- Name: Anthony W. Williams
- Position sought: Illinois Second Congressional District Representative
- Website: voteanthonywwilliams.com
- Email: anthony@VoteAnthonyWWilliams.com
- Age: 58
- Family: Anthony has a beautiful wife of 22 years, Vivienne, five children Tanisha, Yvette, Nehemiah, Sharron and Solomon, and two grandchildren, Keonte and Alan, Jr.
- Education: Bishop College (Bachelor's), 1979
Lutheran School of Theology (Master's), 1990
- Occupation: Lutheran Pastor
- Political Party: Democrat
- Official name of campaign: Anthony W. Williams for Congress
- Previous Elected or Appointed Offices: None
Is there any additional experience you believe qualifies you for the position?
I have been a public servant for over 20 years. I've been helping people and getting things done for years - not to get a pay check, but because it was the right thing to do. I have been the voice of people in the middle of their crisis and have produced results. I assisted Rocky Clark, the former high school football player who was injured during a game and became paralyzed. The state wanted to end his insurance, however, I stepped in to fight for that young man and got the state to continue his insurance. When the state tampered with the pension checks of some of the seniors in Robbins, I lead the fight to get their monies reimbursed; the publicity caused others – 40,000+ others – to speak up that they too had their pensions tampered with. Forty thousand constituents and not one public official (including those running for the 2nd Congressional District of Illinois) stepped in to say a word and speak on the behave of the pensioners in our community. This, along with my views on the proposed Peotone airport, is what sets me apart from my opponents. I encourage you to visit my website at www.VoteAnthonyWWilliams.com to see more of my works in the community.
What would your priorities be if elected to this office?
- Protecting Our Pensions and Social Security
- Violence In Our Community
- Support of our Veterans
- Shutting down the Peotone Airport project and the Illiana Expressway
- Expungement for non-violent felons
- Emergency Disaster Relief Centers
- Fight to reduce debt of student loans and to get better terms in the future
- Promote Head Start to help with the advancement of our children
- Work on a moratorium against foreclosures
Which of Jackson's 2nd District plans do you agree with and plan to continue?
I agree with Jackson’s proposed Economy and Jobs plan to bring millions of dollars to the district to retain well-paying jobs at hospitals, for first responders and for educators at local colleges. I am definitely for the redevelopment of the U.S. Steel site in the 7th Ward as that would produce many jobs. Our former congressman also funded a new nurse training program in Chicago Heights that I would continue. I would also continue his fight for education funding that would include Head Start.
How do you define a small business, and what can government do to support them that isn't being done?
When I think of small business, I think Ma and Pa Shops, businesses making less than $1 million in net sales. The government provides a number of resources for small businesses, I think they can do a better job of informing small business owners of what those resources are.
What steps would you take to reduce the federal deficit? If it includes tax increases, what taxes? And if it involves federal service cuts, which?
First and foremost, any cuts that affect the American people should also affect the politicians. If there are cuts to Social Security and Medicare, then equal cuts should be made to the pensions of the politicians. Social Security was initially set up as a "retirement program"; how can you tamper with someone's retirement fund? Paul Ryan and other republicans would like to increase defense spending by $2 trillion more than the Pentagon has requested without saying what they'll spend the money on, I would object to that and allocate that money to an area(s) where it is more needed. There are state lotteries, there can also be a federal lottery. Instead of the proceeds going to education – which is an excellent use on the state level – it can go towards the federal deficit.
What should the government do to create more jobs?
The government can promote entrepreneurship and offer tax incentives to NEW SMALL business owners for their first 2 years in business. The government can remove all tax incentives that corporations get when relocating their companies overseas and bring back all jobs related to American infrastructure. As a matter of national security, all projects having to do with infrastructure must be handled here on American soil.
Should the federal government set different measurements than now for economically disadvantaged students, special education students, students learning English as a second language, etc?
No, we need to help this students to reach the levels at which they should be. We can do this by starting our children earlier than kindergarten, requiring that they start in a Head Start program. Studies have shown that Head Start students score higher in numeracy, language, literacy, social conduct, and physical development.
Should federal immigration policy be changed. If so, how?
The policy can remain the same, however, it needs to be enforced.
What are your philosophies on social issues such as same-sex marriage, abortion and medicinal marijuana and what should government’s role be in those issues?
Personally I am against same sex marriage however I am for protecting civil liberties. I have heard people say they want same sex marriages to be able to benefit from the same rights as opposite sex married couples. For example, if a child has 2 mothers or 2 fathers, in an emergency only one would be recognized. That is what needs to be addressed, civil unions should allow for those types of rights – and these rights should all be handled on a state level.
Although I am pro-life, I don't have the right to take a women's decision from her. Just as there should be equal pay for women, there should also be equal rights for women, as it is for men to make their own decisions. The only government input there should be in regards to abortions is regulations for safety.
I would support the removal of marijuana from Schedule 1 of the controlled substance act, with the stipulation that it is ONLY naturally grown marijuana, not chemically enhanced or genetically altered marijuana. In addition to legalizing a multi-billion dollar industry, it would provide the government with a new stream of tax income that would help to reduce the deficit.
What should minimum wage be in Illinois and through what method should increases be determined?
At present, the minimum wage must stand in an effort to keep the unemployment rate from further increasing. What the people need is not a minimum wage, but a livable wage. A livable wage is consistent with the cost of living in a particular area; if rent/housing cost and grocery cost go up by 10%, then the livable wage should increase accordingly.
Bi-partisanship is often mentioned by congressional members. Tell us how you would work with members of the opposite party?
I would work with members of the opposite party by finding common ground that would enable me to be best serve the constituents and the nation as a whole.
How do you feel about the level of financial transparency as it relates to political campaigns?
I think the level of financial transparency needs to remain high so that everyone knows exactly where donations are coming from; what individual or corporation. With that being said, if the candidate wins, and suddenly XYZ Corporation gets a $14 million contract, we can ask, was that donation a bribe or are they really the best company for the job. Because companies must bid on government contracts, if they are in fact the most qualified, then their paperwork would prove it.
Have you ever been convicted of a felony, been sued successfully or had a restraining order placed against you? If so, please explain.
No, I have not.