Dennis Linthicum on the Issues
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,
that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,
that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. —
That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men,
deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, —
That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends,
it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it,
and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles
and organizing its powers in such form,
as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”
- The Declaration of Independence
Our nation was built on a premise that individual liberty was the goal. The individual should be free to follow the dictates of his conscience while the government was bound by a limited and specifically enumerated set of powers. I believe that we have strayed from these ideals, and we no longer allow families and individuals to make their own choices and create their own happiness - instead, we meddle in other’s affairs and prevent innovation and creativity through regulation and taxation. This is unfair and un-American.
The founders believed that government should be limited in power and elected officials should be kept accountable. The election cycle was designed to keep power dispersed, and checks and balances were created to keep government simple, transparent and accountable. I think that Oregonians also believe in these ideas and want to be given freedom to pursue their dreams and keep their government accountable. I will stand firm on these ideals and they will guide my actions as a US Representative for Oregon’s 2nd District.
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America must protect individual liberties even as we focus on terrorism and our national defense. Initiatives stemming from the Patriot Act and the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) allow for the mass accumulation of personal data without suspicion or warrant. This is a clear violation of individual rights guaranteed by the 4th Amendment to the US Constitution.
Additionally, the 2012 NDAA allows Presidential discretion to detain anyone on U.S. soil, indefinitely. This includes American citizens who may be detained without charge or trial. This is a gross violation of the U.S. Constitution, Article 1 Section 9, “The privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended...”
I will uphold the individual rights and liberties as guaranteed in our nation’s founding documents – the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
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We must balance the budget and control Federal spending. In 1980, Ronald Reagan voiced a successful strategy for bringing America back to economic health. The strategic goals are logical and relevant for America today. If the federal government can lower spending and lesson regulation, taxes can also be lowered. Lastly, Congress must restore a sound money policy and prevent the Federal Reserve from debasing the currency.
The primary purpose of government is to protect your freedom to exercise your unalienable, God-given rights to life, liberty, property and the pursuit of happiness. All to often, we see government picking winners and losers through regulatory policy. This discourages true free market action and creates unfair influence for large corporate interests and well-connected individuals. America was founded on the dream that anyone, from any background, can have a chance at success and have equal freedoms and rights under the law. I want to help restore our government and economic environment to that ideal.
Parents and communities are the best advocates for children and education. Centrally planned and mandated curriculums cannot account for the learning styles, unique capabilities and diverse backgrounds of children across America.
States, counties, local communities and concerned parents must regain control over education. Local communities, not Federal bureaucracies, can better manage relevant programs, and the people in your community are the best individuals for implementing innovation, creating competition, and ensuring educational choice. As parents, teachers and concerned citizens, we have to insist on the best education options for our kids and advocate for school choice. We can no longer be satisfied with the status quo, because the future of the next generation is at stake.
Competition in the marketplace creates the wide variety of energy that we enjoy. Unfortunately, modern energy subsidies distort this market and rob businesses and families of affordable energy.
Subsidizing costly and inefficient energy production wastes resources because companies invest in a false promise and the tax-payer picks up the tab. Not only does this hinder individual freedom and prosperity, but it creates crony capitalism from which only large corporations benefit. Renewable energy is an essential quality of modern life, but there are more sustainable, less burdensome ways to accomplish this and encourage innovation in the marketplace.
It’s widely known that environmental quality improves as income rises. Increased discretionary income allows communities to strive for clean air, water, parks, and animal diversity. If every community can use their ingenuity, their local knowledge and their care for the land to create wise environmental policy, but only if the economy is growing. If prosperity is halted by bad regulatory policy or capricious legislation, both people and the environment suffers.
The environmentalist movement has recently been motivated by a faulty paradigm – that humans is the earth’s enemy. This is false. Humans are the earth’s only friend. Only humans are capable of being reasonable, respectful, thoughtful, scientific, just and moral. The EPA was not created to harass industry or to act as a poor regulator, as is currently happening under the faulty paradigm. Unfortunately, instead of helping our environment and communities, the EPA has become a political bully - this diminishes public trust, discredits scientific reputation and creates onerous and ineffective environmental policy.
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Our state’s farmers and ranchers represent the best in innovation, entrepreneurship and stewardship. It’s impossible to drive through the open spaces of Oregon’s farmland without thinking of the famous line, “oh beautiful, for spacious skies, for amber waves of grain”. The future success of Oregon farmers is endangered, however, because government policies stifle agricultural production with needless, uninformed, and overly burdensome regulations.
Small, family farms are struggling because of foolish environmental policies, production quotas and high taxes. The recent resurgence of the “farm-to-table” movement embraces what Oregon’s agricultural industry has long known - that buying local, letting farmers control their crops and herds in a sustainable way and supporting the long tradition of farms and ranches creates prosperity, health and educational opportunities for America.
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Health care is expensive and confusing for many people, and I know that the American people are frustrated and want solutions to a bloated system. As a Member of Congress, I will vote to repeal the President’s plan for healthcare (ObamaCare) which forces everyone to purchase government-approved health insurance. The President’s plan requires you to pay an expensive tax if you haven't purchased insurance.
This law is especially unfair to young, healthy individuals and small businesses. The medical industry is over-regulated and too complex, creating a hopeless maze of paperwork, litigation and insurance claims. Patients and doctors are prevented from making reasonable choices about their health and well-being, and we must act to cut the red tape and restore control to the individual.
To create an sustainable healthcare system, individuals and medical professionals must be allowed to communicate and practice without bureaucracy and needless regulation. We should allow competition, innovation and new technologies, not hinder creative solutions and new ideas with centrally planned, expensive systems. I support allowing insurance companies to sell healthcare policies across state lines. Health savings accounts and other innovative programs can improve care and reduce costs by aligning specific demands of patients with the incentives that drive efficient doctor/hospital relationships.
For Legal Immigration
I'm encouraged and excited to be endorsed by William Gheen of ALIPAC! I’m against amnesty and for legal immigration. Read more >
See the new NumbersUSA chart comparing Dennis and his opponent on immigration
America offers promise, individual liberty and unmatched opportunity to immigrants. Throughout America's history, legal immigration has resulted in a win-win relationship as individuals prosper and contribute to the well-being of our nation.
Our immigration policy and its systems need reforms. One such reform would be securing the border, and a proper guest worker program that creates benefits for local communities while reducing the incentives for immigrants to cross the border illegally.
I'm a Sustaining Member of Oregon Right to Life. I believe that life begins at conception. We hold in our children the gift of life - let us handle that gift carefully, from conception through adulthood. We must work to protect the helpless and innocent, and I will continually voice opposition to government funding for abortion procedures and fight to protect life at every stage.
My Christian faith is an important part of who I am. I believe that faith should inform our decisions, and I am a strong believer in religious freedom and equal rights under the law. I believe that natural rights, personal freedom and individual responsibility are gifts from God, and I think that it is government’s job to protect those God-given rights for every citizen. Strong families are a critical piece of a healthy society, and I believe that parents and grandparents should be given freedom to govern their children and raise them in the religious tradition and education of their choice.
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The United States Constitution identifies national defense as the most critical function of the federal government. Our men and women in uniform are the best in the world, and I want to make sure that we treat their skills with the respect they deserve - therefore, our Armed Forces should be used when we are faced with threats to our national safety, such as active foreign aggression or invasion. The exclusive power of Congress to declare war must be respected. Executive reactions to imminent or perceived dangers must not be allowed to drag on without Congressional authorization.
As we all mourn mass shootings and senseless violence, we must recognize that responsible gun owners are not the problem, and stop attacking law-abiding people for the actions of a few unstable and law-breaking individuals. Our defense of the Second Amendment must be diligent and vigorous, because it is an essential right of a free people. Congress must halt the unconstitutional practice of restricting a person’s ability to purchase, transport, store, or possess arms on public lands or on that individual’s private property under the disguise of regulating interstate commerce or so-called concern for public health and safety. There are countless examples of responsible gun-owners stopping violence or protecting others through judicious use of firearms, and we should not keep Americans from protecting themselves and their loved ones, should the need arise.
I'm a lifetime member of the Gun Owners of America, Oregon Firearms Federation and the NRA. I support their efforts to protect our essential rights. I think that recent pushes for the regulation of semi-automatic weapons, so-called assault weapons and background checks are both needless and illogical. A weapon is a weapon, and a hunting rifle is no different from an "assault rifle" in the hands of an evil or troubled person, who will likely never perform a background check in the first place. These restrictions infringe on the rights of law-abiding citizens and we should stand together for full 2nd Amendment rights, as the Founders intended.
Although it’s an unpleasant discussion to have, we must recognize that we have serious unfunded liabilities that will harm future generations if they are not addressed. We must keep our promises to seniors but we also must recognize that Social Security and Medicare are not sustainable as currently laid out. Congress must face these reforms with courage and must not continue to mislead Americans about the state of their benefits. Young people, however, should be allowed to engage in alternative methods for planning for their own future and respective retirements, and not be shackled to a failing system.
The 10th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States reads: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.” The federal government has used a gross misinterpretation of the General Welfare Clause, the Commerce Clause, or the Necessary and Proper Clause to justify regulating activities that are outside its proper authority.
The Declaration of Independence identifies certain unalienable rights, from God, not from federal, state, or local governments. All individual rights, even those not specifically enumerated in our nation’s Bill of Rights, are insured by the 9th Amendment. I will oppose legislative acts that unconstitutionally enlarge government authority and threaten our individual freedom.
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Congress has damaged individual liberty and freedom through corrosive tax policies. Our federal tax policy is unsound because it is too complicated, too costly and unfortunately arbitrary.