Justin Alfond, Democrathttp://www.alfondforsenate.comFacebook Twitter
Office Sought: Senator - District 27
Occupation: Small Business Owner
Tulane, Business Administration.
Wife, Rachael. Children, Jacoby and Esther.
Why are you running for office? I’m running for a fourth and final term in the Senate because I care about the people in Maine, and I believe I have the leadership, vision and experience to help them and guide our state. As a small business owner, former director of a non-profit and active community member, I believe it’s crucial for Greater Portland to have a strong voice in the future decisions of our great state.
State Senator, 2008 - Present; Asst. Sen. Minority Leader, 2010 - 2012; Senate President, 2012 - Present
The federal health care law has offered to pay states to expand their Medicaid programs to provide health coverage to low income Mainers. Do you support Medicaid (or MaineCare) expansion?Yes
Increasing access to healthcare gives basic coverage to 70,000 of our friends and neighbors, continues reforming our healthcare system and supports the bottom lines of hospitals/health centers. Both morally and economically, it’s the right thing to do. Every single day we don’t expand Medicaid, Maine is falling behind.
Reform of the state’s public assistance programs has been the focus of debates in the State House and on the campaign trail. Do you believe that the state’s welfare programs are too generous?No
What, if anything, would you change about welfare?Maine’s average TANF benefit is the lowest in New England, and 19th in US. However, we must ensure taxpayer dollars benefit the truly needy, are only spent on essentials (housing, healthcare, education, food) and that programs are temporary and transitional in nature.
Do you support raising the state’s minimum wage from $7.50 an hour?Yes
By how much?I believe the minimum wage should be a living wage that allows workers and their families to not only cover their basic costs, but also have money to spend and save for the future. One of just two times I stepped down from the rostrum as Senate President over the last two years was to speak about increasing Maine’s minimum wage. While I currently support both Mayor Brennan’s $10.68 effort and President Obama’s $10.10 initiative, I support a dynamic process to ensure a sustainable living wage for Maine.
Would you support legalization of marijuana?Yes
Please explain your position on legalization?We should legalize the recreational use of marijuana for adults 21 and older, but we must move forward thoughtfully and build a regulatory structure that works for users, public safety, and patients. Revenue generated should cover the cost of the regulatory system and support a robust drug treatment program, with the balance going to the general fund.