2008-10-30 / News

Sen. Reed looking for a third term

By Adrienne Downing

Republican Bob Tingle will face incumbent Democratic U.S. Senator Jack Reed for the Rhode Island senate seat in Tuesday's election. Here is an overview of some issues important to them.

Jack Reed

Jack Reed, 58, was first elected to public office as a Rhode Island state senator in 1984. After serving six years at the state level, he represented the state in the U.S. House of Representatives for six more years before being elected to the U.S. Senate in 1996.

He is a member of four Senate committees, including the Armed Services committee, a position that his 1971 graduation from the United States Military Academy and subsequent 20 years of combined active duty and reserve service prepared him for.

Reed sees the recent financial services bailout as a step in the right direction to get the economy moving again. "For a long time, we were putting a Band-Aid on the situation when it really needed a tourniquet. We needed to get the credit markets operating again so companies could continue to do business," Reed said.

He said that putting standards in place that did not previously exist and making risk assessment much more thorough would go a long way to prevent a similar crisis in the future. "Basically, part of the problem was that we did not have good underwriting practices in the real estate market. We adopted regulations last March that changed that, but before that we had companies that were giving no-document loans for houses and they were out looking to give money to people," he said.

Another step to helping the economy would be to stop spending American funds in Iraq in places where they could be fi- nancing themselves. "I think we should get the Iraqis to pay for some of their own infrastructure projects," Reed said. "We should also ask the Europeans and NATO to live up to their end of the bargain. Manpower should not only be adjusted by us, but also by NATO troops."

Although Reed's name has been mentioned in connection with a cabinet post in the Obama campaign, the senator says he is not interested. "Events since 2000 have turned a surplus into a huge deficit. We have a great opportunity here to do good things for the American people and that is where my focus is," Reed said.

Reed is married to Julia Hart Reed. They have a daughter, Emily, and make their home in Jamestown. For more information about Senator Reed, visit www.reed. senate.gov.

Robert "Bob" Tingle

Bob Tingle, 51, is running for the second time for a United States Senate seat. He was also a candidate for the United States House of Representatives in District 2 in 2000.

Tingle says the economy and immigration are two key issues facing Rhode Islanders and the nation. He says a little finger pointing is in order to assess and fix what caused the nation's recent economic crisis, including asking the key questions "Why did this happen, who was responsible and how are we going to fix it."

"One thing we have to stop is corporations from contributing to campaigns. It is a huge conflict of interest," he said. "If you watched the commentary after the bailout, there was one common thread. Most of the senators did not want to point fingers at anyone. Of course they didn't, because if fingers were pointed, it would be pointed right back at them."

He does not support another tax stimulus package as a way to get the economy back on track. "Everyone is going to take that $1,000 and go buy something at Wal-Mart with that money. We will borrow it from the Chinese to give it out and then give it right back to them when we spend it," he said.

Tingle says he would prefer to use the money to build the nation's infrastructure.

He is also a strong supporter of legal immigration. "I am strongly opposed to giving amnesty to people that break our laws by entering our country illegally. We need to seal our borders to stop the flow of illegal immigrants, some of whom are criminals or potential terrorists, into our country," he said. "We need to come down hard on employers that hire illegals. If there are no jobs for them, these folks will not come here. I do not fault anyone that is trying to find a better life for themselves and their families. However, they must obey and respect the laws of our country."

Tingle is married to his wife Barbara. They have two grown children and reside in Westerly. For more information on his views, visit www.bobtingle.com.

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