- Position sought: State Representative, 35h District
- Official name of your campaign committee (if you have one): Citizens for Anthony Martin
- E-mail address:
- Website: http://martinforstaterep.com/
- Twitter: @MartinForRep
- Facebook: MartinforStateRep
- Phone: (773) 609-0303
- Address: 3754 W. 111th St., Chicago, IL 60655
- Age: 46
- Political Party: Democrat
- Family: Married to Bridget Martin for 12 years, and together they have four children: Noreen (10), Edward (8), Kathleen (6), Bridget (18 months).
- Education: B.A. in political science from Saint Xavier University; Juris Doctorate at John Marshall Law School, anticipated graduation December 2012.
- Occupation: Chicago Fire Lieutenant, trustee Chicago Firefighters Pension
- Previous Elected or Appointed Offices: Chicago Firefighters’ pension fund: Four-term Trustee. Former President and current Secretary.
1. Is there any additional experience you believe qualifies you for the position?
During my time as a former President and current four-term Trustee, the Firefighters’ pension fund has had the highest investment performance, the lowest investment related expenses and the lowest administrative expenses of any of Chicago’s public pension funds.
I am the president and co-founder of the Ende, Menzer, Walsh, and Quinn Retirees, Widows and Children¹s Assistance Fund which has distributed approximately $4.9 million over the past eight years to 471 widows living at or near the poverty level and to all children who have lost a parent who was an active member of the fire department.
2. What would your priorities be if elected to this office?
My top priority is to clean up the state budget and make Illinois a responsible partner for our communities, working families, and businesses. Our state government must do whatever it can to put people back to work and ensure it fulfills its obligations to provide the services to our most vulnerable citizens. We must also bring parents, teachers, and administrators together in a process to provide local schools with the resources educate our children at a world-class level.
3. What sets you apart from the other candidates?
My work as a trustee on the Chicago Firefighters’ pension fund has given me valuable experience working with public finance and managing $960 million in retirement savings. During my time on the pension fund is the most efficient, best-performing fund in Chicago. Through my work with the Widows and Children’s Assistance Fund, I’ve raised millions of dollars for the benefit of the working families in need.
As a Chicago Fire Lieutenant for 23 years, I have dedicated myself to protecting our community. I’ve also devoted myself to my continuing education, and am in my final year at John Marshall Law School.
4. What should first be done by the state to keep businesses that have strongly voiced the possibility of leaving, such as CME and Sears?
We must first address the states’ budget issues. Illinois’ budget deficit is unacceptable, and we need to make paying our bills a priority. By simplifying the business tax code and closing corporate loopholes, we can actually lower our corporate tax rate, so long as businesses are all contributing their fair share.
5. What can be done to help College Illinois?
Our state needs better administrative expertise at state schools and nonpartisan investment practices. College Illinois has experienced poor administrative practices, which has led to inefficiencies and poor investment decisions.
6. What should the government do to create more jobs?
Investing in infrastructure, will put people to back to work. Better roads and other infrastructure improvements will make doing business in Illinois and the 35th district more attractive to the business community. Additionally, ensuring all corporations pay their fair share in taxes will take the burden off of small businesses and help keep and create jobs in Illinois.
7. What are your philosophies on social issues such as same-sex marriage and abortion, and what should government’s role in those issues?
As a Catholic, my personal beliefs do not allow me to advocate for abortion or same-sex marriage. I do, however, firmly believe in our social and moral obligation as a society to ensure every child enters safe, well-supported environment. We have an ethical and constitutional obligation to offer the same benefits and protections to every citizen.
8. Do you support a gaming bill that would increase the number of casinos or other gambling venues in Illinois? Should a casino be built in Chicago?
While I only support bringing casinos to Chicago in designated and targeted areas -- whether we like it or not, our residents do gamble. Our state loses potential revenue every time someone goes out of state to do so. With our current budgetary challenges, we cannot afford to turn our back on that potential source of revenue.
9. What do you suggest for property tax relief?
We must prioritize spending and look at the entirety of the tax code in a manner that generates sufficient revenue. I am in favor of a moderately progressive personal income tax.
10. Should the state consider consolidating school districts? What would be the best way to accomplish this in your legislative district?
I would consult with local school boards in my district before voting on such legislation. I do support granting school districts the power initiate consolidation where it makes sense and does not hinder the schools’ ability to fulfill their mission of educating our children.
11. Should the state legalize marijuana?
12. Are there ways to reform the legislative scholarship program, or would you support calls to eliminate the program?
The legislative scholarships are often not based on merit, but awarded as patronage payouts. These scholarships should be awarded as they were intended--to exemplary students from families in need. If we cannot accomplish that, the program should be eliminated.
13. Who are your political heroes and why?
Al Smith was a Democrat, a former New York Governor and the first Catholic Presidential nominee from any major established political party. He was a progressive politician who stayed committed to his agenda, and to his values and faith an remained true to his core ideals, which are popular within the movement today.
John Adams is a hero of mine because, like Al Smith, he was committed to his core values. Throughout his life, Adams was viewed as a stubborn man, which made him unpopular. But looking back on what he accomplished in his political career, his decisions were carefully considered and prudent in the early years during the founding of the United States. And he had the foresight to predict future obstacles that our country would face domestically, internationally, and politically.