An Interview With Nathan Deal, GOP Candidate for Governor

Barbara Kieker

Monday, April 19th, 2010

Nathan Deal is a Republican candidate for Georgia Governor and currently the U.S. Representative from Georgia’s 9th Congressional District.  He has served in the U.S. Congress for 18 years, creating a conservative voting record. Specifically, Deal voted against the 2009 economic recovery package, the bailout of General Motors and Chrysler, enforcing limits on CO2 emissions and the health care reform bill.

In email correspondence, Deal provided the following responses to AlbanyCEO.com:

As Governor, how would you promote economic development in small metro areas like Albany?

We must capitalize on each metro area's strengths. Albany, for example, is a regional center for medical care with two major hospitals and numerous medical specialty practices. It is also a center for education, agriculture, media, and is a transportation hub.  All of those present potential opportunities for growth.

What is good for Albany should also be good for the region.  Jobs in Albany are also going to be sought by persons living throughout Southwest Georgia. The entire region must pull together as one strong economic development team to help attract new and expanding business.

How would you accelerate job creation in the state?

We need to make certain we are doing the things that make Georgia attractive to business. For example, we need to look at the possible elimination of sales tax on energy used in manufacturing. We also need to make certain we have a well-trained workforce that is ready as businesses rebound from the recession and begin to hire new workers.

How do you plan to work with the state legislature to close the state budget gap?

Like most Georgians, I remain hopeful that we will see some improvement in our state’s revenue picture by the time I take office. If not, we will continue the effort to prioritize state government. I support a move to zero-based budgeting, but that cannot be realistically accomplished in a single budget year. The revenue picture will decide what the state can afford.  I will work closely with the General Assembly to make certain our budget accomplishes that goal. We will live within our means.

Given your opposition to current health care reform proposals, how would you address key health care issues like rising costs and physician shortages?

I am not against health care reform; I am against the federal government creating a one-size-fits-all plan.  We need to solve problems, such as denial of claims based on pre-existing conditions. We also need to have a high-risk pool for the 250,000 Georgians who are otherwise uninsurable. Tort reform has gone a long way in Georgia to help keep costs down.  That legislation is currently facing court challenges. As governor, I will react to any legal challenges swiftly and work with the General Assembly to make certain that we have fewer doctors practicing defensive medicine.

What other initiatives do you endorse to make the state a great place for business?

I would like to see Georgia use its existing college business schools to create a clearinghouse for information for Georgia’s existing small businesses. Using the model of the Extension service, we could have experts in a number of business disciplines available to help businesses on issues ranging from taxation to corporate structure. We have technical colleges within a half-hour of most Georgians and most of our university system schools have a business program. These could help our existing businesses become stronger and more efficient.

More information on Nathan Deal can be found on his official campaign website at http://www.dealforgovernor.com/index.aspx

About Barbara Kieker

Barbara Kieker is a freelance writer who writes on business-related topics for a number of web-based properties. She also provides communications services to Fortune 500 corporations, small businesses and nonprofit organizations.

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