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In anticipation of the August primary, KSMU invited all Republican and Democratic candidates running for Congress in the 7th district to sit down to discuss their backgrounds, priorities, and campaigns. In today’s spotlight is Republican Mike Moon of Ash Grove. KSMU’s Missy Shelton reports.
Shelton: I’m sitting here at the KSMU studios with Mike Moon. He’s a Republican candidate for Congress, running in the 7th district. I’d like you to tell us about your background.Moon: I’m a family man. I have five children. We’ve lived in Missouri for nearly 32 years. I’ve been with St. John’s Hospital for 25 years. My family and I operate a farm out in Ash Grove. We raise livestock, cattle, horses, goats, chickens, and we’ve had a few hogs too.Shelton: What do you do for St. John’s?Moon: I do the marketing for the fitness centers.Shelton: Tell us the top two or three issues you’re focusing on in your campaign.Moon: The number one thing in Southwest Missouri is the issue of jobs. People are saying, ‘We’ve got to have jobs here.’ And who can create jobs? Well, in my opinion, it’s not the federal government but it’s kind of funny because in the past year or two, the only sector in our nation that has really increased in jobs is the federal government. And how do they maintain those jobs? It’s through taxation. I think we need to look at small business and we need to allow them, through the reduction of unnecessary regulation and higher taxes, so that they can hire more folks and produce more product. And I think that will benefit the economy by spurring that on. Also, I believe in addition to jobs and taxation, it would be the illegal immigrant problem. Throughout the country, we have about 12 million illegal aliens. It’s kind of funny I think because I’ve heard we can’t round them up and deport them because we can’t find them. Do you recall a few years ago, though, when we had the mad cow scare? In Washington state, there was one lone head of cattle that was diagnosed with mad cow. They can not only trace it back to the dame and the sire but to the exact stall in which it was born. So, I thought maybe a common sense approach would be just getting every illegal their very own cow.Shelton: You mentioned tax breaks for businesses. In this environment, do you think there’s some negative reaction to the idea of giving businesses a tax break? Could that be seen as some sort of bailout?Moon: Well, I think when you look at history, even John F. Kennedy had the same vision. He knew, rightly so, that if he reduced taxes, it would stimulate the economy. He had one of the greatest, as far as length of time, greatest economic booms in history. I don’t look at it as a bailout because when you reduce corporate taxation, for example, you allow them to hire more employees, produce more product. Then, when people buy the product, that will increase tax revenues there. I’m not looking at something that will be like the TARP fund or the stimulus package because I don’t think those were rightly done. I believe that we can do it as close to home as we possibly can, at the local level, and that will spur the economy as a result.Shelton: What are the primary sources of funding for your campaign?Moon: We’ve had some individuals contribute. I’m financing quite a bit of it myself. We don’t have any large donors particularly but it’s a grassroots campaign. I’ve had the saying all along that on August 3rd, a vote is going to be worth much more than a dollar. That’s the only really important poll there is on August 3rd. So, we’re hopeful we’re reaching the right people, they’re taking hold of our message and we’re getting the word spread in that way.Shelton: Are you working with any consultants on your campaign?Moon: I have an advisor. I met a fellow about a year ago who has been in the political realm for, I think he told me 35 years or a little more. He’s worked on lots of different campaigns and so, he’s giving me advice here and there. I think it’s paying off, so he’s giving me some good stuff.Shelton: Would you mind disclosing your advisor’s name?Moon: It’s public knowledge. It’s D.F. Euckel. He lives in Mountain Vernon.
Note: To view interviews with other candidates, click on "Road to the Capitol" on our website, www.ksmu.org.