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Interim President Jeff Ettinger inside Morrill Hall on Sept. 20, 2023. Ettinger gets deep with the Daily: “It’s bittersweet.”
Ettinger reflects on his presidency
Published April 22, 2024

David Dillon, Independence Party candidate for U.S. Representative, District 3

David Dillon, Independence Party candidate for U.S. Representative, District 3
Image by Ashley Goetz

In light of the current economic crisis, what needs to happen to ensure American economic stability in the future? First of all, this is a financial crisis and the whole point is to keep it from becoming an economic crisis. This thing came from three things: home mortgages, home mortgages, home mortgages. WeâÄôve nationalized the home mortgage market, and so a new set of rules are going to have to come out, and a new set of regulations. ItâÄôs important that Congress both re-regulate and not overreact. On an economic perspective, weâÄôve maxed out our credit cards. So number one on the hit parade is to stop the deficit spending. Number two on the hit parade is energy policy. Can the United States achieve energy independence? If so, what steps do we need to take for that to happen and how long do you think it will take? The answer is that itâÄôs really a wrong goal. HereâÄôs what we want: clean, inexpensive and abundant energy. My view is that you can trade a small amount of oil production offshore for a large amount of subsidization for renewables, most particularly not including corn ethanol, so IâÄôm talking solar, wind [and] traditional nuclear has to be part of the mix. And then also IâÄôve called for a federal investment in fusion energy for long term âÄî this is stuff that wouldnâÄôt be available to us for probably 30 years. With tuition costs rising, what, if anything, would you do to make college more affordable? I would subsidize college. Getting out of college with a giant anchor tied to your neck called student loan debt doesnâÄôt make any sense to me at all. I would fund it from reduced military spending. What is your stance on gay marriage? I just think thereâÄôs a shortage of love in this world, and I think that thatâÄôs a matter for peopleâÄôs churches, not for peopleâÄôs governments. What is your stance on abortion? I believe in limited availability of abortion. What, if anything, would you change about the health care system? I ask my friends on the right to accept the great goal of universal healthcare. I ask my friends on the left to accept âĦ the tactics of the right on reducing health care costs. We should do the 10 things listed on my website to reduce cost, and then we should adopt a system somewhat like the German universal health care system. But I make a big point on the campaign trail: Deal with the cost problems first, universality second and itâÄôs important to do them in that order. How should the United States address the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? In Iraq, we should begin a withdrawal. I want to do it as promptly as possible without being unreasonable. My guess is 12 months. I believe that weâÄôve done all we can now in Iraq. Afghanistan is an entirely different matter. I think that Afghanistan is going to require a dual strategy. One would be a military force as a holding action in concert with other nations, and then a larger, more long-term strategy to attack the root of the problem which is, in essence, ignorance. And that might be a war that goes longer than the Cold War , which took 40 years. What is the most important issue our country must deal with today and how do you plan to address it? The most important [issue] facing us today is the economy; thereâÄôs no doubt about it. I would point out to anyone that has a different priority that whatever your priority is âÄî health care, the environment, security policy, you name it âÄî without a healthy economy, we canâÄôt fix it, so it is clearly the most important thing.

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