2nd Congressional District candidate Madeline Hildebrandt

  • NAME: Madeline Hildebrandt
  • POLITICAL PARTY: Democratic
  • OCCUPATION: Adjunct History Professor
  • CITY OF RESIDENCE: Socorro
  • RELEVANT EXPERIENCE: Lead Two County Organizer/Director (volunteer) — John Kerry Presidential Campaign
  • Elected Delegate — John Kerry Presidential Campaign
  • Field Volunteer — Bill Richardson Presidential Campaign
  • Representative at Large — College Student Government
  • School Steering Committee Elected Representative
  • Decades of Political Activism
  • Veteran of the US Coast Guard, military police
  • Educator in US History, knowledgeable in Labor, Terrorism, Diplomacy, and Power structure
  • EDUCATION: PhD: History — Sport History, Masculinity as Power — University of Maine
  • MA: History — Labor History — San Francisco State University
  • AA, BA: Individual — Concentration in History, Middle Eastern Terrorism — Columbia College
  • Credential: Maritime Law Enforcement — US Coast Guard
  • CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: www.mad4nm.com

IMMIGRATION

1. Please give your position on DACA.

DACA serves a good purpose for the people of New Mexico. Children who were brought to this country shouldn’t be penalized for the actions of their parents. I propose a path to citizenship through education, in which studies apply toward citizenship requirements; upon earning a diploma/degree, they also earn citizenship.

2. Do you favor amnesty, a path to citizenship or worker permits for most or all of the people now living illegally in the U.S.? Who do you think, if anyone, should be deported?

All undocumented people, residing in the U.S. for five years or more, should be eligible for a program of relief — primarily worker permits, or DACA. Members of Cartels, or known drug or gun traffickers would be eligible for deportation.

3. Do you believe the borders are secure enough? If not what do you propose should be done to increase their security? Do you support Trump’s proposal to build a $25 billion wall?

In order to secure our borders effectively, we should be working with Mexico to increase the quality of life in that country. Fences and walls aren’t effective as long as airplanes, drones, boats, tunnels, and catapults can go under, around, and over a wall.

4. What’s your position on skills-based immigration vs. family-based?

Our nation was built on family-based immigration. This builds stability within the family unit, which then contributes to community stability. I would push for a program of mentorship within communities, in which an American citizen is assigned as mentor — similar to the ALLIES Mentoring Program.

 

SCHOOL SAFETY AND GUN CONTROL

1. Do you favor a federal ban on the sale of assault-style weapons? If so, what would you do about the millions of the assault-style weapons now legally owned by American citizens?

New Mexico has suffered this tragedy with the Aztec school shooting. We must cross party lines to address this epidemic. We must discuss weapons ways to remove guns from the hands of youths, mental health screening via school counselors, and bully abatement training.

I believe that one bad actor can spoil a movie — in this case, numerous people have chosen to use assault-style weapons in mass shootings. As a Veteran, I have guns, but believe assault weapons belong on the battlefield. A ban is probable, with a buyback program.

2. What other, if any, gun law changes would you support?

I support banning bump stock and silencers. Neither of these is necessary for hunting, or sport. I also support raising (the) purchase age, and strengthening mental health screenings.

3. Would you favor a repeal of the 2nd amendment?

I do not support a repeal of the 2nd Amendment. This amendment reserves to states the right to keep a militia — namely, armed police forces and National Guard — so the issue isn’t cut-and-dry. As a gun owner, I believe that the people have the right to keep and bear arms.

4. While much of the discussion on school safety centers on gun control, what other measures would you support to make schools safer?

We must address mental health services within schools, with increased counselor presence on campus. Schools must be appropriately funded, reducing class size so teachers and students are better engaged. A positive learning environment, with safe, bully-free classrooms are necessary.

 

FOREIGN POLICY

1. What do you propose the U.S. do with regards to Syria?

Syria is essentially a proxy war between the U.S. and Russia, but also between Israel and Iran, at the same time that it is a 4-way Civil War. This requires delicate international diplomacy that is not currently at play. We must focus on putting back together a strong State Department through which diplomacy takes place.

2. In Afghanistan?

We must support the Afghan government in developing a strong police force. It is through policing, rather than military response, that a civil nation maintains control of various factions. A continued partnership, rather than military dominance can help lead to an independent Afghanistan. We must also provide economic guidance.

3. In Mexico?

We must establish fair and equitable trade balance with Mexico, and rewrite trade policies so that Mexico’s living standards rise. Leveling the playing field will create a balance which will lead to less migration stressors. The strain between our two governments needs to be addressed at the Presidential level.

4. Relations with Russia are said to be at their worst in many years after allegations of Russian meddling in our elections, the Trump administration’s decision to sell weapons to Ukraine and the recent expulsion of 60 Russian diplomats. Do you approve of these actions? What would your posture be towards Russia?

While we cannot appear weak, neither should we be posturing militarily. We must hold Russia accountable for its cyber-warfare and election meddling, yet still attempt to avoid rising tensions. This is in the sphere of diplomacy, which originates in the Executive Branch and is severely lacking at this time. I approve of the diplomat expulsion, but not weapons sale.

5. If talks fail, would you support a pre-emptive strike on North Korea to degrade its nuclear capabilities and missile delivery systems?

Relations with North Korea are not as simple as this question purports. It is essentially a buffer zone between China and the US/South Korea. A strike on North Korea would be seen as belligerence toward China. Negotiations and diplomacy must include discussions with China. A pre-emptive strike also negates any agreements between us and our allies, so must be undertaken with care.

 

ECONOMY

1. How would you make New Mexico less dependent on federal spending?

New Mexico should not need to be less dependent upon federal spending, as it is a beneficiary of military and public lands programs. This is a boon to our state. However, we must diversify our economy so that no one thing dominates to the detriment of others. For instance, we must increase investment in green energies (without jeopardizing existing jobs) and develop other industry, particularly in technology.

2. Do you support of oppose President Trump’s imposition of higher tariffs on China? Why or why not?

I do not support higher tariffs on China because they have not been thought out in advance. The steel industry, for instance, has been given a tariff for all imports. This affects close allies (Japan, Korea, Canada) in addition to China. American businesses will pay higher prices for steel, which affects their bottom line, thus negatively affecting our economy.

 

OTHER

1. Do you favor or oppose limits on late-term-abortion, and do you believe tax dollars should or should not be used to fund abortions?

I oppose limits on abortion, as this is a personal decision best made between a woman and her doctor. Tax dollars should not be used to fund abortions, but women’s health clinics must be funded for the many medical services they provide.

2. What should be done at the federal level to address the crisis of opioid addiction?

Two things must be done to help combat the opioid crisis. First, medical practitioners must be regulated to prevent over-prescribing opioids. Second, medical marijuana must be legalized, with cannabis removed from schedule 1, so that cannabis can replace stronger opioids as a treatment option.

3. Do you favor or oppose a national single payer health care system? Explain.

We must move to universal healthcare to become aligned with other industrialized nations. Health care spending is out of control, and returning to the failed insurance system of the past is not feasible. Medical, dental, and eye coverage for everyone will create a healthy workforce, leading to a stronger economy.

4. What would you do to rein in health care costs?

Healthcare spending must be streamlined so that the current high administrative costs come into control. The various reimbursement rates have contributed to market volatility. But, an integrated system will lead to negotiated healthcare and pharmaceutical prices.

5. If elected, are there any issues you could work with President Trump on, and would you be willing to do so?

Donald Trump wants to establish a space force, and is interested in lunar exploration. I would be very interested in working on these programs with him.

6. If you had to decide today, would you vote to impeach President Trump?

As a regular citizen, I cannot see the whole picture, and would need to see the facts prior to making any decision of that magnitude. The evidence available to a member of Congress, and to a private citizen, are not comparable.

7. Should the federal government play a role in setting education policy for the nation’s public schools? Explain your answer.

The federal government must play a role in setting education policy, because we need to have equity across all parts of the nation. However, we must be wary of perpetuating current mistakes by focusing too closely on standardized testing. Education policy should begin with input from educators in the field.

8. Why do you want to be a member of Congress?

After the Women’s March of 2017 I realized I could no longer sit on the sidelines as many issues in our country need to be addressed. My experience as military police, as EMT first responder, as a mother and educator, propelled me to make this decision. And my education in “Middle Eastern Terrorism,” “Labor History,”and “Masculinity as Power,” with a PhD in History inform that decision.

 

PERSONAL BACKGROUND

1. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been the subject of any state of federal tax liens?

No.

2. Have you ever been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy proceeding?

No.

3. Have you ever been arrested for, charged with, or convicted of drunken driving, any misdemeanor or any felony in New Mexico or any other state? If so, explain.

No.

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