While an important part of this campaign is to get my message out to you, it's equally important for me to hear back from you about what your questions and concerns are. So please, if you have any questions about the campaign, or my qualifications or stands on the issues (or just about anything, really), please post them in the space below.I'll get you an answer as soon as possible, and both the question and the answer will appear on this page. Feel free to provide your name along with the question, unless you prefer not to. If you have a question but would prefer not to have it, and the answer, posted publically, please submit it on the Contact Uspage. Be sure to include your email address, and I will answer promptly.
Even if you don't want to post a question, you might find what other people have asked of interest. If so, please browse on this page through the questions and answers that have already been posted (I have left a few from earlier campaigns on the page because they are still of interest). You might find some exchange you'd like to follow up on. Your interest is more than welcome.
Real State Funding
Do you have a real state funding historic graphic?
I am not exactly sure what kind of funding you are referring to here. Do you mean funding of a particular program, such as higher education, or corrections, or highways? Or do you mean total state spending or revenues? You can get this kind of information from the Montana Department of Revenue, the Legislative Fiscal Analyst and the Census Bureau. Here's just an example: between 1990 and and 2007, real state general fund spending went from $1.098 billion to $1.701 billion (both figures are in 2007 dollars); that amounts to average annual growth of about 2.6%. Real general fund spending per person went from about $1,373 to $1,790 (again, those figures are in 2007 dollars), so the annual growth rate was about 1.6%. Real per capita income in Montana grew at about that same rate.
What do you think you could bring to this job that nobody else could?
I don't think any candidate should make the claim that he or she is uniquely qualified for the job. And since at this point (December 2011) nobody else has decided to run for the seat, I can't even make the case that I am better qualified than my opponent. But even I could, it wouldn't be a good idea. I think that candidates should stick to describing their own qualifications, abilities, values and convictions, and let the voters decide who will best represent them. I try with this website to present that information about myself, but if I had to summarize my qualifications in a few words, I would say that my background as an economist, a teacher and a member of the House means that I can understand and explain a wide range of complex policy issues. I find that I can be helpful and provide some leadership to my fellow legislators as they grapple with these issues. At the same time, of course, I learn from them about the issues they know and find important.
Physician Aid in Dying
Would you explain the legislation you intend to introduce on physician aid in dying and explain why you think it is needed? Rachel Rockafellow, Bozeman
Thanks for the question. I have posted a statement on this issue on the Issures page, but here is a direct link: Physician Aid in Dying.