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Posted October 4, 2012 | comments 8 Comments

Allen talks economy, health care with Winchester business leaders

By Sally Voth -- svoth@nvdaily.com

At a small business roundtable in Winchester on Thursday afternoon, former Gov. George Allen said repealing Obamacare and opening up domestic energy sources are priorities he'd take to the U.S. Senate if elected next month.

The Republican is seeking to regain the seat he lost to Democrat Jim Webb six years ago. Webb is facing another former governor, Democrat Tim Kaine.

On Thursday, he met with Frederick County and Winchester business leaders, entrepreneurs and other interested citizens for about an hour-and-a-half in a board room at Greenway Engineering.

In introducing Allen, Frederick County Back Creek Supervisor Gary Lofton said the former U.S. senator actively engaged in bipartisanship the last time he was In Washington -- a point Allen made several times Thursday.

"He's truly a person who cares about all of the people, even those who disagree with him," Lofton said.

Reviving the economy is crucial, Allen said.

"Jobs are going to get created, not by government, but by the private sector, and primarily by small businesses," he said.

The federal government taxes job-creating businesses 35 percent, Allen said, adding the global average was 25 percent.

"I think America should be better than average, and that's why I'm advocating 20 percent," Allen said. "The criteria is what's going to create the most jobs."

His proposal would lead to the creation of 500,000 jobs a year, he said.

If elected, the first bill he'd introduce, the former governor said, would be one allowing for oil and natural gas off of Virginia's shores to be tapped. Royalties from that -- which Allen said would be in the millions -- could be used to pay for roads and transportation, he said.

As far as the Affordable Care Act -- "I want to see it repealed," he said.

However, Allen said he'd support keeping young adults on their parents' health insurance policies up to age 26, given the poor economy.

"Repealing Obamacare will save us over a trillion dollars over a 10-year period," Allen said.

He said he's heard from some business owners who've said the policy will drive them out of business, and some seniors are worried they won't have access to doctors who will opt out of Medicare.

Frederick County resident David McNeal is one of those seniors who says he has already felt the impacts of the health care reform.

"My cardiologist just quit," said McNeal, who added he's got 18 blockages in his heart. "He said the hell with it. He's going to go into research rather than treating patients."

"Well, there you go," Allen responded. "That's the real-life reality. You may have health insurance, but you're not going to have access to health care."

Front Royal Town Councilman Bret Hrbek said in his job with Edward Jones he sees the effects of capital gains taxes, with smaller investors upset at having to pay 15 percent on their growth.

"That capital gains tax doesn't just affect the wealthy," he said.

Some business representatives wanted to see the Environmental Protection Agency disbanded, while others pushed for Tea Party initiatives.

"When you go up there, will you join the Tea Party in the Senate?" asked Jay Marts, chairman of the Northern Shenandoah Valley Tea Party.

Allen responded, "I'm going to work with everyone in the Senate. We've got to get this fiscal house in order. I haven't decided what caucuses I'm going to be in. I'm not going up there to be a member of a club. Let's make some tough decisions, and a lot of them have to be made urgently."

When it comes to Medicare and Social Security benefits, Allen said he supports a gradual increase in eligibility age for Americans age 50 and under.

"People are leading longer, healthier lives," he explained.

Harry Smith, senior vice president at Union First Market Bank, said the economy is weak, but getting better.

"Banks do have money to lend," he said.

But, "excessive regulations" have tied banks' hands, according to Smith.

"It's taking a shotgun approach where a rifle should've been used to really go after the few who have made it bad for the many," he said. "I've been in banking for 35 years, and you could take a chance, you could take a risk on a person, a small business. Some failed. Most thrived."

But, today's regulations mean that if someone wanting a loan doesn't have a certain collateral ratio, banks are prohibited from lending them money, Smith said.

Allen also touched on the promise of diesel, compressed air and battery power when it comes to energy. He said his criteria are whether the energy is affordable, reliable and preferably American.

8 Comments | Leave a comment

    If elected, the first bill he'd introduce, the former governor said, would be one allowing for oil and natural gas off of Virginia's shores to be tapped. Royalties from that -- which Allen said would be in the millions -- could be used to pay for roads and transportation, he said.
    _____________________________________

    And maybe we can get an oil spill to finish off our coastline too. This Republican clone is too "oil friendly" and we've got to move on to greener methods.

    Allen wants this job badly, he'll say anything to convince voters. Don't send this Rhinestone Cowboy to Washington.

    Well said Diana.
    So he met with about 20 people in a private forum. What about the rest of the electorate? No one but business leaders and tea b***** have access to this guy? Ok, I guess the other 99% are out of luck. Hey, but it looks like he is listening to the oil companies....Like they need more representation. What a joke.

    bubus....it must be a hybrid....oops.

    1 Truth and 4 Lies About Republicans You Probably Didn't Know
    http://www.policymic.com/debates/15028/obama-and-romney-respond-to-your-questions


    The Big Lies: Republicans Are Betting that Voters No Longer Pay Attention to the News
    http://www.eastbayexpress.com/92510/archives/2012/08/30/the-big-lies-republicans-are-betting-that-voters-no-longer-pay-attention-to-the-news

    1 Truth and 4 Lies About Republicans You Probably Didn't Know
    http://www.policymic.com/debates/15028/obama-and-romney-respond-to-your-questions


    The Big Lies: Republicans Are Betting that Voters No Longer Pay Attention to the News
    http://www.eastbayexpress.com/92510/archives/2012/08/30/the-big-lies-republicans-are-betting-that-voters-no-longer-pay-attention-to-the-news

    90 billion dollars could not bring the hippy fantasy of green energy to fruition. How much more will it take?
    In the current state that our country is in, our focus does need to be on energy independence and jobs. These jobs and cheaper energy will create a snowball effect, for the good, upon our economy, with millions (if not billions) of dollars being pumped in. These are technologies that are already developed and are cheap to implement as compared to the undeveloped technologies of green energy. Green energy has it's place, now is not the time.
    It is unfortunate that marijuana is not the answer to everything, because our neighbors to the south have mastered this technology. If all we needed to sustain a viable economy was dope and dispenceries, you hippies would be in business. Unfortunately for you occupiers, the noise that you make is just an amusement for the general public and does not have and will never have any credence.
    Make your choice wisely, come election day. Popsicles and cotton candy will not put us on the road to a more prosperous nation. Only hard work and sound choices will accomplish this.

      Of course it didn't work.....the oil companies and their profits are too big to let green energy work. The technology for a simple conversion that can make a gasoline/diesel engine run on recycled vegetable oil has been around for decades but the oil companies have blocked it from coming to the consumers. As long as Congress is in bed with the oil companies and enjoying the dividends of their investments in that business, we will not see Lobbyists and their money go away and Congress put the people they represent first.
      Legalizing marijuana would make a huge tax base, but if we emptied the jails of non-violent offenders convicted of marijuana possession & distribution ect., it would cost jobs as the jails reduced their populations by about 25%. Not sharing my opinion here, just the facts.
      As to what Allen says about the Affordable Health Care Act, it all sounds like more party rhetoric. So far, about 50% of health care providers would like to see the act repealed, but those internists treating seniors covered by Medicare are reporting that their patients have better access to the medications they need at lower prices. Many opinions are still pending because of the sheer volume of pages of regulations that the health care industry is going to have to do business by. Just the fact that the law was constructed with primarily the insurance industry should make us consumers wary although it is a step in the right direction as we need better health coverage for all in the US.


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