bring a fresh perspective.”
Necci: “I know what it means to truly represent another’s interest before my own and to carefully guide them through the morass that Madison has created. It is for this reason that I will be the strong, clear voice of our common voices and values in the Legislature.”
Nieuwenhuis: “We need experienced leaders that have demonstrated the ability to work collaboratively with businesses to increase capitol investments and create jobs. As an elected official, I have worked to bring 40-plus new businesses to Delavan that have created hundreds of jobs.”
Stelling: “I should be elected to represent the entire district, not just from a specific geographic area.

“For almost 60 years, I have lived and worked within Walworth, Kenosha and Racine counties. I know and understand the diversity of the population in this district and have interacted with the residents and non-residents on both a private and professional basis.”


-- Do you identify with the tea party movement and why?
August: “I identify with the tea party movement and those within it because I am one of those within it. Through my involvement with Americans for Prosperity, I have had the opportunity to work closely with many tea party activists and have seen firsthand their dedication to the conservative cause. … I am proud to fight along side them to win our country back.”
Finley: “I attended a recent tea party in Madison and was not impressed.”
Gibbs: “I value the tea party movement for getting people active, involved and educated about government’s role in our lives. It represents (an) impassioned ground of people unwilling to settle for sub-par representation.”
Necci: “I identify with anyone who holds most dear the intent of the framers and the inherent rights granted by the Constitution of the United States of America. For it is that document and the system of government set up around it that separates the United States from every other nation-state conceived in the history of man.”
Nieuwenhuis: “I do identify with the frustration that people have with government and are fed up with the tax-and-spend policies in the national and state governments.”
Stelling: “I am running for office for the first time out of a desire to serve the district and change the status quo; both principles that the tea party seems to encourage. I do not identify with the tea party, just as a conservative business owner that believes in state rights over federal controls and that less government supports economic growth, entrepreneurship and business growth, which leads to jobs.”

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