Chicago Sun-Times – January 22, 2020
His top priorities include health care, addressing domestic and international terrorism and fighting Illinois corruption.
Gordon (Jay) Kinzler
Running for: Republican candidate for Illinois Congressional District Six
Political/civic background: Colonel U.S. Army Reserve, Previous President of Elmhurst Hospital Medical Staff, Previous President of Glen Ellyn Park District Board, Previous Chairman of the Department of Surgery Elmhurst Hospital
Occupation: kidney transplant surgeon
Education: Loyola Stritch School of Medicine, M.D.
Kidney Transplant Fellowship, St. 6/84
Vincent Medical Center, USC, 6/91
Campaign website: KinzlerforCongress.org
The Chicago Sun-Times Editorial Board sent candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives a list of questions to find out their views on a range of important issues facing their districts, the state of Illinois and the country. Gordon (Jay) Kinzler submitted the following responses:
Please tell us about your civic work in the last two years, whether it’s legislation you have sponsored or other paid or volunteer work to improve your community.
Member of the U.S. Army Reserve, Rank Colonel. Candidate for Illinois House of Delegates District 46. Member of the Glen Ellyn American Legion, Assisted Villa Park VFW with feeding the troops on Thanksgiving 2019. Medical Executive Committee and Immediate Past President of the Medical Staff, Elmhurst Memorial Hospital. Previous President of Glen Ellyn Park District Board, lowered property taxes by 33%. Previous Chairman of the Department of Surgery Elmhurst Hospital.
What are your views on the decision by the U.S. House to impeach President Donald Trump? Has the impeachment process been fair or not? How so? If, in your view, the president should not have been impeached, would you have supported censure? Please explain.
I do not think he committed an impeachable offense. He was making sure that Ukraine who had already received 1.5 Billion and were asking for an additional 400 million of U. S. taxpayers’ dollars and had a history of corruption was spending it properly. The impeachment process has not been fair. Many congressional Democrats had publicly stated they intended to impeach the President soon after he was elected. They then spent years looking for a crime to impeach him for. In other words, they decided to impeach the President before he committed what they charged him with. I would censure any President, Senator or Congressman or woman if they committed an offense that rose to the level that required a reprimand.
How would you reduce the federal budget deficit, which now stands at about $1 trillion for 2020? What changes, if any, to the U.S. tax code do you support and why?
I would reduce the federal budget by spending less on government programs and eliminating programs where possible. Increase taxpayer base by requiring able bodied men and women without children to work. Invest in fighting corruption and utilizing analysis and implementation of running government programs more efficiently.
One change I would make in the US tax code is to increase the deduction for those paying state and property taxes. (The SALT taxes.) I would also encourage states with high state income and property taxes to reduce them. I would oppose any new taxes. I would support lowering taxes.
What changes would you like to see made to our nation’s healthcare system? Would you shore up the Affordable Care Act or work to repeal it in full? What’s your view on Medicare for All? And what should be done, if anything, to bring down the cost of prescription drugs?
Everyone should have access to good quality, affordable healthcare. With the economy improving nationally (although slower in Illinois) the unemployment rate is dropping. With more residents working, more residents will be able to obtain health insurance through their employers.
Medicaid should be for those who are truly in need and have no other alternatives. Those able bodied, employable citizens should be contributing to the system.
The affordable care act has many problems and should be replaced. Medicare is for those who earned it and payed into the system. Seniors who depend on Medicare, earned it, and have limited ability in their older years to earn income to pay for healthcare. They deserve access to care and deserve to be at the front of the line. Medicare for all is unaffordable and would bankrupt our country. It would create long waits for seniors to receive care and result in a form of rationing. Soon the program would go under and no one would receive care. It would also indirectly lead to less people motivated to find work to in order to pay for their own healthcare and increase the motivation for those to flood our borders illegally from third world nations.
Cost of prescription drugs needs to be brought down, particularly generic medications. Americans need to get medications at market world rates. I Would propose and pass legislation that encourages research and cost effectiveness of the development of new drugs, encourage production of generic medications here in the U.S. and stop market manipulation by companies who buy generic companies then reduce production of generics to be able to artificially hike the price that results in higher generic costs.
The Trump administration is awaiting a ruling from the Supreme Court as to whether it can end the DACA program — Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals — which shields young undocumented immigrants from deportation. Do you support or oppose DACA and why? Should a path to citizenship be created for the so-called Dreamers? Please explain.
We are paying a huge price for illegal immigrants that have come to our country. However, it is not possible to send them all back. I will support finding a way to a path for citizenship for those in the DACA program, but this must be coupled with a more definitive immigration legislation that will prevent the influx of future third world Illegal immigrants. This should include funding of an effective southern barrier, investment in enforcement, and recruitment of state and local agencies for assistance. There should be immediate deportation of all law-breaking felons who are here illegally.
What are the three most important issues in your district on which the federal government can and should act?
Provide all residents with good quality and affordable healthcare. Fight Illinois political corruption. Keep our families and communities safe from domestic crime here at home and from international evil from terrorists, rogue nations and socialist/ communist dictators abroad. We do this by supporting our police and first responders here and our military around the world.
What is the biggest difference between you and your opponent(s)?
My primary opponent is a divider and sower of discontent. She is a career politician. You don’t have to be toxic to be a good conservative. As a physician and transplant surgeon I have compassion and sensibility for others.
My opponent is toxic in her approach not only to Democrats she has worked with but even with many in our own party. After she lost the Republican primary in the previous governor’s race, she did not support the party or its candidates. This resulted in the election of Pritzker and Democrats up and down the ticket. I am unifier and look for common ground we can work together on to get things done for our constituents. I have a track record of being the only Republican on a local government board with 6 Democrats. We accomplished a lot, worked together and lowered the property tax by over 33% during a two-year period. I’m not a career politician. I have a regular job and would be honored to be a citizen legislator with term limits.
The biggest difference between me and my Democrat opponent is that I represent the beliefs of our district’s constituents and he does not. I believe in free markets, liberty and doing the work of the people. He is an unapologetic left wing socialist, believes in more government control, and has done little work because of his focus on partisan political investigations and impeachment of our president. I love our country, he does not.
What action should Congress take, if any, to reduce gun violence?
We need to keep guns out of the hands of criminals, domestic abusers and the mentally ill. I think there needs to be reasonable checks to make sure guns cannot be purchased by those who will do harm to others with them.
I don’t think the emotionally or mentally disturbed should have guns. Family members should be empowered by the courts to be able to petition for the temporary removal of guns from emotionally or mentally disturbed people who may be a danger to themselves or others.
Is climate change real? Is it significantly man-made? Is it a threat to humankind? What if anything should Congress and the federal government do about it?
The climate is always changing. It has changed throughout history of our planet. It also is changing in other planets in our solar system. Global warming seen in other planets in our solar system are obviously not caused by man. However, it is important that we are good stewards of our planet and keep it clean and healthy so that all future generations will be able to enjoy our earth. I have had a long history as a member of the environment committee in Glen Ellyn leading path cleanups, recycle events, implementation of proper handling of asbestos, restorations of wetlands in our Park District areas in Glen Ellyn amongst other environmentally friendly projects. It is imperative that Congress keep our land water and air as clean as possible. Congress should Protect our environment, support the search for renewable energy sources and improve our current planet friendly renewable energy sources. Make our current energy sources cleaner to use. We will use our scientific resources and intelligence to adapt to any threat to our globe. Continue to support and stay educated two find new solutions. The environment issues shouldn’t be used for political advantage or used to ridicule others. We need to find solutions by working together.
I agree with the objectives to foster renewable energy. Nonrenewable energy sources will eventually run out and therefore it is always a good idea to prepare for the future. Renewable energy is cleaner and better for the environment. The cost of development is high. In Illinois our current political ruling class led by Madigan has created huge financial deficits in our state government. Had we had better leaders that were better stewards of taxpayer’s dollars there would be more money to develop these programs at a faster rate and in a bigger way.
What should Congress do to ensure the solvency of Social Security and Medicare?
First eliminate corruption by weeding out people who aren’t entitled to receive benefits. There are many examples of this. Recently in Chicago one of the police commanders was cashing in on his deceased mother’s Social Security checks for decades. We need better enforcement of the rules of who’s eligible for Social Security. Don’t allow government bureaucrats and elected officials to take money out of the Social Security’s funds to use for other government programs. Look at ways to get better returns on investment of money in the Social Security trust fund. Streamline the Social Security bureaucracy and make it more efficient. Medicare reserves can be extended for future beneficiaries by focusing on prevention of disease processes before they occur. This will dramatically reduce the cost of treatment. Let physicians, nurses, hospital administrators and other people on the front line of medical care have more input on cost savings with improved quality. Weed out fraud by removing government officials who are renumerated by lobbyists and donors in return for legislation that inflates Medicare services and products which then allow the companies to unfairly profit. Look at some commonsense cost savings through the Medicare program. I’ve worked in the system for over 30 years and see many ways that we can save Medicare dollars while improving quality of care for our recipients.
What should Congress do to address the student loan crisis? Would you use the word “crisis”?
The cost of tuition for college has went up much greater than the rate of inflation. Part of this is due to the fact the government made loans so available that there was an abundance of financing available that students could obtain. Due to market factors universities and colleges found that they could raise their rates higher and higher to the students because the loans were able to pay for those inflated rates. Many students now have huge debt and those that majored in subjects that have little or no real-life job prospects mean the students have little hope of paying off their debt. If Congress persists in wanting to fund higher education with loan availability for students than they need to do more oversight of the quality of education and the return on investment. Rates that the universities and colleges charge students need to be reined in and costs of instruction need to be reevaluated and reduced. In general, anyone who borrows money should be responsible for paying it back. If the product is not worth the price, students should look elsewhere for value. One thing we should foster is our trade schools and job training for jobs that have real-life usefulness. We will always need carpenters, electricians, mechanics, manufacturers and this is what Congress should foster with their ongoing policies.
Give Illinois students a bigger discount compared students coming from out of state. Not give taxpayer funded subsidizes to illegal immigrants but give them instead to the children of Illinois residents. Give in-state students a preference at our in-state schools like other states do for their students. After all, their parents have been paying Illinois taxes their whole life and should get a benefit of an affordable, quality education for their kids.
What should our nation’s relationship be with Russia?
The biggest plagues in the world today are that of socialism and Islamic terrorism. We need to always be on guard to protect our citizens and US interests from abuse by foreign governments. We also need to be on guard to prevent any meddling in our elections by foreign governments. Dealing with Russia should always be done with caution and skepticism. But we should also foster opportunities to be a trading partner with Russia when it benefits our nation. By expanding US markets to other countries, we will ensure economic stability here in the United States. By working with Russia to develop free markets and trade we will get them further away from their socialist/communist roots. Bringing democracy, and free-market mentality to Russia and other socialist communist dictatorships will make the world a safer place in the future. Also enlisting the other superpowers to help purge our world of Islamic terrorism will help rid our planet of this scourge sooner rather than later.
What’s your view on the use of tariffs in international commerce? Has President Trump imposed tariffs properly and effectively? Please explain.
When other countries are taking advantage of the goodwill of the United States are representatives should have the ability to protect US citizens and US industries by using tariffs effectively. As our economic growth is surpassing all the other countries in the world it is obvious that President Trump’s policies on balance seem to be effective.
Does the United States have a responsibility to promote democracy in other countries? Please explain.
The United States should foster open and free democracies throughout the world. Our form of government which is a representative republic is the best form of government the world has seen thus far. By being an example to other countries it will only increase their ability to take better care of their citizens and become better trading partners and neighbors to the United States.
What should Congress do to limit the proliferation of nuclear arms?
Congress should support President Trump especially when he’s abroad. By constantly harassing him with endless expensive and time-wasting investigations, his stature in the eyes of our foreign allies and adversaries is diminished. Particularly with dealing with North Korea. President Trump was on the verge of stopping North Korea from expanding their proliferation of nuclear arms however when their leader sees that our president is being harassed by his own Congress here in the United States he seemed to not have as much goodwill with negotiations with President Trump.
We need to always keep our nuclear arms up-to-date and most advanced. We also need to strengthen our conventional military capabilities. Having a State-of-the-art nuclear arms and a powerful conventional military will be a great deterrent from ever having to use them to defend ourselves.
Please list all relatives on public or campaign payrolls and their jobs on those payrolls.
I have no relatives on public or campaign roles that I’m aware of. I have one cousin who works for the post office. All my brothers and children work in the private sector. None are in politics.
What historical figure from Illinois, other than Abraham Lincoln (because everybody’s big on Abe), do you most admire or draw inspiration from? Please explain.
Henry Hyde. He was a friend and patient of mine. He was humble and had great anecdotal stories. He also gave me great advice.
What’s your favorite TV, streaming or web-based show of all time? Why?
Breaking Bad. It was entertaining.
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Paid for by the Kinzler for Congress Committee. Dr. Gordon (Jay) Kinzler is an Army Reserve Colonel. Use of his military rank, job titles, and photographs in uniform does not imply endorsement by Dept. of Army or Dept. of Defense. © 2020 Kinzler for Congress. All rights reserved.