1114 J Street, Modesto, CA 95354 - Phone: 209.577.5757 - Fax: 209.577.2673|Thursday, May 25, 2017
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U.S. Representative – District 10

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Gubernatorial General Election Overview

U.S. Representative – District 10 | State Senate – District 12 | State Assembly – District 12 | State Assembly – District 21


The Candidate’s unedited feedback below indicates that this presentation of information provides our members an objective which to evaluate candidates. Please review and VOTE for the candidate that you think will best represent our business community and help provide a better quality of life for all.


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U.S. Representative Candidates
Jeff Denham – Businessman / Farmer / Representative
Michael Eggman – Modesto City Councilman
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1. Describe ways in which you as an elected official would encourage a collaborative and cooperative relationship with other units of government.

Jeff Denham: Having a collaborative and cooperative relationship with local government is extremely important to me. The best way to ensure that we are working closely together is to be proactive in meeting with local elected officials and government agencies. I am very clear with our staff that our mission is one of service to the district and that includes other units of government. Both my staff in D.C. and in the Central Valley have consistent and scheduled engagements with their counterparts in local government. This ensures that I can be an effective advocate on the federal level, keeps me aware of relevant grant opportunities and ensures that myself and my staff understand of the impact of pending or established legislation on our community. Additionally both myself and my staff make it a point to be present at as many community and civic events as possible, including both regular business meetings and public occasions.

Michael Eggman: I intend to run an office that is open and accessible to my constituents, local businesses and organizations and, of course, local and state level officials. I believe that we need elected officials to do more at the federal level to engage and aid local and state elected officials. I will have staff present at all local city council and Board of Supervisor meetings to remain engaged with local needs. In these current economic times, I believe that there are resources at the federal level that can be used to supplement local and state governments that are, unfortunately, currently being sent to other areas of our country and state. We need a Congressman who will standup for the Central Valley.

2. Modesto needs jobs. As an elected official, how will you contribute to improving the availability of local jobs?

Jeff Denham : There is no question that we need jobs here in Modesto and across the Central Valley where unemployment remains mired in double digits despite a broader recovery throughout the nation. This means reforming the federal government’s tax and regulatory policies that hamper economic growth and are especially harmful to small businesses and farmers, who provide most of the jobs in the Central Valley. To bring jobs back to the Valley I will focus on representing the long-term interests of our agricultural community, finding a solution to the struggle over water storage and conveyance and improving our transportation systems and infrastructure.

Michael Eggman: As a local farmer and small businessman, I know much can and must be done at the federal level to help spark local job creation. We are a local ag economy and one of our biggest priority at the moment is water. I will vote for federal grants to support local water storage projects, as well as new water reclamation programs and water desalination of brackish water to help meet our water needs. On my farm I’ve also had the unpleasantness to deal with out of control and duplicative regulation and paperwork. To create a more hospitable environment for businesses, we must cut red tape and streamline regulations. And of course, we need to create an environment where our community can compete with other areas throughout the state. Unfortunately when it comes to joblessness, crime, education and infrastructure, you can compare us to Appalachia. And nobody wants to open a business in an area with out of control crime, an uneducated workforce or crumbling infrastructure. We need the federal government to assist us with grants for public safety – starting with the SAFER Grant for improved fire safety and resources to put new cops on the street and combat gang and meth violence. And we need a Congressman who will fight to make our education and infrastructure improvements on parity with the rest of the country. And we can do that without raising taxes. As Californians, we only receive back 74 cents back for every dollar we send to the federal government. I’ll sponsor legislation and always fight to make sure we get more of our tax dollars back in our state to grow our own economy and take care of the neediest parts of our states before subsidizing other areas of the country.I also support tax credits to help new businesses get started and existing businesses expand.

3. If you are elected or re-elected to office, what will be your top issue? Describe the measures you will take to address this number one priority.

Jeff Denham: My number one issue will remain bringing jobs and economic growth to the Valley. That means we need stable federal policies that promote rather than hinder job creation. To ensure economic growth and job creation, we have to put policies in place that help business owners and job creators succeed. I think this means tackling tax reform, fixing our broken immigration system with top-to-bottom reform and improving our water and transportation infrastructure. This also requires investing in our future through an innovative, affordable education system so that our country can continue producing some of the best and brightest minds across the globe.

Michael Eggman: Jobs and water. Please see previous answer.

4. In your own words, describe the role and responsibility of the office you seek.

Jeff Denham: First and foremost it is the Oath I take, to “..support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same.” However I also take seriously the role of public servant. Whether it is ensuring that a veteran receives the benefits they earned or a senior gets their Social Security when they need it, I am privileged to work every day on behalf of my constituents.

Michael Eggman: I believe that the first and foremost responsibility of being a US Congressman is to be an advocate for the people of the Central Valley. It’s not to get involved in partisan debacles or engage in political theater. Nor is it to serve the interests of one political party. My primary role will be to create a more hospitable economic climate for my constituents and to fight for the needs of the Valley in Congress.

5. How do you evaluate the impact to business when making voting decisions?

Jeff Denham: As a businessman and farmer myself, I think about how each piece of legislation would affect my operations. I face the same challenges with an overcomplicated tax code, increasing healthcare costs and an uncertain regulatory environment. My personal experience, especially with burdensome regulation and government overreach, helps guide my decisions.

Michael Eggman: As a business owner, I know that business does what government cannot – in offering many services and helping folks move out of poverty. The needs of businesses will factor into every vote I take.

6. What is your relationship with other locally elected officials? When did you last meet or correspond with one of our locally elected state of federal officials?

Jeff Denham: I speak almost daily with one of our local elected officials. This week I will be meeting with local supervisors, several mayors, law enforcement officials and city councilmen who all have issues and concerns that intersect with my federal responsibilities.

Michael Eggman: As a candidate, I don’t have the ability to meet with elected in an official/government capacity, but I regularly meet with and seek the counsel of elected officials including mayors and Supervisors on the campaign trail and look forward to working with them closely in Congress.

7. What are your plans to create economic development and jobs?

Jeff Denham: I want a future for the Valley that creates opportunity for our children to stay and raise families here, rather than forcing them to leave to find available jobs. This means stable federal policies, fiscal prudence in our spending and a government that gets out of the way of job creation. We cannot dictate the future of our economy, but we can unleash the natural dynamism and creativity of Central Valley entrepreneurs, farmers, students and community leaders to build a better future. I intend to continue spending each day of my time in office helping to support this vision through the legislation I support and the casework my staff and I perform on behalf of my constituents.

Michael Eggman: Economic development and job creation is my most important task. See answer 2 above for my plan to create jobs and spark economic development.

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