Q&A: 2nd Congressional District Candidate Yvette Herrell
- NAME: Yvette Herrell
- POLITICAL PARTY: Republican
- OCCUPATION: Small business owner, Realtor
- CITY OF RESIDENCE: Alamogordo
- RELEVANT EXPERIENCE: Small business owner/operator; served four terms in New Mexico House (2011-2018); chair of ALEC International Trade and Federalism task force; co-founder of Article V Caucus and Balanced Budget Amendment Taskforce; board position for the American Legislative Exchange Council; board position Flickinger Center for Performing Arts and local BBBS; Disaster Relief Team — Habitat for Humanity and Hands of Grace
- EDUCATION: Graduate of ITT School of Business
- CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: www.YvetteHerrell.com
What is your opinion of justice in policing legislation introduced in Congress recently after protests following George Floyd’s death?
Democrats chose to shut out Republicans from the drafting of this legislation while not allowing a single Republican amendment. So the bill did not strike the right balance between common sense reforms and supporting our officers. I will always stand with our law enforcement in Congress.
What is your opinion of the use of federal law enforcement officers in operations such as Operation Legend in which additional officers were sent to Albuquerque?
Operation Legend and other supplemental federal law enforcement actions are needed to help curb the out-of-control crime crisis in our major American cities. Local mayors, sheriffs, and law enforcement should work with the federal law enforcement officers and utilize their expertise.
What is your opinion of the coronavirus response packages passed by Congress and signed by President Trump? Is there anything you would have done differently?
I believe Congress acted in the best interest of the American people to help protect individuals and business owners from inevitable financial hardships. That said, Congress should not have added unneeded funds for entities like the Kennedy Center or allowed large institutions like Harvard to access the loans.
What actions to restore the economy, if any, do you feel Congress should take once the outbreak has been contained?
To begin the great American comeback, we need Congress to work with the president to cut job-killing regulations, lower taxes for middle-income Americans, and invest in infrastructure – roads, rural broadband, and rail to ensure our industries can get goods to market safely.
What is your position regarding climate change? What actions should Congress take, if any, regarding the environment?
I believe our farmers and energy producers have been, and will continue to be, good stewards of our land, because the land is their livelihoods. We need common sense regulations that promote that stewardship, not radical government takeovers like the Green New Deal.
What is your opinion on energy initiatives that have been introduced both on the federal and state level such as the Green New Deal and the New Mexico Energy Transition Act?
These are radical proposals that will kill New Mexico jobs, handcuff our largest industries, and drive up energy costs for New Mexico’s families. We should be harnessing technology and innovation, not punishing and taxing job creators to death.
Fracking bans have been introduced in Congress by Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren… Where do you stand on the issue?
I am 100% against a fracking ban and will continue to stand by our great American energy producers. In contrast, my opponent voted against a Republican measure that would have discouraged future Presidents from banning fracking.
What is your position on the leasing of federal land for oil, gas and mineral development? Do you agree with the removal of energy development in a 10-mile radius around Chaco archaeological sites? Are there other areas of the state that should be considered for similar treatment?
We need to further streamline the permitting process for leasing federal land for development that will boost our economy. We can have responsible development while also protecting archaeological sites like Chaco Canyon and other historically significant places in our beautiful state.
What are the most important actions Congress should take regarding people now living illegally in the U.S.? What about for those who want to come in?
I do not support a blanket amnesty program. The U.S. has a very clear path to citizenship that has been codified into law. Those seeking to migrate to the U.S. need to go through the legal channels that are in place for that purpose, not come into the country illegally.
Do you believe the borders are secure enough? If not, what do you propose to increase security?
No. I support President Trump’s efforts to finish building the wall. Congress must also provide the necessary equipment, resources and tools to our USBP and ICE agents. And we must enforce the laws that clearly outline legal entry into our nation.
Do you favor a federal ban on the sale of military style semi-automatic rifles? If so, what would you do about the millions of such weapons now legally owned by American citizens? What other, if any, gun law reforms would you support?
No. None, I completely support our 2nd Amendment Right and unlike my opponent, will not support any legislation that impedes our constitutional right to own and bear arms.
12. Federal spending plays an important role in New Mexico’s economy. What should be done to increase other economic drivers here?
In order to increase economic drivers, we need to start with fixing our education system, reducing crime, lowering poverty levels, reducing the delay in licensing and regulatory processes. We must provide new and existing businesses the service and support they need to expand in or relocate to New Mexico.
Congress passed the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement as a replacement for the North American Free Trade Agreement. Are there any other trade initiatives you’d like to see Congress pass if you’re elected?
I would favor any new trade agreements which, like the USMCA, expanded markets for American products while leveling the playing field for American workers. Expanding exports of New Mexican goods is a key to strengthening our state’s economy.
Do you favor or oppose a national single payer health system?
Oppose. We need a free-market driven health care system. Consumers should have more options to select physicians, policy plans, premium choices, and coverage limits that work for their families and businesses and keep costs down.
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 am 100% pro-life. I favor these limits and carried legislation in the New Mexico House to ban abortion after 20 weeks. I do not think taxpayer dollars should be used to fund any abortions.
What should be done at the federal level to address the crisis of opioid addiction? Any other drugs?
The Trump administration has been a strong partner with states and localities in combating the opioid crisis, and in Congress I will work to ensure that continues. We also have to secure our borders: far too many illicit drugs continue to pass through every day.
Why do you want to be a member of Congress?
New Mexico is my home. People know me as a principled leader putting their values above politics. With eight years of legislative experience, I want to continue that work in Congress to provide our district with a voice who will accurately represent our values, our culture, and protect the future of our state.
Personal background 1. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been the subject of any state or federal tax liens?
2. Have you ever been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy proceeding?
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.