As part of our coverage of the upcoming New Jersey election, we attempted to contact, usually by e-mail or Facebook, all twenty-four major party New Jersey Congressional candidates and both Senatorial candidates. Those who responded were sent a list of questions, basically the same questions but modified for specific information already available about each of them. Their responses to these "e-mail interviews" are being organized into individual articles and published in the order in which the responses are received, and indexed here with other election coverage.
Jude-Anthony Tiscornia is running against incumbent Democrat Congressman Albio Sires in the 8th Congressional District. In response to our invitation to be interviewed, he said,
Thank you for taking interest in my campaign and various political positions.
As you noted I am running in one of the most heavily Democratic districts in the country. That usually means that the republican candidate gets little to no attention so thank you for your efforts to provide the voters with a balanced view.
Given the nature of the district, it seemed appropriate to ask what motivated him to run.
I firmly believe in the democratic process upon which this great country was founded. That process is dependant upon the voters having a choice. I was born and raised in this district and I have been a Republican all my voting life. Even though the odds are greatly stacked against me I feel it is my duty to provide a competent and viable alternative to the status quo. The alternative scenario would be to let Mr. Sires run unopposed, which would be unacceptable. The underlying problem is the extreme degree to which my district and all so called "safe districts" are gerrymandered. This process is controlled by the local democtratic organization and creates a scenario in which it is almost impossible for a non-Democrat to win.
A legislator is most likely to tackle those issues where he himself sees a problem and has ideas for how to solve it. Asked what problems he thought were most important and what kind of solutions he hoped to bring, he gave us four:
Our elected officials are notorious for over spending tax payer money and a whole host of government programs both foreign and domestic. Our nation's debt under President Obama has soared to an all time high. I am a fiscal conservative who is not afraid to stand up against this administration and reign in spending.
In my opinion, the President's Health Care Reform Act does nothing to address the root problems with our health care system. Indeed, the Supreme Court of the United States has ruled that the act is nothing more than yet another tax trusted upon the backs of the People. The reality is, however, like it or not, the Act is Law. I agree that the bill should ultimately be repealed when a better plan is crafted to replace it. I call on my fellow Republicans to work with me in crafting that plan and I look forward to working with them.
Being from one of the most diverse districts in the country I have a profound respect for the immigrant experience. I agree with those law makers on both sides of the aisle who support a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
d) Student Loan Debt.
I strongly feel that student loan debt could be the cause of the next economic downturn for our nation. There are millions of Americans saddled with both public and private student loans, myself included. Most of these individuals will be burdened with this debt for the entirety of their professional lives. The pursuit of higher education should not require the student to push himself/herself to the verge of financial collapse before ever entering the job market. I find it appalling that FASFA loans carry with them a 6.8 percent interest rate. I believe that rate should be cut in half to reflect the prevailing market rate. It is unfair for the federal government to hold our individual scholastic futures hostage.
Tiscornia faces an uphill battle as a Republican in a strongly Democratic district. We asked what appeals to him about the Republican party.
The most attractive quality of the Republican Party I find is their devotion of fiscal conservancy. Spend less, that's our motto! Also, being from such a heavily democratic district the Republicans have always been somewhat of an underdog and I respect that. The local Democratic machine essentially appoints our state and federal legislators for us and I find that to be unacceptable.
Like many Republicans in New Jersey, Tiscornia proves himself a moderate conservative:
I am what I call an "Urban Republican"; a fiscally conservative, socially conscious moderate conservative. Being from a densely populated area frequently plagued by gun violence I understand the need for common sense gun control laws. I also do not think the Federal Government or any government has the right to tell an individual whom they should or should not marry. I support the legalization and taxation of Marijuana. I also believe in the sanctity of all human life.
Voters want to know why to choose one candidate over another, and Tiscornia has an answer ready:
As previously noted, unlike my opponent Mr. Sires, I am not a career politician and am not a product of the local political machine. My opponent's job description has been "politician" for over thirty years. I am a private practice attorney with my own small business. I have never had a government job in my life. As such, I owe no political favors to anyone. Mr. Sires owes his position to the establishment democrats who put him there and is therefore bound by their agenda. If elected I would be bound only by the needs of my constituents and would be answerable only to them.
He invites anyone wanting to know more about him to ask:
Shoot me an email! firstname.lastname@example.org.
In closing, there were a few other things Tiscornia thought you ought to know about him:
I am a husband and proud father of two little girls. I was born and raised in Hudson county and I am a fourth generation Hudson County-er. My law practice is near my home in Jersey City and I am raising my family and paying taxes here. My wife and her whole family are dyed-in-the-wool Democrats so I am used to a healthy political argument and finding common ground.
Our thanks to Mr. Tiscornia for participating in our efforts.
We will continue providing coverage of all major party Congressional and Senatorial candidates, with focus articles like this one on those who reply to our invitation. If you would like to see coverage of a candidate outside that list, send a note identifying the candidate and the office and we will attempt to make contact.