James Stuart “Jim” Gilmore III (born Oct. 6, 1949, in Richmond, Va.), a Republican, was governor of Virginia from 1998 to 2002.
Gilmore holds bachelor’s and law degrees from the University of Virginia, and then served in the U.S. Army as a counterintelligence agent. He later was elected to public office as a county prosecutor, the state attorney general and as governor.
Preserving our Second Amendment rights
Every state and the District of Columbia will be required to honor the concealed carry permits issued by every other state and Washington, D.C. There will never be an assault weapons ban during my presidency. As the Constitution says, our Second Amendment rights shall not be infringed.
I am committed to the individual right to keep and bear arms by every American who has not forfeited that right by criminal conviction or other action.
There is far too much violent crime in America. But that fact does not arise from the right of Americans to keep and bear arms.
We know what the real problems are: the need for easier involuntary commitment of the dangerous mentally ill, the open borders policy and surer appropriate punishment of criminals.
I am a member of the National Rifle Association’s Board of Directors. I have defended Americans’ Second Amendment rights throughout my career and will continue to do so.
Repairing America’s defenses
We expect our military to defend America, help defend our allies and even provide disaster relief in remote corners of the world. But we have no national defense and intelligence strategies to answer the key question: What do we expect our military to do, and what do they need to do it? Devising those strategies will be Job One when I am president.
We can – and must – help bring stability to crucial regions of the world. We should not be the world’s policeman, but whenever a vital American national security interest is threatened or violated, we need to be able to deter or defeat that threat.
That doesn’t mean we would respond militarily to every situation or even to most. Only vital national security interests – not every interest everywhere – must be protected.
We face networks of terrorists including al-Qaida, ISIS and dozens of others with regional or global reach. Nations that sponsor terrorism, especially Iran – the most powerful sponsor of terrorism – need to be deprived of the capabilities that can endanger America. That is one of the reasons I will revoke President Barack Obama’s Iran deal.
We need to deal with the broad threat of cyber attacks on our industry and government. We need an offensive cyber capability – and plans and strategies to use it – to deter and defeat these attacks.
Restoring America’s economy
I have devised a plan called the Growth Code to repair our economy. The Growth Code’s specifics are:
- To simplify taxation on individuals and families. Those who continue to file their income taxes on the standard Form 1040 will pay a simplified progressive tax of 10, 15 or 25%. Deductions will be taxed in accordance with the “No Double Taxation” rule.
- To unify all business taxation in the United States. All business income will be declared on the same tax form for each business. Taxes will be imposed at the rate of 15% for business-created income;
- To allow for first-year expensing of business investments. An option should exist to allow expensing any credit against future years’ income if it can be shown that the income from the investment occurred after the end of the year in which it was made. Under current law, gradual depreciation schedules prolong recovery of the investment and prevent full recovery of the amount invested in the business for equipment or other assets.
- To end double taxation on individuals and businesses. In the current system, profits, interest or other earned income from investment is taxed as ordinary income in addition to the business tax rate. Spending on consumption is now treated more advantageously than saving for investment. Consumption spending and saving for investment should be treated the same.
- To provide that profits earned abroad are repatriated to the U.S. tax-free because those profits will already have been taxed once by the foreign country. Dividends and capital gains will not be taxable to the person receiving the money, because it has already been taxed at the corporate level.
- Mortgage payments will continue to be deductible for an individual. Also, the Growth Codedoes not disturb the payroll tax, which goes directly to fund entitlement programs. Charitable contributions will continue as deductions.
- Every citizen will pay some form of tax, usually at the lowest 10% level. However, we recognize the need and desire to shield the very poor and families. With this in mind, we propose to establish a Family Refundable Tax Credit of $4,300. Families earning less than the poverty level would receive this credit in the form of a check to supplement their income, reduced in the amount of their tax liability.
We should never engage in nation-building or fight indecisive wars. War is always a last resort. But there are some acts of aggression that have to be defeated. As we learned in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan, if you do not fight a war in a manner calculated to win it decisively, you will lose inevitably.
We should never draw “red lines” against an adversary’s action unless we mean to enforce them.
We cannot rely on the United Nations to produce a diplomatic resolution to any significant problem.
Health care reform
We need an approach to health care that is predicated on free-market incentives. I favor the approach taken by U.S. Rep. Tom Price, who has repeatedly introduced bills such as his “Empowering Patients First Act,” which he offered in June 2013.
Under Price’s bill, health care reforms include:
- Interstate sale of insurance.
- Promotion of Association Health Plans (AHPs) and Health Savings Accounts (HSAs).
- Income-adjusted, “advanceable” and refundable health insurance premium credits.
- A tax deduction for income spent on health insurance for households ineligible for premium credits.
- Malpractice and provider antitrust reform.
Immigration and border enforcement
The first thing I am going to do is get every illegal immigrant who is a criminal off our streets. I will – quickly – secure our borders and end the ability of cities to declare themselves sanctuaries for illegal aliens.
And I will insist that the only path to citizenship for illegals in our nation is a path back across the border. No one who comes to this country illegally should become a citizen. Those who come legally should be able to follow the path that has been taken by millions of other legal immigrants who have come to our country and become citizens.
Reform means that those who legally immigrate regardless of their racial or ethnic identity or their national origin should be welcomed. Those who entered illegally years ago – those who pay their taxes, who work hard to assimilate into our culture, who obey our laws and system of government and learn to speak our language – should be given the ability to work legally.
Climate change is a reality, but the debate on whether it is caused by man is far from over.
We should not agree to any treaties, Congress should not enact any laws, and the administration should not issue any regulations that strangle our economy in pursuit of an ephemeral goal of reducing global carbon emissions. According to The Economist, America ranks between China – the world’s biggest emitter, which exceeds U.S. emissions by about 50% — and India which emits about 50% of what America does. It makes no sense to agree to any global climate change treaty that doesn’t place equal burdens on those economies and those of Russia and Japan, which rank fourth and fifth, according to the same source.
Thursday: Mike Huckabee