David Rouzer, a native of Johnston County and former State Senator, is battling Woody White, also a former State Senator and current county commission chair, for the Republican nomination in North Carolina’s 7th Congressional District.
It’s a seat that U.S. Representative Mike McIntyre, a Democrat, has held since 1997. The only Democrat seeking the seat is New Hanover County Commissioner Jonathan Barfield.
In 2012, Rouzer came within a few hundred votes of unseating McIntyre. And, as he tells WHQR’s Rachel Lewis Hilburn, he’s running this time to stop what he calls the continuing intrusion of government on individual freedoms.
RLH: You talk about the founding principles, this trend toward socialism. Specifically, how is that manifesting itself right now?
DR: Well, it’s manifesting itself in the form of Obamacare, socialized medicine. Once the government has control of your healthcare, they control everything that you do. When the government has control of your healthcare, they can control every action and dictate every component of the economy as well because it’s such a huge aspect of our economic life.
RLH: Providing you’re successful in repealing Obamacare. What then?
DR: There are issues in health care that need to be resolved. The accessibility and the cost of health insurance are issues that do need to be tackled. And the way you tackle them is create more transparency, more competition in that healthcare market. That helps to drive down costs…
You have tort reform across the board, too. In fact, I helped to lead charge on medical malpractice reform in the state legislature – which has been a great benefit to the healthcare industry in this state. And I plan to do the same thing at the federal level.
RLH: In what other specific ways do you see the federal government as curtailing individual liberty?
DR: In addition to healthcare, you’ve got all the rules and regulations being promulgated by the Environmental Protection Agency. You’ve got all kinds of rules and regulations coming out of every facet of the federal government under this president and this administration.
RLH: You’ve talked also about cutting spending. Where would you start?
DR: There’s not one bureaucracy out there that I’m afraid to cut. In fact, we need to cut them all and a lot of that money we could send back to the states so they could have more money to give their teachers a raise. So they could have more money to deal with Medicaid shortfalls and so forth.
RLH: You mentioned the EPA as one of the bureaucracies that you see as burdensome. What are some of the other bureaucracies that you’d really like to go after?
DR: Well, all of them across the board. You’ve got the Department of Energy. You’ve got the EPA. You’ve got the Department of Agriculture. All those agencies full of fluff these days because there’s never been any cuts in spending.
RLH: Didn’t you work for the Department of Agriculture at one point?
DR: I did. That’s why I know all this stuff so well, which is a great advantage for me in this race because I’ve been through those legislative battles. I know how this works. I’ve been in the executive branch. I know how the bureaucrats operate. The only way we’re going to get the federal government under control is to cut the spending.
RLH: Several weeks ago, we aired an interview with your opponent in the Republican primary, Woody White. And he said, referring to you:
“He’s led a public life in Washington, for the most part, lobbying for things like amnesty for illegal immigrants and the 2006 bill that he lobbied on behalf of a client to benefit China.”
You take issue with the truth of that statement.
DR: I take issue with all of it. In fact, I read that and I thought to myself, ‘you know, even Nancy Pelosi’s crowd didn’t misrepresent the truth that bad.’
I have no idea where this issue of china in 2006 comes from. In 2006, in fact, I was working for USDA Rural Development. [laughter] And I have never done any work for China – period. Ever.
RLH: What does it mean to promote liberty around the world and economic empowerment for some of these nations? What does that mean in practice?
DR: Well, in practice, you’re talking about hope and opportunity for billions of people. And if you take America off world timeline and tyranny dominates, nobody has economic freedom. Nobody has individual liberty. Nobody has the opportunity to prosper and succeed and develop their God-given talents.
RLH: David Rouzer, thanks for joining us today.
DR: Thank you.
David Rouzer beat Ilario Pantano for the Republican nomination in 2012, but he lost the November election by less than 700 votes to incumbent Mike McIntyre.
During the campaign two years ago and now in 2014, Rouzer is defending his stance on what opponents call his support of “amnesty for illegal immigrants”. But his critics don’t understand two fundamental truths about illegal immigration, says Rouzer. Truth number one: agriculture is a gateway.
“You take the other fundamental truth that we either import food or import labor. And I’m quite honestly much more in favor of importing the labor than I am importing the food for economic reasons and also national security reasons – particularly in this age of terrorism. You talk about – you know 9/11 was bad enough. But you wait ‘til our food supply is tainted. And everybody around this country is sick.”
But he doesn’t support granting citizenship to those who come here illegally.
“What I am for is a system to be put in place so that employers can get the labor they need when they need it. I know a lot of conservatives out there. I’m a conservative myself, and I believe in the free enterprise system. And if you’re going to believe in free enterprise, which is the free movement of goods and services in a competitive marketplace, you’ve got to believe in the free movement of labor to produce those goods and services, as well.”
The primary election takes place May 6th. The deadline to register to vote is April 11th.