CONGRESSMAN HUNTER SPEAKS AT CHAMBER ROUND TABLE

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By Janis Russell

October 5, 2014 (El Cajon)- At Thursday’s, September 25th round table at Hooleys Irish Pub, the public participated in a Q & A with Congressman Duncan D Hunter about anything they wanted to know. The San Diego East County Chamber of Commerce organized this event.

President of the Chamber, Eric Lund, first introduced Michael Harrison who works with Hunter. Lund also added that Harrison plans to run for the 71st Assembly district in 2016. “All the work we’re doing… it just reminds me we’re a family,” Harrison said.

Hunter mentioned that Harrison works with Indian tribes among other groups, adding that his district has more Indian tribes than any other Congressman’s. His district goes from Temecula to El Cajon.

One audience member inquired about the military decrease. Hunter told her that “$150 billion is spent on the military” and that the military is cutting down on personnel short term in order to put more money into weapons systems.

Two people asked about border security. “You have to secure the border first,” Hunter responded. “Then everything else becomes easy.” There won’t be illegal immigrants with a secure border and a secure visa system, he added.

Humbert Cabrera from Cabrera and Associates Inc and the El Cajon Rotary Club brought up how his siblings are legal immigrants and they were able to cut in front of the illegal immigrants, noting that people have confused ‘legal immigrants’ with ‘illegal.’

A woman wanted to know if there’s a model of a Democratic country that has a good secure border system. Someone told her, “Israel,” which Hunter agreed with. Hunter later added that Mexico also has a good border system.

A man wanted to know Hunter’s expectations for the 2014 election. Hunter predicted that the House will gain more Republican seats and the Senate will barely gain.

A woman wanted to know Hunter’s opinion of sending the U.S. military to Africa to help those infected with the Ebola virus there.  Hunter told her it would cost less for other organizations such as the World Health Organization or Doctors Without Borders to handle the Ebola epidemic.  He added, “Africa has a huge radical state that’s doing bad things to good people.”

Gerry Minor from FBS Property Management wanted to know more about the recent issue of Islamic people fighting each other in the Middle East. Hunter first suggested that the U.S. should have a massive destructive power that wipes ISIS off the earth.  Another option is to send troops. He noted that the U.S. has only about 1600 troops left after the drawdown in Iraq, adding, “ISIS wouldn’t exist if we stayed there with troops.”

Robert Ayres, Grossmont Healthcare District board member, said, “We’ve got $17 trillion in debt rapidly approaching $18 trillion.” He wanted to know what to do about it. Hunter responded, “If you cut out every single government agency (not including Social Security or Medicare), you would still be running a deficit every single year in the hundreds of millions… It’s about fixing the entitlement system.”

Another man argued that there is a war going on at the border. Hunter told him that it wasn’t a war, and that he himself wants Mexicans to have a good quality of life.  Hunter has long said he wants a secure border before addressing immigration reform. “We do have a budget for it,” he said but added that there is “no will to do it by the Democratic Congress, the President, or the two former Presidents.”

Lund then thanked Congressman Hunter for coming out and to the Hooleys owner, who was among those in attendance, for hosting the event.

For more information about the Ebola virus in Africa, view the story at: http://www.military.com/daily-news/2014/09/16/us-sending-3000-troops-to-liberia-to-battle-ebola.html.

For an update about the Islamic state, go to: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-29387903.

To see other events coming up within the East County Chamber, visit: http://business.eastcountychamber.org/events.

To learn more about Congressman Hunter, go to his website at: http://hunter.house.gov/.

To read coverage or listen to the debate between Hunter and his opponent, James Kimber, visit http://www.eastcountymagazine.org/heated-debate-vets-battle-50th-congressional-district-seat