Editor’s note: The questionnaires are printed in the candidate’s words as submitted. Candidates for the 3rd Congressional District seat include 17 Republicans, six Democrats, two Libertarians and one with the Constitution Party. Primary elections will be held on April 30.
Name: Dr. Joan Perry
City of birth: Charlotte
Current city of residence: Kinston (for the last 33 years)
Political party: Republican
Current title and/or job: Pediatrician
Best way for voters to contact you: firstname.lastname@example.org
Why are you running?
I’ve never run for political office before, and I don’t believe Congress is a promotion or a career. I’m a pro-life pediatrician who’s dedicated my life to serving God and loving my neighbors. After seeing the New York legislature applaud late-term abortion and hearing Virginia's governor speak in favor of infanticide, I believe we need a strong voice for the defenseless. Our area deserves a conscience-driven advocate for our conservative values – who puts our values above the power players of the DC establishment. We must send someone to Washington who will challenge the status quo and make a difference for us.
If elected, what would you do to stay transparent as an elected official?
Congressman Walter Jones set a good standard for honesty and transparency with the voters by always explaining where he stood. I too am not interested in playing politics so I will be honest about my beliefs, knowing I cannot please everyone. As a pediatrician, I’ve learned to listen first. That’s the only way to solve the problem! By listening first to constituents and community stakeholders, I can then go to work on their behalf.
How would you help address budget constraints on Eastern North Carolina counties following the devastation of Hurricane Florence?
Disaster recovery is one of the rare areas where I believe we can build bipartisan support. Recently, Sen. Tillis and President Trump announced their support for additional federal funding that we need to recover. I will work with them to ensure Eastern North Carolina farms, military bases, businesses and families receive resources to help our communities recover – from agriculture disaster relief and development grants, to infrastructure funding for roads, wastewater, and other critical needs.
How would your legislative agenda reconcile with President Donald J. Trump and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi?
I support President Trump’s efforts to shake up Washington by lowering regulations, cutting taxes, and increasing our border security. President Trump rightly restored the Hyde Amendment, which protects taxpayer funds from being spent for abortion while Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s extreme, pro-choice agenda is out of step with this district’s values. I will work to build consensus wherever I can, but realistically, we will need a new Speaker of the House to start solving our country’s most pressing problems.
While in office, how will you demonstrate your commitment to supporting the military?
My father was a World War II veteran who instilled in me a lifelong respect for anyone who wears the uniform and sacrifices their lives to protect our liberties. In Eastern North Carolina, the military is also a vital part of our economy, and I will fight to keep our bases from being closed and fight for the additional funding they need. As a physician, I believe our veterans deserve better health care than they usually receive at the VA. I’ll fight for expanded options for veterans to seek private sector doctors, which will save taxpayer dollars and more importantly, give veterans better, more accessible health care.
Is reducing the national deficit important to you? How would you balance the budget?
Washington has a lot of problems, but one of its biggest is the runaway, unaccountable spending which neither party seems serious about solving. One of my top concerns for this country is the $22 trillion debt, which grows higher every day and jeopardizes the future for our children and grandchildren. I support a balanced budget amendment to our constitution to force Washington politicians to live within their means like families and businesses here.
What is your top legislative priority if elected?
We must protect our most vulnerable citizens. I will work to defund Planned Parenthood and pass the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which limits abortion from twenty week-old babies. I’ve held babies as small as the palm of my hand and believe we should foster a culture that values all life, from our youngest to our oldest.
What is your vision for comprehensive immigration reform?
As a physician, I know that trauma situations first require us to stop the bleeding, and that’s exactly what’s occurring at the border. We should build the wall, increase technology at the border, and fund ICE and border patrol. But we must also address our outdated bureaucracy that punishes those immigrants who obey the law and fulfill a vital need in our workforce. Our farmers and other industries need laborers. Our unemployment rate is low and too often we cannot find enough workers. But with 76,000 border crossings in February (an 11-year high), we must stop the influx of illegal immigrants, first and foremost.