Congressional candidate Matt Temperley joined us for a live chat with Patch readers on Thursday. Questions submitted were about his position on healthcare and social security. Temperley will look to challenge Democrat Stephen Lynch in November. He first must run against Joseph Selvaggi in Thursday's Primary Election.
Please note this election is the first since the . Much of JP is now in the 8th Congressional District, held by Lynch. The rest of the neighborhood is still represented by Rep. Mike Capuano, D-Boston and Somerville.
Check out the following short recap, or browse through the
Alex: Are you going to protect Medicare as the guaranteed benefit program it is, or are you in favor of the Ryan plan that ends Medicare and replaces it with a voucher to cover a portion of private health insurance and leaves the remaining cost for seniors to try to pay?
Matt Temperley: The Ryan plan would actually give you the opportunity to stay on Medicare http://www.mittromney.com/issues/medicare.
The only way to lower the price of health care is by bringing the costs to the hands of the people. The voucher system will eliminate wasteful spending of unnecessary medical services. In addition, it will give the people the opportunity to choose among different premiums. Eliminating excessive medical spending and encouraging competition among health care providers will bring the overall costs of health care down.
I've been for the voucher system, together with many other economist, for many years. Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to show you some of my research. It will actually save it, not destroy it.
On Social Security
Alex: Are you in favor of lifting the cap that is paid on social security, which would ensure the program is completely solvent as far as we are able to reasonably predict? Or are you in favor of raising the retirement age and cutting benefits, which would cut the benefits seniors rely on?
Matt Temperley: Unfortunately there is no magic mathematical equation that can fix Social Security. Some painful sacrifices have to be made. The longer we wait, the bigger our grave will be. If not, I can just take the easy right by lying to you. I rather lose the election saying the truth than winning it by lying to people.
When Social Security started in the 40s, our America’s demographic was significantly different. There were much more working people than retirees. After the 1970’s the constant structural changes in demographics (more seniors than working people) has made the Social Security budget rise exponentially every year in comparison to the size of our GDP.
First of all, citizens 55 years of age and above should be able to receive the same retirement compensation that was promised to them. For 54 and below, my believe is that we have entered in a new era where we have to realized that Social Security should be an insurance for seniors in need, and not a benefit everybody gets. In other words, we all Americans contribute to the Social Security fund, but only those seniors who fall below a certain income level will get it. The amount that a retiree is eligible to get equals the amount of income needed to reach the basic national standard. This will ensure that future generations of seniors have the funds they need when they retire.
On Property Tax
Amy Strohman: How will you use your position as Congressman to keep property taxes low?
Matt Temperley: I have realized the strong impact property taxes have on business. It is my duty as a Congressman to pressure elected officials in my district to keep them low so business can stay afloat. That is one of the main reasons many business are moving away from Quincy for example. Much of your money in some cities and towns are directed to public works that make no sense. They do that so they can get campaign contributions from all parties involved. As a result, they take more debt, and the only way to pay for its interest is by raising property taxes.
On National Debt:
Alex: Your website says you are in favor of a strong deficit reduction plan. Are you in favor of letting the Bush tax cuts expire for the wealthiest Americans, perhaps those making over a million dollars a year, in order to help reduce the deficit? The top tax rate is historically low, and at a time where our debt is increasing and the wealthiest among us have been fairly isolated from the economic hardships that have hit the rest of us
Matt Temperley: I favor tax cuts over public spending for stimulus. The reason why is because we take massive amounts of debt for stimulus packages that are ineffective. Keynesian economics does not work when you earn 2000$ a month and you have 100,000$ balance on your credit card. Matt Temperley:
I favor tax cuts over public spending for stimulus. The reason why is because we take massive amounts of debt for stimulus packages that are ineffective. Keynesian economics does not work when you earn 2000$ a month and you have 100,000$ balance on your credit card.
On Finding Common Ground
Victor: Mr. Temperley, in what areas will you find common ground with you Democrat colleagues so that we don't have this complete gridlock that our current Congress has.
Matt Temperley: When it comes to a jobs plan, I would work across party lines. All I want is to make sure that most of it is directed to promote the private sector. The first stimulus package was a total waste of money if you research where it went. I would be more happy to discuss the one he proposed the second time.