PATRICK: Weíve got to speed up the permitting and approval processes. I also think we have to do things to connect up good ideas with the capital they need to get started. Remember, it is small and medium businesses where most jobs get created and itís a good idea looking for capital in a neighborhood. I also think weíve got to reinvest in our infrastructure, because if the roads and bridges are falling apart businesses will leave.
PATRICK: Well I think itís a matter of priorities is what it is. The idea of training the state police so that they can recognize and do their duties, who can argue with that. But with gun and gang violence as soaring as it is in urban communities all over the Commonwealth it seems to me that thereís a whole lot else that we ought to have the state police and all law enforcement concentrating on. What I will do as governor is get engaged in the Congress with a balanced and rational approach advocated now on a bipartisan basis by Senator McCain and Senator Kennedy to bring some reason and some real solutions to our immigration issues.
PATRICK: Iím in favor of the MCAS. The problem is that we take the MCAS and we slap it on top of school systems that are already under strain. We need to make the MCAS better; we need remedial programs; we need additional measures of how a student is developing academically so that we are educating the whole child. I think itís a mistake for us to think that all there is to education reform is one high-stakes test.
PATRICK: I agree with one of the Lt. Governorís ideas, about incentives to encourage teachers to come to underperforming schools. Thatís a great idea. I will also say that I support merit pay but I think thereís a right way & a wrong way to do it. I think we do differ on this. The right way to do it is in a way that encourages collaboration. So Iím looking at merit pay by team or by school. How do we lift the whole school, ought to be our approach.
PATRICK: First of all, I commend the lieutenant governor for getting engaged in those regulatory fights in Washington. That is important, both to the Gloucester fleet and to the New Bedford fleet. The issues of protection of Georgeís Bank to the fishing opportunities in the areas where weíre talking about LNG off of Gloucester are incredibly important.
PATRICK: [Yes, but] this is one issue where I think both sides have a point. The folks on the other side of the question from where I am say we should only reward people who play by the rules and theyíre right. I understand that immigration is a serious problem. But people are not coming here for in-state tuition, theyíre coming here for jobs. We need to come down hard on employers.
PATRICK: I support that because of the security issues. I want to know the names and addresses and faces of the people who are here. The people who are driving on the roads, I want the insurance issues dealt with, I want to know the people on the road know the rules of the road. Letís be clear, people are not coming to Massachusetts to get a drivers license, theyíre coming to get jobs. The first thing we have to do is secure our borders.
PATRICK: I have lots of labor and other endorsements and I havenít traded a quid pro quo for one of them.
HEALEY: What did the pledge say?
PATRICK: I have pledged to be open and respectful to all voices. Iím going to do with labor as governor exactly what Iíve done with labor in private business. Which is to negotiate, to do that in an above-board way, to do that within fiscal constraints and to produce an outcome that serves us all. What we need is an active and broadening economic base and to do that in practical ways.
HEALEY: From the very beginning of the administration, we knew reforms were needed. Finally it took a tragedy to have the legislature allow us to get a stem to stern review done.
PATRICK: That stem to stern review was promised when you ran for Lt. Governor - it was owed the people of Massachusetts.
HEALEY: Then why did the legislature stand in our way?
PATRICK: The question always seems to come back to your not taking responsibility when it is your responsibility. I want to be governor and take that responsibility. My plan is to appoint an independent special inspector general, someone who doesnít have relationships with any of the interests on Beacon Hill, to give a professional analysis of both the structural and the financial integrity of that project, and to hold them accountable.
HEALEY: Thatís precisely what we have done. Weíve gotten experts from around the country.
ROSS: Deval keeps talking about bringing in voters who have given up. When people ask me, ĎHow do you get people involved?í one of the things is that we need to talk to real people about real issues. Iím accomplishing something different. Itís called trying to rebuild democracy. And if we canít have a democracy for & by the people, if all we can have is a democracy for rich folks, then we donít have a government anymore.
PATRICK: If you think that our campaign has been just about millionaires talking to millionaires, youíve been missing something. This whole campaign has been about reaching out to everybody and not drawing divisions and separations, but asking people to see their stake in an intact community- poor, middle income, and wealthy as well- because everybody has a stake in our future, everybody.
ROSS: Iím not saying that youíve run a divisive campaign. Iím saying we need policies that are going to reach the most people.
PATRICK: I actually donít think thatís the balance people are looking for. Most people donít buy 100% of what either party is selling. I donít. I think the balance people want is between a fairly entrenched inward-looking establishment and an outsider in the corner office- someone whose experience is broader, who didnít grow up in the Beacon Hill culture.
PATRICK: Well, no is the answer to that. I think itís a mistake to roll the income tax back to 5% right now. I think we can do it but we have to grow the economy so that we can afford to do it. I think its interesting to be lectured on taxes by the Lt. Gov., whose administration is responsible for $985 million of new taxes and fees. Thatís whatís come from this administration. What I want to do is cut the property tax. I want to expand the senior exemption for property taxes and the circuit breaker. I want to extend them to low and moderate income home owners. I want to eliminate all those nuisance fees for playing on a high school team or parking in the school parking lot, and I want to restore local aid so we can get property taxes down and keep them down.
HEALEY: By rolling back the income tax weíll put more money into working peoplesí pockets, and I have a plan to take pressure off our local taxes as well by reforming our pension system, and allowing our cities and towns to invest their pensions with our state treasurerís office. That will take literally hundreds of millions of dollars that is wasted right now and put it back onto the plate of our cities and towns and that will relieve the pressure on local taxes.
PATRICK: Weíve been playing the fiscal shell game with this administration. This is an administration that talks about rolling the income tax back and is responsible at the same time for proposing $985 million in new taxes and increased fees. $1.8 billion in increases in property taxes. Thatís all about shifting the burden. Letís be clear and candid with each other. People are ready for the truth. We can afford a 5% income rate when the economy has expanded to enable it.
The above quotations are from Massachusetts gubernatorial debate on Fox News, moderated by Chris Wallace, Sept. 26, 2006.
Click here for other excerpts from Massachusetts gubernatorial debate on Fox News, moderated by Chris Wallace, Sept. 26, 2006.
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