The Missouri Times: So, why are you running?
Jason Crowell: I’m running because our current leadership in Washington DC has failed. Obamacare will be a disaster, deficits are skyrocketing, small business has no certainty, individual rights are being tossed away by the very people who are supposed to protect the public and the. I’m sick of watching the federal government take our property, turn it into a federal park and then not allow us to use it. The only thing they want to do is raise taxes and take more of our money and pass more regulations and laws. I’m running because even some Republicans have joined in promoting a bigger government and I want stand up stop government growth. I’ve said before we have to stop spending, stop spending and stop spending!
TMT: Walk us through how you became a conservative. How did you come to that ideology?
Crowell: When I received my first paycheck at 14 years of age and it was smaller than I thought it was supposed to be, and some guy named FICA had taken a bunch of my money. I asked my Dad about it and he explained how the government takes from some of us and gives to others. My dad had instilled a strong work ethic in me and he taught me the value of a dollar. It all hit home when I got that first paycheck. As I grew older I was inspired by Ronald Regan. President Regan had an ability to communicate what commonsense conservative values were and he put them into action.
TMT: Who is someone in Congress that you’d like to pattern yourself after?
Crowell: I don’t really know any congressmen. I like Paul Ryan, but I don’t agree with his fiscal cliff, extending the debt limit, and TARP votes. I also like the reports on Senator Rand Paul from Kentucky and Senator Ted Cruise from Texas. I like how they had the courage to vote against the fiscal cliff and extending the debt limit. They stuck with their principles and didn’t just do what was popular.
TMT: How do you think your ideology will fit with [Speaker] John Boehner?
Crowell: On the major fiscal issues of the day I would have been against him. I would have voted no on TARP, cash for clunkers, extending the debt limit, fiscal cliff and the bailout. I think we have a spending problem and while the Speaker and I probably agree on Second Amendment and pro-life issues, I clearly have a different opinion about government spending.
TMT: Was there anything during her time that you were supportive of?
Crowell: Constituent services. Jo Ann cared about our district and she always made taking care of the citizens concerns a top priority. If I am elected that will be my highest priority. I learned as a State Representative and Senator that, unfortunately, sometimes citizens need an elected official who will help them deal with burdensome rules and regulations. Too many times bureaucrats ignore or even push citizens around and a congressman can step in and be their advocate. I will be that kind of congressman.
TMT: You’ve been tagged as being against everything. Was that your goal when elected?
Crowell: No. My goal was to remake a state government that had seen 50 years of democrat control with the last 8 of those years lead by Governor Carnahan, who exploded the size and scope of Missouri government. We showed the conservative way of cutting taxes, controlling spending and reforming government programs worked. I have been for many, many issues. I was for protecting our gun rights and allowing citizens to conceal and carry. I was for protecting innocent life. I was for the constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman. Now the last few years I have been frustrated that even some republicans want to turn back the clock and grow government so yes, just as I did under the democrats I have been against expanding programs and increasing spending. If that tags me as being against everything thing so be it, but I have never been against making sure our tax dollars are spent wisely.
TMT: What would you do as a freshman congressman to cut spending?
Crowell: I would not vote to expand the debt ceiling. I would also oppose any tax increases. I realize a new congressman doesn’t control everything, but I would work with other likeminded conservatives to build a coalition that would hopefully stop any bill to raise the debt ceiling. Stopping that would force [President] Obama to stop spending.
TMT: Did you know about [Congresswoman] Jo Ann Emerson’s resignation in advance?
TMT: Can Jason Crowell, from Cape Girardeau, keep the western side of this district happy? How?
Crowell: Yes. I have traveled from Zalma to Ava and all places in between and I have made personal friendships all along the way. I grew up in southern Missouri and I live in southern Missouri and I will continue to live in southern Missouri. As Congressman I will continue to travel from Ava to Zalma and everywhere in between.
TMT: What’s something that people might not know about you?
Crowell: After 12 years in office, I think everything about me has been written, but I’m left handed and color blind.