1. As you no doubt know, the Bush Administration led this country into an illegal and costly invasion and occupation of Iraq with no real end date in sight. In addition to the almost 2300 American lives lost in that country, some $400 BILLION has been spent to perpetuate that debacle. This is money that might have been put to better use in actually defending our ports and borders, providing emergency assistance to our own citizens during one of the worst natural disasters in our history, or any number of social programs that are now seeing the axe of the Bush budget cutters. My question is this:
What is your message to the Democratic voters of this state when it comes to ending the occupation of Iraq and restoring a proper balance to the Federal budget between military and social spending?
2. When George W Bush was awarded the Whitehouse by Supreme Court judgment, the Federal budget was headed down an historic path toward significant surpluses that would have been very useful during a time of increased militarism and intervention. Instead, Bush submitted and Congress approved two massive tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. The effect of these tax cuts has been to plunge our country into the largest deficits in our history. My question:
What is your message to the Democratic voters in this state when it comes to tax cuts during increased military activity? Do you believe that the wealthy, who are much less likely to perform military service or take positions in the service sector, should be expected to pay more in taxes as a means of sacrifice for the country?
3. With the continuing shift to the right on the United States Supreme Court, there is growing concern about issues such as workers rights, corporate rule, separation of Church and State, abuse of executive power, and, obviously, freedom of reproductive choice. There is growing speculation that Justice Stevens could retire in the next couple of years, thereby awarding George Bush an unprecedented 3rd selection to the high court. My question:
Do you believe that the filibuster is a proper tool for an opposition party in the Senate's advice and consent role during the nomination of a US Supreme Court Justice and would you employ this option if you believed the president's choice was too extreme for the court?
4. In 2005, George Bush made a recess appointment of John Bolton to be US Ambassador to the United Nations. Mr. Bolton has been a controversial character who has shown great and open disdain for the United Nations in the past. Many have described his diplomatic style as "non-existent." My Question:
Will you vote to confirm John Bolton to the position of US Ambassador to the UN when it comes before the Senate in 2007?
Obviously there are many more questions that will require answers before we cast our important Primary Ballots in September and I will look forward to hearing from all the Democratic candidates between now and then. Democracy is hard work but I hope that by participating fully in the process we, as Democrats, will benefit from our efforts.
Chad (The Left) Shue