This is interview #4 in JohnsonForAmerica.com’s “Important Voices” series, where we talk with key figures, such as elected officials, candidates, authors, commentators, and policy experts, about the issues of the day. A new interview is released every Monday and every Thursday, so check back often!
Our guest for today’s Important Voices interview is Terri McCormick. She’s a Republican candidate for US Congress in Wisconsin’s 8th district. Terri is a public policy and leadership innovator. She is the President of the McCormick Dawson CPG, Ltd., a marketing and public relations firm. She served as State Representative in the Wisconsin State Legislature from 2001 to 2007. Prior to being elected to the Wisconsin Legislature, Terri founded Wisconsin’s charter school laws. Her public policy work has won numerous state and national awards, as well as numerous other recognitions for her pioneering work in the state’s first competitive prescription drug purchasing pool. The prescription drug purchasing pool expanded opportunities for individuals with senior care and saved taxpayers millions of dollars annually. Terri was the U.S. Delegate to the International Peace Institute at Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree, magna cum Laude, Political Science and European Studies, from the University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh, as well as a Master’s Degree in Administrative Leadership, highest honors, from Marian University in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. Additional Terri McCormick holds an Education Certificate from Lawrence University, Appleton, WI, as well as credentials in graduate work in political theory at the University of Windsor in Windsor, Ontario. Terri currently resides in Appleton.
Josiah Schmidt: What compelled you to enter elective politics?
Terri McCormick: I am running for the Eighth Congressional District in Wisconsin because our country needs a solution-focused leader with principles and integrity. My passion in life is to make a difference for the people around me – my neighbors and community. My track record as a legislator, small business owner, and teacher empowers me the know how to get the job done. There are a lot of individuals who say things and promise things come election time. It is quite different to actually have a track record of success that points to integrity leadership and putting people first. At this time in our history it is critical that we elect individuals who will do as they promise and have the experience and know how to slice through the bureaucracy, red tape, and corruption that has caused the crisis we face in our economy, jobs, and banking system.
Josiah Schmidt: What are some of the most important issues to Wisconsinites right now?
Terri McCormick: There are two overriding issues that must be addressed from an economic security standpoint; First is the condition of our economy. It is heartbreaking to see the loss of jobs and healthcare and the effect this has had at the expense of families across our state. The reports of bankruptcy, foreclosure and families living on food stamps alone paint a picture of despair. Secondly, the monetary policies that have led to an unfair tax system as well as financial instability in the investment market must be addressed as well. An overgrown bureaucracy, overspending and lack of accountable fiscal policy leadership has stifled entrepreneurship and with it, job growth. I will fight to get the government off the backs of the people of Wisconsin, so that we can get our state and nation working again.
Josiah Schmidt: How did you come to hold such a liberty-oriented philosophy?
Terri McCormick: I have been taught as a child the sanctity of the words: “We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights of; life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” As children we were asked to recite the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. We were instructed that the Constitution was our contract with the government as a free people.
Later I studied James Madison and the philosophies and works that he used to author the United States Constitution. Madison has been the most influential founding father in my life as his mentor in envisioning the checks and balances within the United States Constitution, Aristotle. As a Scotch-Irish American, we were raised to respect the ‘right of freedom.’ And as a daughter, grand daughter, and great grand daughter of veterans … I know the price of freedom all too well.
Josiah Schmidt: What do you offer that your opponents do not?
Terri McCormick: Too often political promises become the byproduct of wanting to be in office, rather than represent the people who elect us. I believe in citizen leaders who bring to office a life time of experience and expertise in the private sector. My background also includes a record of reform that has impacted the jobs expansion in the state of Wisconsin. Bills authored and passed, like: the Small Business Regulation Reform, The Competitive Prescription Drug Purchasing Pool, and the first Charter School Law – written when I was in the private sector as the First Wisconsin Charter School President for the State of Wisconsin.
Josiah Schmidt: What’s the first thing you’ll do when you get into Congress?
Terri McCormick: Study, listen and work hard! I will work each and everyday to serve the people of the Eighth Congressional District in Congress. I will begin by building coalitions to enact an agenda that will do three basic things:
- Enact a commission similar to the Grace Commission under President Ronald Reagan that would address waste, corruption, and inefficiency in government.
- Take a look at congressional benefits and make sure they are more closely aligned with the private sector; the Congress needs to learn to model the actions of which it speaks.
- We need to put the people of the U.S. first and foremost before a ‘political class’ of government employees by enacting term limits on the Congress.
Josiah Schmidt: What will you do as a US Congresswoman to help create more jobs in Wisconsin?
Terri McCormick: Fostering a climate where jobs can be created is my number one priority, because my neighbors here in Wisconsin are suffering high unemployment and one of the most unfriendly business climates in the country. When government is limited, the free market has an opportunity to reward innovation and ingenuity. I will keep my no tax increases pledge by looking for waste, fraud and ineffective practices in government. Government can be run like a business – we just need to replace ‘business as usual’ politics. When government isn’t taking money from the people in our country, small businesses and entrepreneurs will have the capital to reinvest into the economy to create jobs. (85-90% of all new jobs are created by small businesses.)
Josiah Schmidt: As a US Congresswoman, what will you do to help relieve the burden on small business owners in Wisconsin?
Terri McCormick: As a member of the National Federation of Independent Business, I plan to use my office as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives to cut through the bureaucracy and red tape that over-bearing government regulation causes. For example, the Small Business Regulation Reform Act that I authored in the Wisconsin State Legislature requires that all bills proposed must be accompanied by an “economic impact statement” on businesses that are affected by the proposed bill. Imagine how many needless laws and regulations would be placed on the business community that ‘grows jobs’ if lawmakers were required to first judge the impact their laws had on businesses and jobs! I will work to expand the Small Business Regulation Reform Act to the federal level to increase accountability and help small businesses grow in Wisconsin and elsewhere across the nation.
Josiah Schmidt: What do you know about Gary Johnson?
Terri McCormick: Gary Johnson was a great Governor in New Mexico, who vetoed many spending bills that would have increased government scope. Gary Johnson stands up for individual liberty and limited government. Governor Johnson has put forth a vision through his Our America Initiative that places individual responsibility and limited government ahead of government control and bureaucracy.
Josiah Schmidt: Anything else you’d like to say to our readers?
Terri McCormick: Thank you for the opportunity to respond to your questions. Ron Paul and Gary Johnson supporters should look into this campaign in the Wisconsin Eighth district. It’s a conservative, independent-minded place where people have common sense and strong views. Your support will be needed to win my eight-way primary and general elections.
Josiah Schmidt: Where can people go to find out more about you and contribute to your campaign?
Josiah Schmidt: Thanks so much for joining us, Terri, and the best of luck to you with your campaign!