Philly For Change Endorsement Questionnaire: State Senator Larry Farnese (1st district)
Philly for Change Questionnaire 2012
1. If elected, what will be your top three priorities, and how will you achieve them?
Economic Development, Safety, stopping the Republican attack on women and education. I will continue to work on the Southport project and other economic development programs to bring as many jobs as possible to Philadelphia. I will continue the fight to bring sensible gun laws to our State, and I will continue to bring to light the actions of the Republican controlled legislator and Governor and work with my colleagues to stop as much of this administration's current anti-women and anti-philly legislation as possible. Including the current Voter ID and Ultrasound bills.
2. What steps will you take to create jobs and raise Philadelphians out of poverty?
I have been very proud of my work on the Southport project, but it will need to continue to be monitored and pushed until completion. This could literally create thousands of jobs and I see it as one of the best and most major projects that could have a large scale impact on our city. Directly increasing the number of jobs, as well as the other economic impacts associated with a more active and utilized port and shipping facilities should mean a family supporting wage for many more Philadelphians.
3. What steps will you take to improve Philadelphia’s public schools and our ability to provide a quality education for every child?
Unfortunately State has taken much of the control away from Philadelphia over its own school system. The current Governor and Republican controlled legislature do not agree with many of our local legislators that to raise the quality of education, retain and attract great teachers and to make our schools safe we cannot continue to cut an already underfunded system. Compare the dollars-per-student we have in Philadelphia compared to many of our neighbors. I will continue to fight to stop further cuts and to get funding to the levels they need to be at to truly fix the issues our educational system is facing.
4. What steps will you take to ensure women have access to safe legal abortions and emergency contraception? What will you do to protect women from state-mandated vaginal ultrasounds and other ridiculously invasive punitive procedures?
I have fought hard against the ultrasound bill and will continue to do so. I authored a companion bill, with the purpose of bringing the level of ridiculousness to light, that would require men seeking erectile dysfunction medication to undergo similar invasive procedures. Since the media attention on my bill a large number of sponsors to the ultrasound bill have dropped off. I will not stop until all sponsors have dropped off the bill and this attack on women's health has ended.
5. What steps will you take to promote marriage equality for the LBGT community?
I introduced the senate counterpart to HB 300 the anti discrimination bill, and am one of only 3 sponsors of gay marriage bill. I will continue to propose legislation and educate my colleagues on the importance of these issues.
6. In light of Pennsylvania's expanded natural gas drilling, what steps do you support for protecting Philadelphia’s water and the Delaware River Basin?
I support the stringent regulation and inspection of these drilling sites and the proper funding of the agencies tasked to monitor them. I also support taxing this industry to pay for these necessary precautions.
7. Do you pledge to forswear voter suppression as an electoral tactic and combat it if elected?