Jack Hughes-Hageman

Candidate Jack Hughes-Hageman

Editors note: This is the third instillation in a series of Q&A with the candidates.

Jack Hughes-Hageman, age 26, is throwing his hat into the ring for the highly-contended 8th district congressional seat currently held by Republican Dave Reichert. A Sammamish resident, Hughes-Hageman is the youngest candidate in the field. He is a graduate of the University of Alaska-Fairbanks and lists his occupation as an entrepreneur, among other things. He identifies as a Republican.

The following are his responses to a questionnaire provided by the Daily Record.

What should be the next step for the Yakima Basin Integrated Water Management Plan in Congress? Will you support funding for the plan?

The next step for the Yakima Basin Water Plan is to ensure bipartisan support before it ever gets to the floor. In today’s highly charged political atmosphere we cannot risk losing the funding to partisanship, we need real leadership in Congress to make sure the Yakima Basin Plan gets what it needs. The lack of proper water management is leading to increasing wildfires and stalled construction.

I absolutely support funding the Yakima Basin Integrated Water Management Plan. I will fight tirelessly in congress to make certain the Yakima Valley does not go dry while we wait for both parties to agree. Real compromise ahead of time will ensure swift passage through both houses of congress. Wildfires are one of my most important issues and water management is one of the most essential functions of fire prevention.

What are your priorities for Kittitas County?

My priorities for Kittitas County are:

n Federal wildfire reform — overhaul and double down on wildfire prevention, management, and recovery to better serve our communities.

n Promoting tourism and agriculture — Tourism is easily the largest growing sector of Kittitas County’s economy. Timothy hay and other agriproducts account for millions in exports and are equally as responsible for bringing outside dollars into our communities. I grew up working in farms and hotels in a rural community, and know it takes hard work to make the magic happen. We need a strong advocate for these industries who has first-hand knowledge with these industries.

What can Congress do to address forest health and reduce the effect of wildfires?

Our Congress needs to enact legislation funding wildfire prevention and emergency management services for affected communities. There needs to be a cohesive wildfire fighting force separate from the federal forestry service to allow immediate federal response on the military and civilian levels. We have the resources to protect these communities, it is about time we removed the miles of red tape it takes to attack fires when they start. Fires are like cancer; allow them to spread and it can be fatal, catch it early and you have a real chance to save lives. Let us give our brave and hard-working firefighters the kind of federal capability to take out these fires before they begin. Firefighting is not rocket science, it is a lot of hard work. We must get Congress to give these brave men and women the resources they need to be successful, because their success means saving American lives.

If elected, what will be your approach to immigration issues in Congress? What will be your priorities?

On the Statue of Liberty, it reads:

“Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me”

I believe Emma Lazarus said all that needs to be said about immigration. We have a legacy of salvation to uphold, and I intend to keep it.

I am also a strong advocate for the preservation and protection of Medicare, veteran’s right’s, and assistance for the elderly.

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