David Perdue (R)

Q1: Name:

David Perdue

Q2: Currently in Georgia, and around the Nation, there is a shortage of talent to fill open technology positions. TAG feels part of this issue is due to current H1B Visa policies that hinder highly educated foreign students from staying within the United States to work. What is your position on H1B Visas as well as border protection and illegal immigration? Would you be willing to address the H1B visa issue as a standalone issue in congress?

First and foremost we must secure our border. It is critical for our national security. However, as a member of the Georgia Tech Foundation Board, I understand that our current immigration laws are hindering our ability to keep talented individuals who are educated in our country living and working in the United States. I support an improved, streamlined and expanded H1B visa program as economic development tool. H1B visas should be addressed as a standalone issue that doesn’t get caught up in the debate over comprehensive immigration reform.

Q3: Ensuring students have a 21st century digital infrastructure with access to broadband internet, and fourth generation (4G) wireless networks has become a critical issue nationally. How do you feel congress can address this access issue? Do you feel the federal and state government can work together to bring access to Georgia’s students?

I believe that free market providers are competing vigorously for customers and acting to meet the consumers’ broadband internet needs. As far as the federal government’s role, I believe that any existing DOE funding should be sent to the state and/or local level with the maximum flexibility. Locals should be allowed to determine the priority school districts and individual schools for investment, including broadband internet access.

Q4: Cybersecurity has become an issue not only for consumers (i.e. Target’s recent data breach) but also for small and medium sized companies. Do you feel there should be a blanket approach to setting regulations regarding cybersecurity? Should companies be held accountable for the information they lose? How can our government assist in protecting consumers and business owners from these types of security breaches?

I support minimum standards passed by Congress, not just an executive agency. Individual companies should aggressively act to protect consumer information, and there is already accountability, which can be enhanced if necessary. The rules should be clear and contracts between a company and its customers should be fully enforceable.

Q5: STEM education has become an important part of Georgia schools and is crucial in filling US jobs. As a nation, the United States has dropped in the STEM rankings among other nations. How can we better prepare STEM students for the 21st century work force? How can congress assist schools in the implementation of STEM? What ideas do you have to make STEM a priority nationally?

I understand the importance of STEM education and attribute much of my problem-solving ability as a CEO to my engineering studies while at Georgia Tech. Generally speaking, I believe that we should take more resources out of the hands of Washington education bureaucrats and invest that money at the local level where true innovation happens. Additionally, government should encourage the continued creation of specialized charter schools instead of making it more difficult to organize and operate them.

Q6: The House of Representatives passed a bill addressing patent reform (The Innovation Act HB3309, which was overwhelmingly bipartisan with a 325 yea-vote and 91 no-vote count), and the issue of patent trolling. Currently, the bill resides in the Senate. If this legislation is not passed during 2014, what steps will you take to insure this legislation continues to move through the process?

I am doing my part to change the composition of the United States Senate and build a working majority that focuses on common sense pro-economic growth legislation. I’m not interested in playing political games; I want to get things done.

Q7: What ways do you feel our government and, you specifically, can encourage entrepreneurs and the entrepreneurial spirit in America? President Obama stated “We should be making it easier and faster to turn new ideas into new jobs and new businesses. And we should knock down any barriers that stand in the way. Because if we’re going to create jobs now and in the future, we’re going to have to out-build and out-educate and out-innovate every other country on Earth.” After reading this statement, what reactions do you have to his ideas on assisting entrepreneurs?

I would suggest the President heed his own advice. Right now his Administration and the Democrat-controlled Senate are doing everything they can to hinder entrepreneurs and job creators. As the former CEO of the Reebok athletic brand and Dollar General stores as well as a current small business owner myself, I actually know what it is like to compete in the private sector. We must get rid of the overreaching government policies and regulations that burden job creators. Also, we need comprehensive tax reform along with the full repeal of Dodd-Frank in order to free up capital investment.

Q8: If elected, how will you work to balance our nation’s budget? Will you support innovation and technology within the budget?

I'm running for US Senate because career politicians in Washington have created a full-blown financial crisis. Due to years of overspending and bad government policies, we have crushing federal debt and struggling economy. Based on my 41 years of business experience, I believe I am uniquely qualified to help get our nation’s finances in order and our economy back on track. We should start by repealing Obamacare and cutting the $250+ billion in redundant federal agencies and programs. Ultimately, we will have to grow our way out of the hole that politicians dug for us. If not, we will be incapable of funding our true priorities.

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