Congressional candidate Greg Walcher browsed old cars and studied old maps during a campaign stop in Craig Thursday.
Walcher, a peach farmer from Palisade and former director of the Colorado Natural Resources Department, met four mechanics at Precision Auto Service during their lunch break to talk taxes and health insurance.
"We're a badly overtaxed people and we need a break," Walcher said.
Walcher, a Republican, is running against Rep. John Salazar, D-Manassa, for the 3rd Congressional District seat being vacated by Republican Scott McInnis.
Taxes are the primary difference between the candidates, Walcher said. He supports making President Bush's tax cuts permanent. That means eliminating the marriage penalty tax and the so-called "death tax." "If Bush's tax cuts are repealed, the average family would see a tax increase of $1,500, Walcher said.
To lower insurance costs, Walcher said he'd seek to place a cap on lawsuit awards, and he'd have the suit's loser pay the winner's legal fees. That would eliminate frivolous lawsuits, he said.
Walcher also supports the creation of association insurance. Members of these groups could purchase lower rate insurance, just as larger corporations already can. It would only require a minor legal change to institute association insurance, he said.
Walcher has criticized Salazar for calling the war in Iraq a war for oil. Walcher supports the war, calling it a critical part of the war on terror. "It's so cynical to call it a war for oil. That's an insult to our soldiers. To me, that indicates someone has no idea why we're in the war."
Although the Sept. 11 Commission didn't find a connection between the Sept. 11, 2001terrorist attacks and Iraq, the country had a history of harboring terrorists, Walcher said.
According to a poll commissioned by Salazar's campaign and released Monday, the Democrat is ahead of Walcher by 17 points.
Walcher visited Steamboat in the afternoon, then returned for a reception at the Center of Craig, hosted by T. Wright Dickinson and Ron and Audrey Danner. Invitations requested donations of $100.
Salazar plans to make an appearance in Craig at 7 a.m. Saturday at the Golden Cavvy.