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NAME: Jeff Lewis
CANDIDATE FOR: U.S. House of Representatives District 3
COUNTY OF RESIDENCE: Cabell
BIOGRAPHY: I worked for Verizon Communications for nearly 20 years. Also, I served as President CWA Local 2003 starting in 2000. I remained in my position as President until my departure from Verizon. I returned to school after Verizon obtaining my BA from Marshall in 2014 and my law degree from Florida Coastal School of Law in 2017. Website: JeffLewisforCongress.com
Questions from the West Virginia League of Women Voters:
1. What suggestions do you have for improving bipartisanship and cooperation in Congress?
We must start putting people over party in politics. There is zero chance of getting everything either side wants. That’s why I know from working with management to get issues accomplished at Verizon that the same approach must be done in Congress by giving on each side as much as possible where a solution can be reached in the middle.
2. What new measures would you support to help middle class families deal with the rising costs of health care, housing, and higher education?
I would primarily propose that a family of four making less than $40,000 a year would be tax-exempt. I also would make it easier for the middle class to obtain housing subsidies, guaranteed federal loans for home ownership, and free college education as long as the student did a certain number of community service hours while in school.
3. What should be the role of Congress in addressing the challenges of climate change?
First, the limits on carbon emissions that had been put in place on auto makers and then rescinded, must be fully restored. Also, carbon capture technology must be used in all industries where its economically feasible. The funding for the study of climate change must be restored back to levels on par with other industrialized nations.
Additional questions from The Herald-Dispatch:
4. What steps, if any, would you propose to prolong the solvency of the Social Security and Medicaid trust funds?
The most logical solution to the issue of maintaining the solvency of Social Security and Medicaid is removing the yearly cap. Most people don’t realize that millionaires pay out their Social Security in their very first paycheck of the year. If it was removed so everyone paid the same percentage each year, Social Securuty and Medicare would be solvent forever.
5. The national debt keeps rising. Do you think that’s acceptable, and if not, what action should be taken to bring it down?
I believe that we must pass a Balanced Budget Amendment, that only in a national emergency such as we are in now may money be spent that we don’t bring in current revenue to cover. If we don’t cut out wasteful spending and do this, we are mortgaging our children and our grandchildren’s future.
6. Do you think term limits should be placed on those serving in Congress?
Yes, I believe that no member of Congress should be allowed to serve more than two consecutive terms in office. This is only four total years in the House and twelve years in the Senate so that a person can get a more balanced view of those representing our state. A person could run again in a nonconsecutive term.
7. How would you improve the state’s access to broadband internet?
I provided broadband to customers for years working for Verizon. In order to improve broadband internet, we must expand the state’s ability to access fiber optic networks. There should be a state fund to help cover these high costs especially to our rural residents. Currently, it’s not financially feasible for companies to offer fiber to rural counties.