Name: Rafael Him
Office seeking: State Senate 54th District
City of residence: New Baden
Campaign website: VoteHim.net
Why are you running and why should you be nominated? I served in the United States military for 22 years and I love my nation and I love Illinois. I can no longer sit back and watch our politicians destroy our state and forget about our hardworking people. We need to start putting American workers first and keep jobs in Illinois.
What is the most important issue facing the state? How would you approach it? I believe out-migration is the biggest issue we are facing at this moment. It is a budget disaster waiting to happen and must be addressed immediately. With every family that leaves the state, they take a small piece of our tax base with them, leaving a larger bill for fewer people. Our leaders are failing to keep and attract residents driving a population decline and eroding our tax base. In the last year we had a net loss of 115,000 residents with no signs of slowing down. There is only one way to stop the out of control tax and spend policies our state has had for years. We must eliminate waste, consolidate government functions wherever possible, and find smarter, leaner ways to run our local and state governments. This is what we have done in Clinton County and it has worked. We passed four balanced budgets since I have been on the board, and we are now debt free as of December, 2017. Clinton County is living proof that we can have a balanced budget and be debt free in Illinois.
The state's income tax was increased to 4.95 percent in 2017. Would you try to roll it back? Why or why not?And if so, how would you roll it back? Yes, because taxes are too high. I would start by reducing regulations creating a wave of optimism that will encourage business leaders to invest in Illinois. This will create more jobs and generate more revenue to the state but will must also streamline the state budget so we can fund our schools and cut our property taxes.
Illinois is still running a budget deficit. How should it be balanced? If cuts should be made, what programming cuts should be considered? I have a great amount of experience balancing budgets, while on the Clinton County Board we have passed four balanced budgets and as of December 2017 we are debt free. We are proof that you can balance a budget and be debt free in Illinois. I will be the reform leader and ensure that our state's expenditures match the state's revenues. I will find ways to cut wasteful spending and consolidate duplicative governments in all programs, and I will work with all involved to find solutions to balance our budget.
Campaign funding has been an issue in the last few months. Should there be changes in the state's campaign finance rules? Why or why not? If so, what changes would you want to see? Less regulation and make it as transparent as possible.