Paul DiGaetano Responds To The Record
1) Why are you the best candidate?
As a blue-collar conservative who believes that a smaller, more efficient government works best, I can relate to the family that worries about making ends meet. That is why I have consistently won reelection in heavily Democratic areas. I have the leadership, knowledge and experience that money just can't buy.
2) What do you think is the state's most pressing problem and what would you do to address it?
Spending in Trenton is simply out of control. That is why we need to cap state spending. To paraphrase President Ronald Reagan, we don't have a deficit because we haven't taxed enough, we have a deficit because we spend too much. Controlling spending will control tax increases as well.
3) What would your first executive order be?
I would establish an elite unit within the State Police to work on matters of port security. Protecting citizens is a vital function of government, but maintaining working ports are as well. Working with shipping companies, this unit would protect our citizens while ensuring the free flow of commerce.
4) What would you do to combat high property taxes?
I would implement my spending cap plan that will return excess state revenues directly to taxpayers. Government cannot spend taxpayers' dollars if it doesn't collect them in the first place. By limiting the money government can spend, we can control spending, control taxes and eliminate the reliance on borrowing.
5) How would you balance the budget? Which, if any, taxes would you raise? Which, if any, spending would you cut?
I would not support any tax increases, period. My plan to cap state growth will force departments to spend only the funds allotted. If the Democrats didn't increase spending by $4 billion last year, New Jersey wouldn't have a deficit. By controlling spending the state can avoid future deficits.
6) How would you replenish the Transportation Trust Fund?
The state needs to fulfill its required obligation of $380 million to the fund annually. This has not been done in three years. Second, dedicate the remaining portion of the gasoline tax not already dedicated to the trust fund. Third, remove administrative costs from the bonds issued for this program.
7) What would you do to improve state government's image in terms of ethics and campaign financing?
I would enact the pay-to-play reform drafted under my direction as the Assembly Republican leader and currently sponsored by Sen. Kean. The current executive order signed by former Gov. McGreevey fails to address leadership PACs, is riddled with loopholes and does not affect candidates at the local level.
8) What would you do to end the bitter partisan fighting in New Jersey and the nation?
As Assembly majority leader I built a reputation for reaching across the aisle to work with Democratic leaders. As governor I would restore respect and civility in Trenton to find common ground with the Democrats willing to make New Jersey a better place to live, work and raise a family.