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US Representative District 1

Choose one candidate to serve a two-year term in the U.S. House of Representatives. U.S. Representatives receive an annual salary of $174,000.

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  • John Bergman
    (Rep)

  • Candidate picture

    Ellis Boal
    (Grn)

  • Candidate picture

    Diane Bostow
    (L)

  • Candidate picture

    Lon Johnson
    (Dem)

Social Media

Biographical Information

Do you support and will you appear at campaign events with your party’s presidential nominee?

How would you rate the State of Michigan's response to the Flint water crisis?

Explain.

How would you rate the federal government’s response to the Flint water crisis?

Explain.

Should Congress provide funding to help Flint, and other cities across the U.S., reduce and eventually eliminate lead service lines?

Do you support deals like the Trans-Pacific Partnership? Do they help create jobs in the U.S.? Why or why not?

What do you think needs to be done to make the U.S. tax code fairer?

Do you think Obamacare should be augmented or replaced? How would you change it? What would you replace it with?

Have you ever been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony? If so, please explain.

Have you ever filed for personal bankruptcy? If so, please explain.

What specifically would you do to help colleges control the cost of tuition?

The U.S., and Michigan specifically, has long been a place of refuge for people displaced by wars and acts of terror. Should it remain so, especially with regard to refugees from Iraq, Syria and the Middle East?

Would you support a Constitutional amendment repealing Citizens United?

If an American auto company wants to open a plant in another country in order to reduce costs and increase its competitiveness worldwide, should it be able to do so? Should it have to pay additional taxes or fees for work performed overseas?

Where should the U.S. concentrate its job creation efforts?

Should the U.S. Senate confirm a Supreme Court Justice before a new president takes office? If not, why not?

What is the role of Congress when its majority sits in political opposition to the president?

Has the relationship between Congress and the president lost the respect it ought to have during the last two terms? If so, how would you restore it?

How effective has the Republican majority in the House been in exercising the House’s constitutional role in the federal government?

Do you believe income inequality is a problem in America? If so, what would you do about it?

Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Racial inequality continues to be a serious problem in America.

If you agree, what would you do about it? If you disagree, explain why.

Do you support a moratorium on the deportation of undocumented immigrants whose children were born in the United States?

Do you favor the deportation of all undocumented immigrants?

Do you support legislation to reform the decennial redistricting process by placing it in the hands of in the hands of a non-partisan agency?

How would you reduce the number of firearm-related injuries and deaths in the U.S.?

As more boomers enter retirement, the nation faces critical shortages in eldercare services and rapidly rising levels of poverty among older Americans. What should Congress do about it?

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City of residence Charlevoix
Age 71
Family Wife: LuAnne Kozma Step-son: Gregory Kozma Step-daughter: Natalie Kozma
Education A.B., Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine, math, 1966. J.D. Wayne State University, 1972.
Vehicles owned 2005 Subaru Impreza, 1950 Willys Jeepster.
Professional Experience Law firm associate, 1973-74. Solo practice, Detroit 1974-2000, Charlevoix 2000-present
Political Experience Ran for county-wide and statewide positions three times, then Congress three times previously.
Race/ethnicity White.
Campaign Website http://ellisboal.org
Twitter http://--
YouTube http://--
Incumbent? false
Yes.
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Within weeks of the late April 2014 change to Flint River water, residents began complaining about the water quality, The state-appointed emergency manager and state departments of health and environmental quality ignored the complaints for months.
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Internal memos show EPA officials knew of the crisis in February 2015, but sat on its hands sounding no alarms until December 2015.
There are problems of aging and seriously neglected water infrastructure in cities nationwide. Lead water pipes have been banned for 30 years, but millions of older ones remain, ready to leach lead into tap water during simple repairs or changes in water chemistry. Efforts to address regulatory shortcomings encounter push-back from industry. EPA budgets for water quality have declined, with serious implications for public health. Congress needs to step up.
Congress should reject TPP. It means corporations would control trade, not democratic societies and their governments. TPP is foremost about investment and capital transfer; trade provisions are secondary. Most of its 29 chapters are about expanding corporate power to roll over labor and the environment, claim copyright protection for pharmaceutical drugs, and allow suits by foreign corporations for treaty violations. US natural gas export terminals would get automatic approval of permits for gas going to TPP countries, increasing economic pressure to frack more in the US. Part of US motivation is to maintain imperial power and curtail the rising political and military reach of China.
1. Remove the cap on Social Security FICA tax on earned income, making it a flat non-regressive tax.

2. Enact a financial transactions tax whenever a stock or bond is traded, enhancing revenue and cutting down on Wall Street speculation.

3. Eliminate the preferential rate at which long term capital gains are taxed compared to ordinary income.

See http://ellisboal.org/pages/socialSecurity.shtml .
Replace ACA with a single-payer health care system like HR 676 where the government would pay the costs. It would be paid for through taxes which would replace insurance premiums, and by savings realized through the provision of preventive universal healthcare and elimination of insurance company overhead and hospital billing costs. It would improve patient health, and restore free choice of physicians and other clinicians. No one would be uninsured. It would yield savings of $350 billion/year, which could be used for patient care. It would also have the financial muscle to negotiate with drug and medical suppliers for lower prices.

See http://ellisboal.org//pages/healthCare.shtml .
Yes. Disorderly conduct during the protests and police riot of the Chicago Democratic National Convention in 1968. I was one of 13 who went to trial for refusing a police order to disperse a march of 3000 led by comedian/activist Dick Gregory from downtown toward the convention. The peaceful crowd had come two miles when the order was given. An hour later arrests started. In all, 90 or 100 were arrested. Police gassed everyone else. We had a six-week bench trial. Conviction was affirmed by the Illinois supreme court. The US supreme court denied review, but a dissenting justice would have granted review and reversed.

See http://ellisboal.org/pages/personal.shtml#chicago68 .
No.
Federal policy should act to provide equal access. Free college tuition to all qualified students at public universities and vocational schools. Forgive student and parent loans taken out to finance post-secondary and vocational education. End privatization. Recognize unions and pay school employees more. Prohibit advertising to students in schools.
Yes. The violence in Syria has caused millions to flee their homes, with some 5 million people leaving the country since the civil war began in 2011. Approximately 10,000 of these are coming to the US, among which Michigan (the top state) will welcome 1,036.. Meanwhile, the US should get out of Iraq and Syria.

See http://ellisboal.org/pages/syriaIraqIsis.shtml .
Yes.
The best and only protection for auto workers facing an offshore threat is the old labor slogan: a strong UAW, organizing and negotiating in common with the labor movement in the receiving country to take wages out of competition.
The three largest fossil fuel subsidies are foreign tax credit, credit for production of non-conventional fuels, and oil-gas exploration/development expensing, which together sum to over $36 billion over a 6-year period, according to a 2009 study by the Environmental Law Institute. The renewable electricity production credit (mainly for wind, solar, geothermal, hydro, and tidal energy) summed to a little over $5 billion.

Reverse those priorities and.create jobs. Deployment of photovoltaics is gaining momentum on a worldwide scale, particularly North America. Solar PV is now increasingly competing with conventional energy sources as grid parity has already been reached in 30 countries.
Yes.
The role of Congress should be the same in either situation.
The relationship between Congress and the president has long been poor.
I disagree with many or most of the actions taken by President Obama as president. These include justification of presidential power to target Americans for assassination without due process, support of the Affordable Health Care law, increasing military activity around the world, support of TPP, his choice of a supreme court justice, and a weak response to the threat of global warming. Even so, despite impulsive Republican opposition in many instances, in most cases it has not stopped him..
The US consistently exhibits higher rates of income inequality than most developed nations due to the nation's enhanced support of free market capitalism and less progressive spending on social services. The distribution of household incomes has become more unequal during the post-2008 economic recovery as the effects of the recession reversed. In 2016, the economists Peter H. Lindert and Jeffrey G. Williamson contended that inequality is the highest it has been since the nation's founding.

For suggested fixes, see my answer above to the question about tax policy.

See http://ellisboal.org/pages/socialSecurity.shtml#incomeInequality .
Strongly disagree
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Strongly agree
Black Lives Matter is an international activist movement, originating in the African-American community, that campaigns against violence and systemic racism toward black people. BLM regularly organized protests around the deaths of black people in killings by law enforcement officers, and broader issues of racial profiling, police brutality, and racial inequality in the United States criminal justice system. I support BLM.
Yes. in 2014 Hillary Clinton said "Just because your child gets across the border, that doesn’t mean the child gets to stay," she said. "We don’t want to send a message that is contrary to our laws, or we’ll encourage more children to make that dangerous journey," she added.

I could not disagree more. Later she changed her mind.

See http://ellisboal.org/pages/immigration.shtml .
No. Borders should be open. Short-term goals should include: humane treatment without exploitation and abuse while immigrants live here; a path to citizenship for resident undocumented workers and their families; border passes into the US for Canadian and Mexican citizens; easy access to work permits; taking seriously the claims of persons fleeing political, racial, or religious persecution, or hardships created by economic policies of US-based corporations or US military actions; prioritizing family reunification; and assistance in resettlement including to the US of refugees currently stranded in refugee camps around the world.

See http://ellisboal.org/pages/immigration.shtml .
No opinion.
No opinion.
Improve the financial base for Social Security, and enact a single-payer health care system.

See my answers above to the questions about tax policy and health care.
City of residence Gwinn
Mailing Address PO Box 334
Gwinn, MI 49841
Age 67
Family Husband, four children, four grandchildren
Education BA English and Psychology, Western Michigan U MA School Psychology, U of South Florida
Vehicles owned one car
Professional Experience Teacher and entrepreneur
Political Experience none
Race/ethnicity white
Incumbent? false
I support Gary Johnson and Bill Weld. I am delighted to appear with them.
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The delays and coverups of the problem are criminal.
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The delays and coverups by the EPA are equally criminal.
I will work steadfastly to reduce the size and and scope of the federal government, putting more power and responsibility to the states. This is a state matter. In the meantime, we as a people through our government must do what is necessary to help our people when they are in crisis.

I want to see a transparent accounting for the eight-five million dollars the federal government gave Michigan for this crisis.
I support a free market for international trade.

I believe that the surest deterrent to war is international trade.

Free trade creates jobs in the US. It also encourages foreign investment here.
Eliminate the IRS and replace it with a tax system more like the way we collect sales tax. The current system is full of corruption, including the use of audits to punish adversaries. It is extremely expensive to run in tax dollars as well as the person hours required by the people to comply,
Healthcare needs to operate in a transparent free market environment. Insurance companies should be free to operate in a free market.

I recently tried to find out what a series of tests would cost ahead of time after insurance. I couldn't do it.

Medical facilities should compete openly.
No.
No.
The accessibility of low cost loans has made it unnecessary for higher education facilities to be competitive. They are stuck in a bricks and mortar bureaucratatic mode that does not serve the people well.
We should accept as many refugees from terrorism as we can, My grandfather came from Ukraine for that reason. Refugees should be vetted as are other immigrants. They should be treated well while they wait. This is at the core of our value system.
I support a system that allows anyone to give as much money as they want with absolute transparency. Gary Johnson has suggested (only somewhat in jest) that politicians wear a jumpsuit with badges affixed to show our sponsorship like Nascar. The bigger the contribution, the bigger the badge.

Current regulations have the consequence of favoring incumbents.
If we had a system in which corporations paid a consumption tax like the rest of us, they would be less inclined to want to go overseas. They shouldn't have to go overseas to get a better deal.

A consumption tax is easier to make transparent.
We should remove as many layers of encrusted regulations as we can to unleash the remarkable productivity of the American people.

At this moment, a person wanting to sell a quilt online needs a series of licenses (taxes.) The seller should pay sales tax and and go on making quilts.
Had politics not been involved, this would already have been done.
Members of Congress should represent their constituents, not their parties. When the leadership of the parties tells the members of Congress not to give "him" anything, we have gone off the rails. As a libertarian in Congress, I would work with anyone who is honorable for the good of the people, I am neither Democrat or Republican, though I have values in common with both As a fiscal conservative and social liberal, right and left mean nothing to me. Even as one person, I can begin to chip away at the gridlock. The two party system, like stags in the woods, are locked in mortal combat. They cannot fix it, even if they wanted to.
Vote Johnson/Weld.
See above
We seem to have more laws than we have problems Every law has unintended consequence, usually to the detriment of low income people. We need to repeal regulations that are a disincentive for a small business to grow. As a former small business owner, I can say that compliance with regulations takes person hours (dollars) that could have been productive, making way for growth and hiring more people.

Business employees pay taxes. Government employees use taxes.

We hoard laws. It's time to clean h(H)ouse and let in some air.
Strongly disagree
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Strongly agree
End the war on drugs. Restore due process. Prevent civil forfeiture. Return to assuming a person innocent until proven guilty. Make the voting process fair.
I support a process of getting work visas for undocumented workers so that they become taxpayers. I welcome them to get in line with other immigrants who want to become citizens.
No.
If you can you find a non-partisan agency, yes.
End the War on Drugs.
The closer we get to empowering communities rather the the federal government, the less aid will cost. The closer we get to community management, the better we will understand the needs of elders and others in need.

When Social Security runs out of funding, the current eldercare poverty will pale by comparison. Serious work need to be done on revamping the Social Security. The two party system is incapable of civil discourse.. We need several parties to break up the gridlock.

As a person whose Social Security payments will run out before my life ends, I am especially interested in this problem.
City of residence Blue Lake Township
Age 45
Family Wife, Julianna Smoot.
Education BA, Political Science, Arizona State University
Vehicles owned Ford F-150
Professional Experience Program Director, NDI, Iraq. Vice President & Partner, TVV Capital. Chairman, Michigan Democratic Party.
Political Experience Chairman, Michigan Democratic Party
Race/ethnicity Anglo
Campaign Website http://lonjohnson.com
Incumbent? false
Yes.
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Our Governor created a structure of governance that forced the city to switch it's water source for purely financial reasons, then ignored the warning signs of lead poisoning in children's blood. These actions are inexcusable.
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The EPA should have sounded a louder and earlier alarm. That being said, the responsibility for Flint primarily rests upon the local and state level officials.
Yes. And beyond Flint, we must address our nation's infrastructure needs. We have over $2 trillion in delayed infrastructure needs we must address, including the building of a new Soo Lock.
I do not support the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

We live in a global economy, and we must compete. However, this most recent trade deal negotiated in secret, TPP, fails to address currency manipulation and foreign labor standards, which will invariably lead to the further exporting of American manufacturing jobs.

Corporate and political elites have stacked the deck against working families with trade deals that ship our jobs overseas and have destroyed manufacturing, mining, logging and other jobs we've relied on. I'll go to Washington and will vote to roll back unfair trade deals, and end tax breaks for corporations that ship jobs overseas.

Specifically: 1.) end the ability of corporations to use foreign banking entities to avoid taxes; 2.) end tax breaks for oil & gas companies; 3.) end the tax break of "carried interest" of certain investment entities; 4.) hold corporations accountable that purposefully limit employee hours and benefits while expecting their employees to receive public welfare.
I believe Obamacare should be improved upon. Health Care must be continually reformed to deliver better quality, at a lower cost. To do this, we must: 1.) reduce prescription drug costs 20%-30% by allowing Medicare to negotiate with drug companies; 2.) oppose making Medicare into a voucher program which would drive up costs and limit access for our seniors; 3.) simplify administrative and patient paperwork saving billions and time; 4.) protect our local hospitals against closures; 5.) allow people the ability to buy health insurance plans across state lines – increasing competition and reducing costs.
No.
No.
We must view higher education as a public good - and invest accordingly. The long-term benefit to the individual and society justifies greater investments in higher education. I support1 1.) increased aid to public universities; 2) the creation of a pathway to debt-free degrees; 3.) raising Pell Grants to the national average of in-state tuition; 4.) simplifying financial aid forms; and 5.) giving students the ability to refinance loans at lower interest rates and the ability to pay with a percentage of their incomes.
We must make sure refugees arriving from countries with active terrorist organizations are screened to protect our citizens.
Yes. Secret money and special interest money have corrupted our political process, I believe in the power of transparency in government, electoral and political activities. I support: 1.) a Constitutional Amendment that overturns Citizens United and grants Congress and the states the power to regulate campaign finance; 2.) mandating immediate and real-time online financial disclosure requirements for all entities that engage in political activity; 3.) the online ability to register to vote and apply to absentee vote; 4.) no reason absentee voting along with expanded early vote dates & locations; 5.) banning lobbyist contributions during legislative sessions.
For too long, Corporations have pushed trade deals and tax policies that ship our jobs overseas. Job-killing trade deals like NAFTA have hurt Michigan’s manufacturing and shipped Michigan jobs to Mexico, and the ongoing Trans-Pacific Partnership would follow in NAFTA’s footsteps and hurt Michigan’s economy, which is still struggling to recover from the recession. The Congress should promote trade and tax policies to encourage US corporations to retain manufacturing within the United States. Policies such as strengthening of tariffs placed on Chinese steel, making corporations pay back tax breaks they received if they ship jobs overseas, closing foreign revenue tax loopholes, and increasing
We need both long and short-term solutions to create jobs: 1.) protect the promise of Social Security against those who wish to privatize it; 2.) return passenger rail service to the U.P. and Northern Michigan; 3.) bring high-speed internet and mobile phone service to all our communities and schools; 4.) create a fresh water institute to show the world how to use and protect water; 5.) invest in our public education system and lowering the cost of college; 6.) build a new Soo Lock; 7.) oppose unfair trade deals like the TPP; and 8.) create tax reforms that reduce taxes on lower income and middle class families.
Yes. It is the United States Senate’s job to confirm Supreme Court nominees, and they should do the job they were elected to do.
The role of a Member of Congress is to represent their district, and get things done for the American people. If the sitting President advocates for or implements policies that are contrary to the interests of the Member’s district, then they should fight against them – regardless of political party.
Yes. Everyone can agree that Congress is broken, and there has been obstructionism in Congress from both sides of the aisle. I would work on a bi-partisan basis to rebuild our government to be as honest and hard working as the people who pay for it - us. It starts with communication and basic decency.
Obstruction for the purpose of political positioning is not a constitutional role.
Yes. I think the middle class is taxed too much, and we've been balancing the budget on the backs of working families for too long. I'll work to make sure millionaires and big corporations are paying their fair share, so we can reduce taxes on the middle class and seniors while making sure we're investing in schools, creating jobs, and other priorities.
Strongly disagree
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Strongly agree
We must invest in education and job opportunities for everyone.
To fix our current broken immigration system we must comprehensively reform it to keep our country safe, and maintain a system that is essential to our economy. We can do both. To do this, we must: 1.) increase border security and give our border patrol agents expanded enforcement authority; 2.) oppose blanket amnesty – we must not reward illegal behavior; 3.) reduce the delays for legal immigration; 4.) create a guest worker program where there is a demonstrated lack of US workers; and 5.) create a mandatory technology-based tracking procedure to monitor expired visas.
To fix our current broken immigration system we must comprehensively reform it to keep our country safe, and maintain a system that is essential to our economy. We can do both. To do this, we must: 1.) increase border security and give our border patrol agents expanded enforcement authority; 2.) oppose blanket amnesty – we must not reward illegal behavior; 3.) reduce the delays for legal immigration; 4.) create a guest worker program where there is a demonstrated lack of US workers; and 5.) create a mandatory technology-based tracking procedure to monitor expired visas.
Yes.
I am a lifetime outdoorsman and a strong supporter of the Second Amendment. I will never vote to limit the constitutional right of law abiding citizens to own a gun. Current gun laws, if properly enforced and funded, can protect us against criminals and terrorists. I support comprehensive mental health reform to address the threat posed to our communities from the dangerous mentally ill.
We've made a promise to seniors who have worked hard their whole lives that Social Security and Medicare will be there for them in retirement. I'll fight back against Congress trying to cut Social Security and end the Medicare guarantee, and I'll push to fix their finances long term so retirees know they can rely on what they've earned through hard work.

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