RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – He is the Democratic nominee in Virginia's 7th Congressional District challenging the powerful incumbent, Republican Eric Cantor. Rick Waugh is our next guest in the First at 4 Meet the Candidates series.
Ryan Nobles: Rick, welcome to First at 4:00.
Rick Waugh: Thank you. Appreciate it, thanks for having me.
Ryan Nobles: Rick is a social worker from Louisa and this is your first attempt at running for public office.
Rick Waugh: Yes, it is. Push
Ryan Nobles: I want to show you one of your yard signs. You chose the slogan "End corporate welfare" to put on your signs. What does that mean?
Rick Waugh: Well, it's a simple fact that right now we have a lot of politicians in Washington that are funded by corporations. That's how they, you know, pander to the votes, they pander the votes towards those corporations, and I think what we need to do is we need to end the corporate influence on politicians as one of the reasons why we need campaign finance reform. We need to do everything we can to elect our officials to do a job that we elect them to do, not just pander to whoever funds their campaign wallet.
Ryan Nobles: Playing off of that I wonder what your take is on the federal stimulus plan then because that was a huge investment by the federal government into the coffers of many corporations. Do you think that was a good idea?
Rick Waugh: I think we do need to invest in America. We need to make sure we're doing all we can to provide incentives to create jobs here in the district, here in the United States, not shopping jobs overseas and we need to do all we can to provide banks the opportunity to give loans to folks who have ideas.
Ryan Nobles: You think that's a federal government's role to invest in that respect directly?
Rick Waugh: I think they should be able to provide incentives. It is not the government's role to, you know, to be giving tax incentives to those who are -- you know, the top 2% the wage earners, and Cantor is going to vote for that. Cantor has also voted to bail out his wife's bank. I think it's a bank that you can't be a member of unless you have 40-some million dollars, so how did that help homeowners, so we need to utilize that money for proper investment into schools and into creating jobs and providing clean energy for the district.
Ryan Nobles: Today was a big day in the healthcare debate. It turns out Ken Cuccinelli's lawsuit went forward. Do you believe it's appropriate for the federal government to say that people should be forced to buy health insurance?
Rick Waugh: The people I talk to on the campaign trail, they keep telling me each time that they would rather not have their tax money go towards folks who are uninsured and going through emergency rooms.
Ryan Nobles: I'm so much interested in the lawsuit though. Do you think it's appropriate for the federal government to force people to buy health insurance?
Rick Waugh: You know, when you have to buy auto insurance, if you don't buy auto insurance, you have to pay a fine or a fee for uninsured motorist, and seems to be the same thing with health insurance, and I think the whole idea is for the healthcare plan to work, is to make sure that everybody is insured. That way if people are not having to pay higher taxes on everyone in order for folks who are uninsured to be able to be seen in the emergency room.
Ryan Nobles: Very quickly, my last question for you, if you're elected, it will mean the Democrats probably hold the majority in the House of Representatives. If that's the case, will you vote for Nancy Pelosi as Speaker of the House?
Rick Waugh: I've never met Nancy Pelosi so I can't answer that question.
Ryan Nobles: Could you say you don't have a stance on that right now?
Rick Waugh: No.
Ryan Nobles: Thank you, Rick, for being here. We appreciate it.
See the video at right for the full interview.