U.S House, District 4: Paul Gosar touts his track record, pushes for deregulation

Paul Gosar has represented Arizona’s 4th Congressional District in Congress since 2011. He’s in a battle for re-election with Democratic challenger David Brill. (Photo courtesy of Paul Gosar)

Name: Paul Gosar
Political party: Republican
Position sought: U.S. House of Representatives, District 4
City of residence: Prescott
Current office: U.S. representative, 4th Congressional District

What is the greatest issue Arizona residents face? If elected, how would you address this issue?

It’s the economy, Gosar said.

Gosar said he believes accelerating the economy will solve most of the problems in the state, and the way to do that is through deregulation – an aspect of his four terms in Congress that makes him proud.

“What we’ve done is try to eliminate some of the burdensome duplicities of rules and regulations,” he said. “We’ve been very good at that.”

Gosar also takes a firm stance on the role of government in relation to the economy.

“Government is not here to create jobs,” Gosar said. “They do create some jobs, like the military and stuff like that, but they’re here to create a fair playing field so that enterprises can play in a fair system.”

The congressman said that doesn’t mean everyone will have equal success, but focusing on what he considers a leveling of the playing field will create more opportunities and higher wages.

What other issues are important to you and your campaign?

Gosar said the current state of the federal health care system is a concern.

“We have looked at revamping our health care system so that it’s patient-friendly, patient-focused and patient-centric,” Gosar said.

The congressman likened the insurance industry to a monopoly that has stymied competition. Breaking them up, Gosar said, would lead to lower premiums, lower costs of pharmaceuticals and premiums, more options and added incentives for doctors.

Gosar said he’s also focused on use of natural resources and public lands, as well as funding education.

What in your past work, political or volunteer experience makes you a better choice to hold this office?

“My track record,” Gosar said. “I’m one of the most accomplished members of Congress at getting things done.”

Gosar pointed to water settlements, land exchanges and health care ideas as examples of his track record, and he cited his background as a dentist in helping him politically.

“My health care background allows me to listen to the public telling us what the problem is and then listening to the solution,” Gosar said. “Because most of those people actually have a solution – you just have to refine it.”

What is a personal challenge you feel you need to overcome?

Gosar, 59, said work-life balance has always been hard to calibrate. A self-described workaholic, Gosar said spending time with his family while still putting in the work required of public office can be a challenge.

“A lot of my kids are grown, but that doesn’t mean you should put it off,” said Gosar, a husband and father of three. “You’ve got to have that conversation. You’ve got to have that touch. You have to experience and spend time with them.”

Please share a quote or advice that guides you.

Gosar quoted former Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis.

“In a government of laws, the existence of the government will be imperiled if it fails to observe the law scrupulously. … If the government becomes a lawbreaker, it breeds contempt for the law; it invites every man to become a law unto himself; it invites anarchy.”

What app on your phone could you not live without?

“Because I travel so much, my biggest app is my Maps app,” Gosar said. “I couldn’t live without that. Even though Siri is wrong a few times here and there, particularly out in rural Arizona.”

Is there anything you would like to add?

Gosar said he chose the Brandeis quote because we’re a nation of laws.

Laws, he pointed out, that are deliberated on, implemented and amended if needed. It’s that process, and what he said it once represented, that built America.

“The reason we became the great country called the United States of America is because we had equal application of the law to everyone,” he said. “No one was below, everyone was under the same roof. No one was above it. … We have to get back to our roots of equal application of justice to everyone.”

Campaign website for Paul Gosar.

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