The Race for the Fightin’ Fourth – Part 1

January 29, 2009 by  
Filed under SC Politics

Bob Inglis - Congressman SC-4

Bob Inglis - Congressman SC-4

This is the first segment in a series of interviews for known candidates that are entering the 4th District Congressional Race.  No portion of this article or the following articles in this series represents an endorsement made by Gary Coats or The Conservativist.

I had the privlidge to sit down with Congressman Bob Inglis on Monday, January 26th after his morning campaign event in Spartanburg.  Congressman Inglis was very generous with his time and his answers, allowing me to see deeper inside the mind we have often criticized.

Bob Inglis is a resident of Greenville County’s north side in Traveler’s Rest.  Originally from Bluffton, SC, he ended up in the 4th after attending Duke University and the University of Virginia Law School.  Bob is married to Mary Ann and has 5 children between the ages of 11 and 22.

Upon sitting down with the incumbent from Traveler’s Rest, my mind began racing in a variety of directions as to where to start the interview, so, I began with the obvious question.  Where do we, as Republicans, go from here?

Congressman Inglis stated that Republicans need to begin solving problems.  That is a strength of a Republican, a stregth of our party.  Our problem solving needs to improve the underlying programs already in place.  Inglis also stated that the tone of conservatism needed to remain positive and transformative and not turn to an angry and reactionary mind set.

We have often criticized Inglis on energy, so we took a second to look a little deeper into this policy.  When asked Inglis gave us a rhetorical question:

“What is conservative about spilling my waste on to your property?”

Inglis believes that the strength of free markets will solve our energy problems, with a few addendums.

First of all, he states that there is no accountabilty for emissions that are polutting your property.  If we can find a way to attach a cost to the waste bi-product on coal, nuclear energy immediately becomes a viable and profittable solution.  He stated that coal is cheaper until it is cleaner and the clean coal initiative is a big government program.

I immediately followed by asking if this is where cap-and-trade came into the picture?

Inglis’ response:

“Cap-and-Trade is the largest tax increase in the world.  It will not work.”

So what does Inglis propose?

“Eliminate the payroll tax and replace it with a carbon tax. By eliminating the 12.4% cost of the payroll tax and implementing carbon taxes, the cost to the government would be net neutral. “

Let’s look at it like this.  I would love to keep that 6.2% tax in my paycheck and the companies paying the match would have that money to give to its employee’s, invest in captial projects, create jobs.  Brilliant!  Here is a link to the article here.

And finally, we talked about the bailouts.

The congressman believes that the initial bailout of the banks was necessary.  He believes that the banking system had to remain operational to prevent another depression.  Inglis states:

“I could not be the next Herbert Hoover.”

He goes on to further state that we, the people are at fault for this as well.  We have been living on borrowed money and not saving has hurt the people.  We were encouraged by former President Bush after 9/11 to spend.

On the auto bailout, he points to Greer, SC and BMW.  He said a bailout to the big 3 would not solve the problem.  They must change the way they do business, and that means working with UAW to change that model.  BMW has proved that it is possible to build cars for a profit in Greer, SC.

On President Obama’s stimulus package.  He said he would be voting against it.  There was very little stimulus and many long term project and government programs that expanded the size of the government.

Inglis impressed me the other day.  In the 30-45 minutes that we talked, I saw a side of Inglis I hadn’t seen before.  It was a very personable and logical individual and he took the time to explain why.  He doesn’t always get to do that in town hall meetings with out being chastised.  If he can do that throughout the campaign season, he may be able to turn some of the neigh sayers in his favor.

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  • Greenville_GOP

    I enjoyed reading your interview with Congressman Inglis. However I would have liked to have seen his responses to other issues that many rank-and-file Republicans disagree with him on. Besides his first vote for the bailout and his “Al Gore-esque” energy philosophies like the carbon tax which both came up in your interview, our Congressman was also one of only 16 Republicans to vote against the Iraq Troop Surge and said that h did not think our troops could turn things around in Iraq. Unlike Senator DeMint, Rep. Inglis has not sworn off earmarks in the budget process and also has used hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars on wasteful junkets – like going to the Galapagos Islands to study the effects of zooplankton on ocean ecosystems. I wish you would also ask Inglis why he has garnered the reputation in some conservative circles as being one of the softest-on-crime Republicans in Congress given that he wants to repeal mandatory minimums for drug offenders.

    At a time when conservative leaders like Jim DeMint and Mike Pence are stepping up to the plate, Bob Inglis is sorely behind th pack. He is not the type of Republican you would expect to be representing one of the most conservative districts in the nation. Everything I have heard is that there are at least one or two very prominent Republicans in Greenville who are going to mount serious challenges against Inglis in 2010, with at least one being able to self-fund his campaign.

    • admin

      I honestly ran out of time to talk about all the issues. I had about 20-30 minutes for the interview before he had to leave for another meeting. I am sure these issues will come up during the campaign.

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  • Ilene Lollis

    The payroll tax that he is refering to is the social security program. This would eliminate the social scecurity that is needed for the poor uneducated people of our society, who work almaost all of their life. They would no longer be able to retire. They would have to work until the day they die.