Independent write-in candidate James Jerome Bell and Republican nominee Beverly Goldstein will challenge incumbent Marcia L. Fudge, D-Warrensville Heights, for her 11th District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives in the Nov. 6 election. The term is for two years.

The candidates responded to a questionnaire from the Cleveland Jewish News.

Bell, 52, a consultant and notary, said the two issues that affect this race are reparations for slavery and mass incarceration of African-American descent.

“Historically, it has been shown with both of Jewish and Japanese experience during War World II that reparations are just and fair to a people who have been brutalized, murdered, humiliated and dishonored,” he said. 

He added he would like to see stricter gun control and part of his platform includes abolishing the Second Amendment.

“There are just too many guns available for wicked deeds and atrocities to mankind in American society,” he said. “We must be civil and humane in the way in which we deal with arms in our society, the Bible says that we shall turn our swords into plowshares.”

Fudge, 65, said she wants to attract jobs to Northeast Ohio, particularly in the 11th Congressional district, and promote workforce development so residents can take advantage of employment opportunities. To do so, she said she would support business development, “especially small businesses, and promoting grant and contract opportunities for existing businesses.” 

She said she is also concerned with ensuring access to equitable educational resources for students in prekindergarten to 16 years old to grow and sustain the workforce. She said she could accomplish this by promoting “equitable access to educational resources for all despite ZIP code, as shown by inclusion of a sponsored bill in the Every Student Succeeds Act to require equitable access to public school resources.”

Goldstein, 70, an audiologist, said illiteracy is an issue of concern for her as illiterate adults “cannot qualify for job training and can never get a good job” leading to “government assistance for life.”

As a way to address this issue, she said she would “establish a program to open literacy centers, based on Seeds of Literacy model, in appropriate neighborhoods.”

Another issue of concern for Goldstein is illegal immigration, which she said negatively effects housing, healthcare, employment and wage rates. 

“Jobs go to illegal residents not to our own citizens, waiting years for a chance of normal prosperity, a chance that never comes,” she said.

In addressing this issue she said to “build the wall,” enforce the borders, offer no sanctuary jurisdictions and stop all government benefits to illegal immigrants.  

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