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Six Questions for Congressional Candidate Jack Orswell

Patch interviews Jack Orswell, who is running to represent the 27th U.S. Congressional District.

Republican candidate Jack Orswell is vying to represent the newly formed , which includes Monrovia, Altadena, Arcadia, South Pasadena, San Marino, and Glendora.

Orswell, 62, spent 15 years in the FBI before starting his own company in 1990--Monrovia's --that conducts environmental assessments for financial institutions, real estate companies and law firms. He has served as a reserve police officer with the Arcadia Police Department since 1993.

Patch interviewed Orswell via email about his campaign as part of a series of candidate profiles running ahead of the June 5 elections.

1. Since you have never held public office, why are you qualified to represent this district in the U.S. Congress and what do you hope to accomplish?

I believe that my 15 years of government experience in the FBI and 22 years as the owner of a small business uniquely qualifies me to understand the appropriate role and relationship of government in the lives of the American people. I will use my government and private industry experience, leadership skills and solid moral compass to break through the political logjam and get the members of Congress working together for America. The result will be a government that is re-focused on the interests of its citizens, not on those of self-serving politicians.

2. You've said job creation and implementing a fair taxation system are two of your main priorities. How do intend to accomplish these goals?

Congress needs to encourage entrepreneurs and innovators to build upon their dreams through small business loans and by reducing the rules and regulations that make it difficult for businesses to obtain capital. Small businesses create nearly 50% of new jobs in America. We have always been a nation of creativity and self-improvement and it is small business, not big government that will create jobs and get America back to work.

We need a new tax system that is fair to everyone living in America. Rich people, middle-class people, and poor people need to pay their fair share for the freedom and liberty that we all enjoy. One idea is to implement a flat rate sales tax of 2-3% and reduce the income tax rates by 5%, which should produce about the same amount of revenue. Members of the House and the Senate have introduced several bills and other "fair taxation" organizations have similar plans. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) should review these plans to determine if they are fair to all and if they generate sufficient revenue. After a comprehensive review, the CBO should issue a report to Congress with the pros and cons of each proposed program. Congress should then review the report and, after a public debate, select the best program to replace, not modify, our existing tax system. I believe everyone is willing to pay their fair share for freedom. We need to both reduce the cost of government and implement a new tax system that is fair to all.

3. You are a proponent of campaign finance reform, a position that may not sit well with others in your party in Washington. Why is election reform needed and what is the best way to implement it?

I am not seeking office to be like “others” in Washington. I am seeking office to change the way things have been done in the past and to represent the voice of the people. In past elections, it is clear to me that money usually has determined the outcome, significantly reducing or marginalizing the voice of the people. We have to bring back an election system whereby candidates are selected by the people, not the special-interest groups with the most money.

Several bills regarding election reform have been introduced. I will work with the members of Congress who have introduced these bills, find the common ground we need to implement the changes, and get the bill passed that allows the people, not special-interest groups, to elect their representatives.

4. You've argued that the National Health Care System should be abolished. What alternatives do you propose to give health care access to the millions of Americans who remain uninsured?

We need a health care system that provides individuals affordable choices. We have already established free and low-cost health care programs, including Medicaid, which provide services for people who cannot afford health insurance at any price. We need to eliminate the current national health care system requiring participation and create an open, competitive health insurance market. We need to remove the restrictions that prevent insurance companies throughout the United States from competing in California and many other states. With a larger supply of available health insurance companies, we will be able to choose the right health care program for our families at an affordable price.

For those individuals who have pre-existing medical conditions, we need to establish a program similar to the FAIR Plan, which is an association comprised of all insurers authorized to transact basic property insurance in California. Using the FAIR Plan concept, all authorized insurers will be required to provide basic health coverage under the supervision of the California Department of Managed Health Care. I believe private insurance companies will do a better job of managing claims and preventing fraud, making affordable health care available to everyone.

5. What unique needs do you think California's 27th district has? What issues do you intend to focus on at the federal level to impact the lives of your constituents at a local level?

Keeping our families safe is the most important issue not only to California’s 27th District but to everyone in America. National security inside the United States starts with the first responders, the firefighters and police officers in our communities. We need to ensure that federal funds are available for training and communications so that our first responders can work together in a unified manner to detect, prevent and respond to national security threats.

In this difficult economic climate I will work diligently, as described earlier, to remove barriers to economic growth and new job creation. Burdensome regulation by the federal government has a direct, negative impact on small businesses and corporations doing business within the 27th District.
I also believe that an important issue at the local level is transportation. The economy will continue to struggle if people can’t get to work efficiently and if the trucking industry can’t deliver goods. Completing the Gold Line to Ontario airport will greatly reduce traffic on the 210 Freeway and nearby freeways, and allow residents an alternative to driving to the airport.

Finally, having grown up in the San Gabriel Valley as an active Boy Scout and later as a Scout Leader, I have spent much of my time enjoying the trails and campsites of the Angeles National Forest. Working together with the United States Forest Service, I will establish a program that will encourage families to get out and enjoy the beauty and serenity of the nearby recreational areas.

Gem City Dude Man May 30, 2012 at 11:32 PM
The Federation of American Immigration Reform's recent study estimates by the end of the year illegal immigration will cost California tax payers close to $22 Billion dollars. Our current state budget deficit is conservatively estimated at $16 Billion and could go as high as $25 Billion. The Federal Government doesn't even pay 10% of the cost of this huge budget burden created by the illegal immigration problem. Why should Californians have to pay for a problem we did not create, is not our responsibility, and the Feds will not allow us to fix even when we have tried? The Feds are forcing this state into a long term commitment as a Welfare State. When you talk about tax reform the current tax structure where our state tax revenues go to Washington and then the Plutocrats and Oligarchs decide just how much of OUR tax money they think we should get back is wrong, corrupt, and totally unfair. In fact, when you compare what Americans pay in income taxes between Federal and State it should be reversed. The majority of our taxes should stay where we live, work, and play. The Federal Government has overstepped their government responsibilities as outlined by the Constitution. The balance of government power needs to be restored between the Federal, State, and local branches. Too much government power has migrated to Washington where it is too far from the people and away from our control! We are now living through what happens when governments become too centralized.
Branprop May 31, 2012 at 03:52 AM
What happened to Sally Cruz?(comment dated 9:32 AM 05/30/2012)
Kristen Lepore May 31, 2012 at 09:03 PM
@Branprop: I did not delete any comments. Perhaps you saw the comment on the same article but a different Patch site?
Branprop June 01, 2012 at 12:04 AM
Kristen: I was referencing a comment by one Sally Cruz who was giving her version of events surrounding an alleged campaign appearance by Jack Orswell at an unspecified community clinic. The comment was attached to the Six Questions for Congressional Candidate Jack Orswell posting on Arcadia Patch at 9:32 AM on Wednesday the 30th. I did just check Monrovia Patch and no record there either.
Sam Burgess June 01, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Branprop, I noticed the same problem. Apparently, from Patch's enlightened point of view, if a blog post appears on more than one Patch site it is not necessary to post all of the comments on all of the sites. As to who decides what comments appear on what sites well............. Go figure............
Branprop June 01, 2012 at 03:15 AM
Thank you, Sam. I thought I may have been losing it..... and I may well be ..... but I know what I saw.
Kristen Lepore June 01, 2012 at 03:52 AM
@Sam and Branprop: We do not filter comments from site to site. It's a glitch in our system. I advise you to post your comment to a site again if it is not showing. Please email me with any questions or concerns: kristen.lepore@patch.com. Thanks!
Danielle Corona June 01, 2012 at 06:50 AM
I wish Candidate Orswell and others would stop perpetuating the myth that there are options out there for people who cannot afford health insurance. If you fall into that lower pocket of middle class, there is not help on any side. Insurance is too expensive, and you are locked out of medicaid due to your income being too high. Conservatives really need to find an alternative to saying "the options are there", because they just aren't. Sincerely, a lower income middle class voter & taxpayer.
Natalie Ragus June 01, 2012 at 12:03 PM
Danielle, I 100% agree with you! There aren't any options for lower-middle class people who aren't insured. I'm also tired of hearing insinuations that people who don't have health insurance are somehow lazy or irresponsible because they choose not to buy health insurance. 1) Many are single and self-employed or work for small businesses that don't provide insurance 2) If you have anything other than picture-perfect health (read: The only time you ever need to see a doctor is once a year for a routine physical and a flu shot) premiums for individual plans are breathtakingly high. And that's not including deductibles or having to pick up 10%-20% of the tab when you seek medical treatment 3) Healthy women are frequently charged more for healthcare plans, even when their policies don't include coverage for maternity care.
Mike Farrell June 05, 2012 at 05:08 PM
I have known Jack for the past 30 years as friend and co-worker on several Boy Scout projects. He is a person of integry, honesty, and a person I can trust to be a good steward of our Country. I am voting for him because I beleve he will do the best job for us! let's bring the power back to the states and show D.C. who is really in charge.
J. D. June 05, 2012 at 07:58 PM
About the comments on there being no health insurance options for many lower-middle class people, I feel the need to add another point: There is one group of citizens that as of now can be excluded from Medicaid entirely, even without a single penny to his/her name: childless adults.

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