What Southern Arizona-specific issues will you champion in Congress?
The Star invited Southern Arizona's congressional candidates to answer that question.
This is the second of three Sundays of guest commentaries by the congressional candidates. Find previous columns at www.azstarnet.com/opinion
When I represented Southern Arizona in the state Legislature, I focused my efforts on ensuring we were not ignored by Phoenix politicians.
I worked to make sure there was money for the Southern Arizona veterans home, similar to the one built long ago in Phoenix. I made sure Southern Arizona received money for new roads and highways.
I also took the cases of three dead Tucson children to the Legislature to force change in our Child Protective Services agency when the system failed to protect these children.
I have a long history of working to protect and promote Southern Arizona.
If elected to Congress, I will continue that work.
Jobs is the No. 1 issue facing Southern Arizona. We need to return this state to a prosperous path.
I will begin work on two things immediately if elected to Congress. First, we must repeal Obamacare. Small business owners tell me that is one of the biggest hurdles to climb when thinking about hiring new employees.
And then we must bring stability to our tax code. If no action is taken soon, most small business owners will see a huge tax increase. Tax reductions from the last decade are set to expire this year. I want to see those tax reductions for small businesses and the middle class made permanent.
As a veteran, I will work hard to protect the two Southern Arizona military installations. Davis-Monthan Air Force Base and Fort Huachuca are both cornerstones to our national security and economic drivers for the area.
I served in Iraq as an intelligence officer in 2005 and 2006. I know how important Fort Huachuca is to our troops in the field. It is perfectly situated with few neighbors. I want to see new missions located at the fort.
Davis-Monthan remains a significant installation for Southern Arizona. Protecting it from encroachment and keeping it off any future base-closure list will be one of my top priorities. I do not want Davis-Monthan to become another Marine Corps Air Station El Toro, which closed because of encroachment from surrounding neighborhoods. But I want to make sure the base disrupts life as little as possible for its neighbors. I will use my military background to work with the base and communities around it to ensure Davis-Monthan continues to serve its mission and contributes to Southern Arizona's economy.
My history has shown I am a tireless advocate for Southern Arizona and I will always be one.
Paton is the Republican candidate for District 1, which includes Marana, Oro Valley and SaddleBrooke.