Monday, April 14, 2008

Call to Convention for County Delegates

Call to Convention
Utah County Republican Party

Saturday ∙ April 26, 2008
Orem High School
175 South 400 East
Orem, UT

Delegate Credentials -- begins 6:30 a.m.
Central Committee Meeting -- 7:30 a.m.
Senate District Caucuses -- 8:00 a.m. Sharp
House District Caucuses -- 8:45 a.m.
General Session -- 9:30 a.m.

Credentialing will end at 9:45 a.m. Please bring photo ID for check in. In order to vote in House and Senate races, you must attend the caucus meeting for your House or Senate District.

See you at Convention!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Meet with Opponents: Brad Daw & Linda Houskeeper

BOTH Linda Houskeeper and Brad Daw agreed upon a meeting this coming Wednesday at 6:30pm. Kip Meacham has proposed and both have accepted the following format:

Date: Wednesday, 4/16/08
Time: 6:30pm - 8:00pm
Place: Tahitian Noni Auditorium (Place could change, check back here for latest details.)
Moderator: Either Kip Meacham (Orem 27 Precinct Chair) or Ivan Keller (Legislative District 60 Chair)


1. Coin toss - winner chooses to go first with opening statement or closing statement

2. Candidate 1 introduction (10-15 minutes)

3. Candidate 2 introduction (10-15 minutes)

4. Questions from the attendees directed to individual candidates or to both--giving both candidates an opportunity to respond or comment on the questions (55 minutes)

5. Candidate 2 conclusion (2 minutes)

6. Candidate 1 conclusion (2 minutes)

Email Kip Meacham with questions for candidates.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Delegate Meeting with House Representative Brad Daw

Not a lot of delegates showed up last night, which was a shame. But for those of us who did we were able to really question Brad about what he's done as our Representative as well as what he intends to do in the future. These are the issues effecting District 60 and what Brad has done, in his own words:

Accountability and Transparency in Government

Transparency and accountability for government officials has been an issue since the divinely inspired creation of our nation's constitution. To better bring this transparency to light, in the General Session of 2008 Representative Daw sponsored and passed HB 29.

HB 29 Election Law: Financial Reporting brings a greater transparency in Government, including at the local level, leaving a greater accountability of our elected officials to the people they represent.


As our community continues to grow, the needs for proper transportation planning become increasingly important. To address the needs of our district Representative Daw helped in the moving forward needed reconstruction on I-15 in Utah County. He also serves as the Vice-Chair of the House Transportation Committee and has had great influence over the planning for how to best move forward to meet the community and state's transportation needs.

Those in attendance last night asked Brad to be certain that the sections of I-15 laid in Utah County are of high quality and durability. We expressed, vehemently, that we do not want to pay for the same stretch of freeway five times over because the job wasn't done right the first time. He agreed.

We also asked that there be efficient oversight of the contractors so that the debacle which occurred in Salt Lake City with their freeway redo does not happen in Utah County. He also agreed with that.

Illegal Immigration

Of all the talk on how to deal with the issue of illegal immigration recently, only two pieces of legislation passed in the 2008 General Session; SB 81, loosely based on how Arizona is handling their illegal immigrants, which Representative Daw voted for, and HB 171 which Representative Daw sponsored.

HB 171 Driving Privilege Card Amendment restricts the use of the Drivers' privilege card to its original intentions. It clarifies the card may not be used as a form of identification for voting or any other government function. As well, it restricts its use as a form of identification acceptable for the purchase of alcohol, tobacco or firearms.

I'll admit, I have problems with HB 171, but Brad made an excellent point last night. He wrote this bill to protect Utahns from uninsured illegal aliens. He said that 75% of illegal aliens with Driving Privilege Cards have automobile insurance. This is a good thing, certainly.

But let me point out the obvious here! If we know that 75% of illegal aliens have Driving Privilege Cards and insurance . . . why are they still here?

Prescription Drug Addiction

This issue has become a plague of epidemic proportion in our community, with hundreds of deaths annually, other lives ruined, and the devastation of the families of those addicted to pain medication as a result. Representative Daw has taken the lead in combating this devastating erosion of our community. He sponsored and passed HB 137 and HB 119.

HB 137 Pain Medication Management and Education (passed in the 2007 General Session and received continued funding in the 2008 General Session) provided funding for the Health Department to implement a campaign to properly educate the population on prescription drug addiction and its dangers.

HB 119 Controlled Substance Database (passed in the 2008 General Session) provides Physicians, Pharmacies and Public Safety with a real-time database of the prescriptions for controlled substances, halting the ability of an addict or distributor to duplicate a prescription or receive multiple prescriptions of controlled substances unbeknown to the prescribing physician. This tool will help Utah to lead the nation in combating prescription drug addiction, and more importantly save lives.

I know this to be a viciously pervasive problem in Utah. We experienced it personally with a neighbor across the street (who no longer lives there). She was addicted to painkillers and would do anything, including break into your home or con you into picking up her "prescription," anything to get her hands on those painkillers. She was in and out of rehab and finally arrested when her prescription fraud was finally noticed. Brad's bills to combat this are a good thing.

Internet Pornography

Pornography is an insidious problem in our community. While pornography has been a problem for many years, the internet has made it far more widespread and allowed it to claim far more victims than it would have otherwise.

HCR 3 Resolution Urging Congress to Stop Internet Pornography to Children and Employees. This resolution affirmed the legislature's ongoing commitment to keeping pornography away from children and those who do not wish to see it. Since the passage of the resolution, Representative Daw has been working with government and civic leaders to find ways to accomplish this.

I questioned Brad on this thoroughly. He talked about a sweet wi-fi spot at Pioneer Park in Salt Lake City. From that point, you can apparently access multiple wireless connection and cruise whatever sites you want. His point is to have everyone with a wireless network lock it down with a security key, given only to those who should have access, in order to prevent children from access pornographic sites.

Economic Growth

Utah has a wonderful and dynamic higher education system that produces world class research and development in many areas. Bringing university research together with the business community is a great way to create good jobs right here in the state.

HB125 Centers of Excellence Amendments. This bill cleared the way to bring market savvy entrepreneurs together with university research and create new business opportunities in the state.

Brad has a watchful eye on our community and its economic growth.

Brad also talked about working with health care, vouchers and a few other things.

I have linked every single one of Brad's bills, so please read through them so that you are able to see what he has accomplished in office. I am emailing Brad and Linda Houskeeper, his opponent, a list of questions. I will ask for further information on health care and vouchers, as well as any other issues Brad feels are important. Brad has already committed to answer them and allowing me to put them on this blog. It is my hope Linda will do the same. I anticipate having those interviews in place some time next week.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Meet with Brad Daw Tonight

County Delegates: This is your chance to meet with Representative Brad Daw, the incumbent in the District 60 race for the House seat.

Tahitian Noni Conference Room
(Follow the signs)
333 River Park Dr
Provo, UT 84604

6:30 p.m. to 7:45 p.m.

Bring your questions and concerns.

We are also arranging a meeting with Linda Houskeeper, his opponent. She refused to come at the same time as Brad, so we're shooting for a separate meeting.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Jason Chaffetz Views on Illegal Immigration

This is what I know of Jason, he played football at BYU. That's all I know, but here is his Illegal Immigration plan:
Becoming a citizen of the United States of America is earned and means something special. We are the envy of the world and it is no wonder why. We are the nation that empowers the individual with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We are also a nation of laws, guided by a Constitution, to ensure those rights.

The Constitution gives Congress the responsibility “to establish a uniform rule of naturalization.” We have a duty and responsibility to the legal citizens to set the terms of entry and exit. Currently, we are being unfairly asked to subsidize and tolerate a mass of illegal people flooding our country. This is a failure of Congress and an unprecedented unfunded mandate upon the states.

An Immoral Position: The status-quo is in many ways immoral. Current government policy, including the lack of political will to enforce the existing laws, unfairly exploits people who were enticed, encouraged, and incentivized to come to the United States of America illegally. As a country, we have given millions of illegal aliens access to jobs and taxpayer-supported entitlements including health care and education. It is morally wrong to tacitly approve breaking our laws. This must be fixed.

Most illegal aliens are good, hard working, decent people who have made a significant contribution to our country and our economy, but it often comes at an incalculable expense of other resources and jobs. We can accept that people are often simply trying to improve their lives for themselves and their families, but we should reject exploitation and return to the rule of law.

What To Do: Our first priority should be to legal citizens, and then we should prioritize those who want to come here legally. Our current system is failing by giving those with closest proximity and a willingness to break our laws favor over those who are willing to enter the country legally.

It is time to do right. Everyone will benefit. It is for this reason we must elect political leaders willing to solve this difficult issue.

As your Congressman, I will vote based on these principles:


~ Jason Chaffetz

Fix illegal immigration: There are millions of people from around the world who seek to legally become a citizen of the United States of America. Unfortunately, the system is failing. Last year the Wall Street Journal stated the current green-card backlog includes applicants who face a 22-year wait time. This doesn’t work for anybody. We need to implement the leadership necessary to fix this problem and appropriate the money needed to thoroughly process applicants in a timely manner. Until legal immigration works, we will continue to have major problems.

Reject Amnesty: Restitution is something most of us learned by third grade. If you take a candy bar that is not yours, you need to give it back. Take money that is not yours, you need to return it. Cut in line, you go to the back of the line. I still believe what I learned in third grade.

I will not support or vote for amnesty in any way, shape or form. If you are here illegally, there is no pathway to citizenship except to apply from your country of origin.

Lock down border, enforce visas: Our porous borders open the way for illegal entry, drug trafficking and terrorism. We must appropriate the funding for physical barriers and technology to lock down the border. By some estimates, 40% of the people coming to the United States on a non-immigrant visa fail to depart as directed. This is unacceptable. Further, we should not issue visas, including student visas, for those coming from terrorist nations.

Have the Political will to enforce the current laws: The existing laws are not being enforced. As your Congressman, I will insist the law is enforced.

* Homeland Security believes we have 623,292 “fugitive aliens” who did not obey orders to leave the country. --Cases as of Aug. 2006, AP, March 27, 2007

*The Homeland Security Department Inspector General said, “Backlog fugitive alien cases have increased each fiscal year since program was started in Feb 2002” because of too little bed space, poor staffing and an inaccurate database.

As your Congressman, I will fight to solve these problems.

We need to expand federal prisons for those non-American citizens breaking the laws of the USA. Like the Western Governor’s Association, I, too, encourage the construction of western regional federal prisons to house criminal aliens who have been apprehended and convicted in state criminal justice systems. The federal government failed to carry out its constitutional responsibility to protect the borders and the resulting financial burden of detaining these criminals should not fall on the shoulders of the states.

Get ride of rewards and incentives to be here illegally: We exacerbate the situation by offering rewards and incentives, such as free health care, free education and driver’s licenses to those here illegally. Eliminate these incentives and we will help solve the problem.

* Illegal aliens should not get preferential treatment over United States citizens.

* Illegal immigration should be a felony aggravating factor.

* “According to 2006 audit by the Social Security inspector general, 17 of the 100 worst employers using employees with non-work numbers were government agencies. That means the government knows who those employees are, but usually does not go after them.” Deseret Morning News, 8/26/07. This is unacceptable.

* Birth in the USA should not automatically make you a citizen. I support legislation and/or a constitutional amendment eliminating the automatic granting of citizenship to those born in the United States of America. At least one parent should be a legal citizen to trigger birthright citizenship.

Give business the tools and align financial incentives: Most businesses operate legally and want to do the right thing. But for those that do not, we must impose stiffer fines and criminal penalties.

Once it has improved, employers should be required to validate social security numbers and employee names with E-Verify. Coupled with tough enforcement, this will help improve the current situation. Employers who knowingly hire illegals should be punished. They are breaking the laws of the nation.

For those entering our country on a non-immigrant visa (NIV), we should explore aligning financial incentives through employers and educational institutions to ensure timely departures. Financial bonding as an incentive to depart the country as planned will help motivate those tempted to stay beyond what was originally agreed upon. This must be backed up with severe economic penalties.

After the 9/11 terrorist attack, the FBI sought to interview 4,112 people in the United States on NIVs. Over half of those people could not be located because they no longer resided at the address they had registered with the government. If you are here on a NIV, you must be registered. If not, you should be considered in violation of the law with severe penalties, possible incarceration and deportation.

Insist on Assimilation: By becoming a citizen of the United States of America, you are pledging allegiance to our country and our flag. In essence, you are abandoning your previous allegiances in favor of your commitment to the U.S.A. We celebrate diversity and vast fabric of culture in this country, but we are bound together in our loyalty to the goodness of the United States of America.

* English should be the official language of the United States of America. Taxpayers should not pay additional money for translation and printing in other languages.

* Proof of citizenship to vote.

What should we do with those currently here illegally?

For those here illegally, the ONLY pathway to U.S. citizenship is to go home to their country of origin and apply from there. Period.

We must have the political will, including funding, to enforce the law. No amnesty.

In addition to the natural attrition that will occur as we implement the previously mentioned policies, we need a pathway to deportation. To facilitate this pathway to deportation, we should allow current illegal aliens to come forward and apply for a short term work visa if done in conjunction with a sponsoring legal business. The visa will be for a specified time. At the conclusion of the visa, the illegal alien must return to their country of origin, or face serious criminal consequences.

This should be a limited time offer and any adult person identified without this application in process should be detained and deported. This will allow us to identify illegal aliens and uniformly return illegal aliens to their country of origin while allowing a legal workforce, with proper documentation and background checks, to enter the country in a uniform fashion.

Consider this:

Roughly 10% of Mexico’s 107 million population now lives in the USA.

15% of the labor force is in the USA.

One in every seven Mexican workers comes to the USA.

¾ of the illegal aliens come from Mexico and Central America.

--San Francisco Chronicle, 5/21/06
* * *

Jason's big push is "if you want more status quo, vote Chris Cannon." In all honesty, Chris has been incredibly responsive to his constituents. Over the years, as I have contacted his office on a number of issues he has always responded. It didn't matter if it was over water rights (when Bill Clinton signed all of America's waters over to the U.N. Utah and Idaho were the only ones who kept their rights), immigration (and yes, we've gone the rounds on that), lands (Clinton again), business, national security, border patrol, energy independence . . . it simply didn't matter. He always responded by either mail, email or phone call. He listened to me and his other constituents and if the overwhelming number of us wanted a change in policy, he did it.

Point in case: Chris supported "No Child Left Behind." Hey, it was a nice idea but anytime you allow the federal government into any portion of your life chaos will reign, and it did. Chris recognized that and is the main push behind So, don't be so quick to call Chris "status quo." Call him, talk to him and listen, really listen. But don't spout the standard expecting it to fly with those of us who have done our homework.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

David Leavitt's Stance on Illegal Immigration

I have two major problems with David Leavitt. His people called me several weeks in a row, as if they were approaching me for the first time, and asked me the same questions over and over. Shows a startling lack of efficiency and carelessness with budget. Then I found he was Mike Leavitt's brother. Yes, that's a problem for me too.

Putting those things aside, I have fairly considered the candidates and would like you to do the same:
Securing Our Borders: It is time to enforce current security measures which allow only persons with proper documentation into the United States. We welcome the tired, the poor, and the yearning masses who want to speak English, contribute to the economy, foster patriotism, and become citizens and who cross the borders legally. Government's laid back attitude toward border control has seriously burdened cities and states with a high population of illegal immigrants and opened our nation to terrorist attacks. Schools are crowded with students who do not speak fluent English. Hospitals are closing because care for uninsured immigrants is depleting their already strained budgets. For the protection of America, we must block anyone who has the potential to introduce a security or economic threat to our country.

Because government at a local level is more effective than at a federal level, states should have the authority to maintain and enforce border security. I will support appropriate legislation and funding as an incentive for border states to hire and train additional border patrol and customs agents, making sure they enforce laws already in place including tracking those with a visitor's visa whose time in the country is limited. This does not replace the federal government's responsibility to secure our borders. Government has the technology and the tools to do a better job. It is critical that we improve the present infrastructure to include updated border surveillance technology. The use of security cameras, unmanned aerial vehicles, ground-based radar towers, and fencing, where feasible, will send the message that we mean business.

Providing Economic Prosperity: We recognize the economic need for legal migrant labor. Congress can begin to address this problem by implementing a worker-visa program which will provide a transition period where those who are here illegally can voluntarily leave the country and apply for a temporary work visa. This program will not guarantee citizenship. Those who wish to gain citizenship must continue to go through the already established process. It is necessary to adhere to justice while remembering that America is a humane nation. Employers will be responsible to hire legal workers and will be held accountable for circumventing laws. Businesses who hire illegal immigrants should be heavily fined and put on strict probation. We can sustain our labor force without disruption by providing a positive alternative amnesty.

Preserving the Rule of Law:
We must preserve our legal system or we will lose the principles upon which America was founded. The United States has always been a land of hope and opportunity for legal immigrants. They infuse the country with new life and invigorate the economy. However, amnesty for illegal immigrants is not an option. It erodes the rule of law and does not work. Countries that have chosen amnesty as a solution have done so repeatedly without solving the problem of illegal immigration.

We cannot create legality out of illegality. We cannot maintain the law if we simply pardon illegal immigrants in this country. Neither can we succeed as a union of states if members of that union do not uphold the laws passed by the national government. State and local governments not willing to uphold the law of the land and enforce immigration statutes should not receive federal appropriations. Illegal immigrants must return to the border if they wish to apply for the guest worker program. If they have a full-time job, no criminal record, and present documentation such as a card stamped by the local post office or other notarized evidence that they have been living in the country, they could be admitted as temporary guest-workers. However, such status would not be a path to citizenship.

These steps may not be quick, easy, or popular, but by exerting the political will to implement them, we can strengthen our borders, our economy, and our country. We will never know what might not have happened on September 11, 2001, if tight border controls and mandated follow-up on foreign visitors had been in force. We can learn from this tragedy and make provisions to protect our future. It is time to play by the rules, to do the hard thing, and to develop, implement, and fund a system that will safeguard our borders, strengthen our economy, and enforce the law.

Tomorrow, I'll post Jason Chaffetz views on Illegal Immigration. In the meantime, it would behoove all voters to ask David how he hopes to accomplish this.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Chris Cannon's Stance on Illegal Immigration

I've had a few people express concern about Chris's stance on immigration. He does favor a Worker ID program, but I popped over to his website and pulled the information straight from him.
Indeed, the time for action has come. Today, there may be as many as 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States. For the most part, we have no real way to know with any certainty who they are, where they are, or what they are doing. What we do know is that the majority of these folks are in fact living in our communities, sending their kids to our schools and, yes, working in jobs that are absolutely essential to our local, state and national economies. But, since they entered the country illegally, they cannot let us know who they are, they cannot obtain reliable identification and they live in the shadows of our society. In our post 9-11 environment, it is simply not acceptable to have that many people living and working in those shadows.

There are some who maintain that the solution to illegal immigration is simple: We should just round all these folks up and send them home, wherever that might be.

And in the context of an election year, that approach might have some appeal, however, [it] is not a real solution. Our immigration bureaucracy today cannot even efficiently manage the flow of legal immigrants and guests-- much less find and deport 12 million illegal immigrants. Perhaps more importantly, it is not entirely clear that our economy could withstand the loss of what has become an essential part of our national workforce. As the Deseret News and many others have said, we need plausible solutions to the challenge of illegal immigration not simplistic rhetoric.

As a member of the House Judiciary Committee, I have been deeply involved for several years in trying to achieve reasonable and practical solutions to this vexing issue. My efforts with regard to immigration policy have been, and continue to be, driven by a few very basic principles:

Secure Borders Protecting the Homeland: There is nothing more fundamental to national security than control of our borders -- knowing who is coming in and preventing entry by those who would do us harm. We can and must do a better, and smarter, job of meeting this most basic responsibility. Of course, a key requirement for secure borders is to have rational immigration laws and policies which allow us to focus our security expertise, state-of-the-art technology and resources on real threats.

Economic Security: The fact that we have millions of illegal aliens in the United States today is the result of some basic realities: Existing and past immigration policies that have not worked; a failure to adequately control our borders; and the law of supply and demand. America is still the Land of Opportunity, and it is opportunity that is driving the majority of illegal immigrants to go to extraordinary lengths to enter our country and fill jobs in vital sectors of our economy--including many right here in Utah. We need immigration policies that will allow those willing workers to meet the needs of willing employers and do so in such a way that does not endanger the jobs of American workers.

Fairness to Legal Immigrants: The term amnesty is tossed about in debates over immigration policy, and with good reason. Millions of hard working, tax-paying legal immigrants are today living in America and making tremendous contributions to society. In many instances, those immigrants endured years of patiently waiting and complying with the complicated process of legal entry. It is essential that any legislation or initiative to allow illegal immigrants who are already in the U.S. to gain some form of temporary status be equitable to those who are here legally. The key to that equity lies in placing strict work requirements, monetary penalties, or other reasonable burdens on those who wish to stay here and work here despite having entered illegally. I will only support legislation which encompasses such penalties and mandates a fair price of admission for all.

Reality-Based Immigration Laws: Americans, and particularly we Utahns, are fundamentally welcoming people. We understand that reasonable and robust levels of immigration are critical to the continued growth and well-being of our economy, our communities, and our entire nation. It is a simple fact that we would not today have millions of illegal immigrants if our immigration laws and policies were based upon reality. We must have a system which allows willing workers to come here legally if there are jobs to fill. Likewise, we cannot just ignore the fact that those millions of illegal immigrants are, in fact, here, using our health care facilities, sending their kids to our schools, and in most cases, paying taxes to our federal, state and local governments.

In short, our immigration laws and policies must reflect the realities we face today: Our economy demands a robust supply of willing workers; our security demands that we bring people who are here illegally out of the shadows and into the light of day; and common sense demands that we find realistic solutions to a system that is clearly not working. ~ Chris Cannon
I have spoken with Chris, in length, on this issue. Yes, I'd like to see every single illegal immigrant rounded up and deported. I'd like to see our borders completely secured. Barring the first, I'll unhappily recognize that rounding them all up might not work. Although I'd sure like it to.

My second desire is slowly being taken care of. Chris said he drove, he believes, 400 miles of border fence. Some of it he says is inadequate, some of it is good. He is working hard to get the fence up and secure.

On the first, Chris says there is no way to round up 12 to 15 million people and deport them. We don't have the budget or manpower for that. He stated that we have to come up with the alternative. He favors, as I said, the Worker ID program which will allow them to work here but not allow them to access our health care and welfare programs. Barring shipping them all out, which is still my favorite option, Chris' plan works for me.

Tomorrow I'll post David Leavitt's stance on immigration.