Following Kathleen Rice’s announcement last Wednesday that she will run for the 4th Congressional District seat now held by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, the Nassau County district attorney took time out of her schedule to field questions from the Herald about her candidacy.
For the full story on Rice's candidacy, click the link here.
Herald: In a campaign email, you touched on the importance of "quality schools," "decent jobs" and the problem of gun violence. Is it fair to say that education, jobs and gun violence are three of the top issues you want to focus on in Congress? What are other issues?
Rice: Nothing is more important to me than helping someone get a job, send their kid to a good school and live in a safe neighborhood. I’ve been an advocate for my community my entire career, and whether it’s these issues or helping families who are still rebuilding after Sandy, when I go to Washington, I am going to go there to build consensus and get something done.
Herald: How would you improve the education system, create jobs and reduce gun violence?
Rice: There is a lot of common ground we can find to help small businesses survive and grow, to quicken the Sandy recovery process and to help families avoid the tragedies of gun violence. We’re going to have big ideas on these issues in the coming months.
Herald: The NRA and its influence on Congress have acted as roadblocks to the passage of more effective gun control laws. How do you propose to deal with the gun lobby?
Rice: It will be a two-pronged effort. We’re going to be fierce in highlighting the devastation caused by illegal guns in urban, suburban and rural communities every day, and I’m also going to try and work with the other side on things like mental-health funding and background checks so that we can keep guns out of the hands of those who could pose a danger to our neighborhoods.
Herald: You have championed the fight against drunken driving, and you have done some high-profile investigations into cheating on college admissions tests. Are either of these fights something you would like to take with you to Congress?