Interviews

Mike Fallon, Republican candidate in District 1, takes on Diana DeGette, seeks cure for Congress

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WW: As a former small business owner, what do you think can be done to jump-start the labor market in Colorado?

MF: The United States has become unfriendly to business. We have increased regulations, we have an increased tax burden as a way to supply this ravenous spending binge, and businesses are afraid to hire because they don't know what the regulations will be like next year. They don't know what their health-care costs will be next year. What businesses need is some certainty. Let's do away with all the games where we pick winners and losers, where we give a tax incentive to one business by taking it from another, where we punish one business with a regulation but we favor another business with grants. Let's do away with the games that deem who the winning company is and who the losing company is. Why are we bailing out failed companies? Let them fail. Let's encourage the good companies who play by the rules. If we become more business-friendly, then jobs will pour back into the country.

WW: There are three amendments on the Colorado ballot this year that might look appealing to taxpayers. Amendment 60 will decrease your property taxes, Amendment 61 will put restrictions on government borrowing, and Proposition 101 will reduce state taxes and fees. But these will also result in massive cuts to services and education. What do you think about these ballot amendments?

MF: As an individual taxpayer, they all sound good. As someone who is realistic and realizes that we have to balance budgets, I think that it's dangerous to micro-manage state government with amendments. Instead of having all of these amendments designed to make the government behave, let's just have a government that behaves on its own. We need responsible people at the state level that can make these hard decisions and not play games with the taxpayers. We need people who will make the difficult decisions about how to balance our budget. On the surface these amendments are exactly like you said -- they look appealing to the taxpayer. But it would make it very difficult for the state to meet its budgetary requirements. The Republicans probably don't like me saying those things, but I'm a realist. Let's make it so that we don't have to restrain the government through external means like amendments.

WW: Would you consider yourself a social conservative? If so, do you think those values are in alignment with your potential constituents?

MF: I am a social conservative. I think Denver is probably more liberal than I am; its voting history would suggest that. But from a government standpoint, I'm more of a social libertarian. My socially conservative principles will not dictate the way I legislate. I'm a strict constitutionalist, and nowhere in the Constitution does it say that we should be legislating morality on social issues. These are state and court issues, not congressional issues. So even though I'm personally a social conservative, that is not the way I will legislate.

WW: Is there anything else you want to get out there?

MF: I know some of these things don't play well with the Republican party, and they obviously don't play well with the hard left. But I'm a common-sense guy who has a lot of practical experience, and I think that we should run government how we run our homes and our businesses. That's why I'm doing this, and I think the people of Denver will be open to it right now.

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Jonathan Easley
Contact: Jonathan Easley