After a shift in the population of South Carolina, as evidenced by the 2010 U.S. Census, a brand new United States Congressional district was carved out — District 7 in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Chesterfield County is part of this new congressional district, and after a crowded primary election, two contenders remain: Republican Tom Rice and Democrat Gloria Bromwell Tinubu.
They face each other in the final contest, the Nov. 6 General Election.
The Cheraw Chronicle asked the candidates three questions, and both candidates provided responses.
Those questions and answers follow.
1) “What role does partisan gridlock play in the current political scene? And, if it’s a problem, what do you plan to do about it?”
Rice said, “Congressional approval ratings are at all-time lows, in part because too many Washington politicians care more about scoring political points than solving our nation’s real problems and getting America back on the right track. We need leaders that will work to solve these problems. I want to help bring down our national debt, reduce spending, and get our fiscal house back in order. Our country needs jobs, and I want to work to foster an environment that is conducive to job growth. I will be a supporter for job creation and economic development … In January, our nation will be hit by the fiscal cliff. I will work to make sure that the tax burden on our middle-class does not increase. I oppose letting these tax cuts expire. The people in this district want jobs and a better economy. I will work to help them.”
Tinubu said, “I think that a big part of the President’s problem in the past years is that he didn’t have a House of Representatives that would support him. One of the first things the Republicans stated as their goal was to make President Obama a one-term President. It wasn’t to improve the country. I would work to insure that Americans have the opportunities to pursue their dreams and I would work with my colleagues in both parties who share that goal.”
2) “If, during your elected term, you could accomplish just one goal, what would that goal be and how would you make it happen?”
Rice responded, “I will focus on three things: getting our economy back on the right track, bringing new and better jobs to our district, and using my experience in the private-sector to bring some fiscal responsibility to government.”
Tinubu responded, “The one goal I would focus on is improving education. I would work to get our schools and education up to par with our peers in other developed countries. If we can’t provide a well educated workforce we won’t be able to compete in the world economy. I would work to see that school-to-work programs are expanded and ensure proper funding for Pell Grants and other higher education scholarships and programs.”
3) “What’s your personal motivation for running?”
Rice said, “If we don’t dramatically change the direction we are heading in America, I am afraid that my 3 sons, and your children and grandchildren will not have the same opportunities to achieve the American dream that my generation has had.”
Tinubu said, “My grandchildren, I want them and all future generations to have the opportunities that I had. Our children and grandchildren deserve the best possible world we can leave them.”