Welcome to the 2022 Voter Guide produced by the League of Women Voters and Akron Beacon Journal with funding from the Knight Foundation.
This file focuses on the 13th Congressional District with seven Republicans vying to challenge Democrat Emilia Sykes of Akron in November. The seat is currently held by Tim Ryan, D-Niles, who is running for U.S. Senate.
The district covers all of Summit County, Mogadore in Portage County and northern Stark County.
Candidate responses are not edited.
A link to our complete interactive Summit County Voter Guide showing just races on your ballot can be found immediately below.
2022 Primary Voter Guide:Tell us where you live and view custom ballot
Madison Gesiotto Gilbert
Candidate did not respond.
Candidate did not respond.
Education: University of Maryland, College Park
Training/Experience: International relations and National Security
Current Occupation: Government Consultant and Foreign affairs writer
Given our experience with Covid-19, what precautions would you put in place to allow for safe, secure elections whereby voters are not choosing between their health and their right to vote, especially in November? Include how you would fund any necessary precautions and changes. The role of the government is to protect the individual and provide them uniform opportunity. It is not to direct and conscribe their lives. Though, local and state government are the bodies that oversee the elections and their direct relation to their communities allows them to know best what the sentiment and best safety precautions are needed to assure a safe and healthy election.
Describe what you have done to work across political differences to solve problems and foster trust with the voters you represent. One aim of my campaign is to highlight the best of the republicans party. To act as an example of how to party and its fundamental ideology can and does align with all types of people. The demographic shift of the nation is inevitable and we, as a party and nation, must accept and adjust course if we want to pursue what is best for our collective national interest.
How would you address immigration policy? The population of all developed nations is beginning to stagnate and peter. Moreover, as 2022 as shown us, the U.S. lacks the massive lobar force needed to continue the high-level production needed for continued economic growth. Therefore, we must supplement our labor force and immigrants are a favorable and familiar option. Though, we must, as a nation, enforce border security and allow individuals to enter our nation legally. As a matter of national security, we are not a nation if we do not have robust and strong borders.
Where do you stand on efforts to protect our water, air and land? Climate change is a reality, and it is the chief danger to humankind, not just the United States. The science is unequivocal, and the issue must be confronted now. This danger is not impending, it is present. The totality of humankind has contributed to climate change, and it will take the collective resolve of humankind to combat its acceleration. Energy underpins our modern life and tethers the global together. We consume energy with nearly every daily action we take, and energy is the bedrock of production and economic prosperity. Regardless of climate change, our energy sources (fossil fuels like coal and gas) are finite and will we inevitability run out; hence, the U.S. must look into alternative sources of energy to meet its growing demand and importance. Advancements in Nuclear power have made it a promisingly attractive energy alternative. Nuclear energy is clean and sustainable, and despite its reputation, much safer than the carbon emitting sources we currently employ. To add, innovations in nuclear reactor technology have made future plant construction more time and cost effective.
What legislation, if any, would you suggest to address gun safety? I am a proponent of individuals having the right to own a gun, for self defense and/or sport. I am not in favor of the federal government dictating and conscribing individuals lives and purchases. Moreover, the fact that many Americans are armed can be a matter of national security, domestic and abroad; It serves the purpose of deterring authoritarian actors, either domestic or abroad. That being said, there are some pragmatic measures that are effective in assuring that the wrong people (those with intentions that are not related to defense or sport) are prevented from gaining an weapon.
What solutions do you propose to address challenges in the healthcare system, women’s reproductive rights and maternal and child health? The government must turn it’s attention to helping the mothers, pre and post pregnancy. It must act to give alternatives to women who choose to have a child they may not want or are able to adequately care for. The role of a liberal democratic government is not to dictate and mandate individuals lives and their personal health; it is to use policy and law to, if need, guide individuals and to provide them uniform opportunity, not hand outs.
Janet Folger Porter
Education: Graduated with honors with a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Communication from Cleveland State University, & Honorary Ph.D. from South Florida Bible College
Training/Experience: Founder and President of Faith2Action Ministries 2003-present, National Director of the Center for Reclaiming America (1998-2002) Legislative Director Ohio Right to Life (1988-1997)
Occupation: Founder and President of Faith2Action Ministries
Given our experience with Covid-19, what precautions would you put in place to allow for safe, secure elections whereby voters are not choosing between their health and their right to vote, especially in November? Include how you would fund any necessary precautions and changes. For those who are worried about voting in person, absentee voting is a viable option. Regarding funding, I will introduce the “No Federal Funds for Fraud Act” to remove election-related funding from states that don’t require a photo-ID to vote, redirecting those funds to help states who transition to secure, watermarked, sequential paper ballots, limit early voting to one week or less, and prohibit mail-in votes with the exception of requested absentee ballots.
Describe what you have done to work across political differences to solve problems and foster trust with the voters you represent. As the architect of the pro-life Heartbeat Law (which protects every unborn child whose heartbeat can be detected), I worked with both Republicans and Democrats in Ohio, other states, and in Congress to help secure bi-partisan passage of Heartbeat Laws in 14 states and counting.
How would you address immigration policy? I would prioritize securing the Southern border, reduce human trafficking, illegal drugs, deport criminal aliens, and defund Sanctuary cities violating Federal law. I would vote to finish the wall and name it after President Donald J. Trump, but also support immigration reform to allow more people to come here legally.
Where do you stand on efforts to protect our water, air and land? I am a strong advocate for protecting our air, water and land and would support legislation that safeguards us from pollutants and toxic contaminants that threaten our safety and the safety of our animals, and our crops.
What legislation, if any, would you suggest to address gun safety? As the daughter of an Army Sergeant, I am a strong advocate for veterans and against efforts to restrict and remove guns from law-abiding citizens. I am a strong advocate of gun safety classes and training, as I participated in when I received my concealed carry permit.
What solutions do you propose to address challenges in the healthcare system, women’s reproductive rights and maternal and child health? I believe the free market healthcare best addresses our healthcare needs, giving patients freedom to choose their doctors and care, and support women facing an unplanned pregnancy through pregnancy centers (I have spoken for and supported in Ohio and around the nation) and adoption by parents, many of whom have waited more than a decade to adopt and love a child. I also led the charge to pass Ohio’s Woman’s Right to Know Law, which informs mothers of free help that is available to them and the requirement of the father to provide financial support. I also added funding for adoption support within the Ohio Heartbeat Law.
Education: Jackson High School, University of Akron – BS Finance
Training/Experience Military training: Gulf War Veteran, Small business(es) founder and owner (3). International Christian missionary. Aptitudes include: technology, cyber security, business operations, youth baseball coaching, Christian discipleship, business finance, negotiation.
Occupation: Businesses owned and managed: 1) Technology and cybersecurity; 2) Baseball academy; 3) Property company
Given our experience with Covid-19, what precautions would you put in place to allow for safe, secure elections whereby voters are not choosing between their health and their right to vote, especially in November? Include how you would fund any necessary precautions and changes. I would allow people to take as many precautions as would make them feel comfortable. I would not restrict someone’s right to protect themselves, nor would I force them to protect themselves in a way that they did not feel comfortable.
Describe what you have done to work across political differences to solve problems and foster trust with the voters you represent. I have hosted several roundtable discussions across the political and geographic spectrum. It is important to have honest discussions so that we can learn the perspective of all citizens and try to find solutions that actually work. I plan to use this template after I am elected to continue to foster honest and sincere discussions.
How would you address immigration policy? I want to welcome immigrants from all over the world to our great country. I believe we need to make the process for legally immigrating to the USA more efficient and simple for as many as possible. At the same time, we need to secure our borders so that we encourage legal immigration and discourage illegal immigration.
Where do you stand on efforts to protect our water, air and land? I believe we should protect our environment so that we have clean water, air and to maintain our beautiful country. I am in favor of local communities having more power in the protection of their local environment and the Federal government having less power.
What legislation, if any, would you suggest to address gun safety? I don’t believe we need more legislation but we definitely need to enforce the laws that are on the books with regard to criminal behavior and gun violence. We also need to investigate gun crimes more vigorously and train law enforcement better in protecting themselves and the public against gun violence.
What solutions do you propose to address challenges in the healthcare system, women’s reproductive rights and maternal and child health? We need more competition and less regulation in health insurance in order to offer more appropriate choices for all individuals and their medical preferences. Competition will also force insurance companies and providers to offer better service, lower costs and remove some of the unnecessary compliance and administrative costs which will make health care more for fair and affordable for everyone.
Candidate did not respond.
Education: Juris Doctorate, Masters of Science in Accountancy, Masters of Business Administration, Bachelors of Arts (Biochemistry / Economics)
Training/Experience: Attorney, Accountant, Real Estate Agent, Pilot
Occupation: Attorney / Accountant
Given our experience with Covid-19, what precautions would you put in place to allow for safe, secure elections whereby voters are not choosing between their health and their right to vote, especially in November? Include how you would fund any necessary precautions and changes. Candidate did not respond.
Describe what you have done to work across political differences to solve problems and foster trust with the voters you represent. I am deeply concerned by the polarization of our two parties. I am a hardworking, local Akronite, who understands firsthand the difficulty of living in this district. The average person in the OH-13 makes $10,000 less than the national average. Our district has double the poverty rate of the national average. Inflation from reckless government spending has made us all poorer. By working hard to bring everyone together against this problem, we can find common ground and end division. As a candidate that actually lives and works here, I have found that most people in our district are more concerned with living their life and achieving their goals than focusing on petty political differences. My team is comprised of individuals with many backgrounds and opinions. Trust comes from people having one-on-one engagement with their elected officials, which is why I have attended hundreds of events across the district, and me and my team have knocked on more than ten thousand doors.
How would you address immigration policy? We must have strong borders because our nation provides many government services including (but not limited to) free/or subsidized food (food stamps), housing (section 8), and medicine (Medicare). If we don’t have strong borders, individuals who have entered the nation illegally can potentially take advantage of these, and similar, programs, at the expense of us- the taxpayers. As a republican, I believe we must govern conservatively and with a conscience. Some of the most patriotic individuals I know have immigrated to our nation. They embody the American ideal. I am pro-immigration. We must have clear requirements for legal entry into our nation, and we must enforce those requirements. Illegal immigration is a crime. In 2021, over 1.5 million people arrived at the southern border and crossed it for the first time. Border Patrol agents carried out over 1,000,000 expulsions and deportations. It’s clear, securing our border and enforcing our federal law is becoming difficult. When elected, my job will be to provide the tools to the men and women who have the incredibly difficult job of enforcing our nation’s laws and protecting our country. We need to reform immigration laws so that there is less incentive to attempt it illegally.
Where do you stand on efforts to protect our water, air and land? The phrasing of this question is potentially ambiguous and could relate to National Defense or Environmental Conservation. I will address both issues briefly. Regarding National Defense- protecting our nation is one of the Federal Government’s most important functions. When elected to office, I will be responsible for ensuring our military is properly equipped and potentially deciding issues relating to war. These decisions will affect our nation’s position on the world stage for years to come. We must support the men and women serving in our military. More importantly, we must support our veterans after their service. Regarding Environmental Conservation- our nation has been blessed with an abundance of natural resources. We must protect what we have, for ourselves, and future generations. Our nation needs common sense environmental policies that reasonably advocate for superior technology, while pushing for changes that are achievable in a reasonable timeline. We need energy independence, so that our nation’s security is not reliant on the whims of foreign parties. Once energy independence is secure, we must make a targeted effort, as a country, to ensure the long-term viability of our nation and our water, air, and land.#savesoil
What legislation, if any, would you suggest to address gun safety? Legislation often fails to address societal issues. There are many laws making the sale, possession, and use of heroin illegal. People break the law. Common sense would indicate that legislation affecting guns will be followed by law abiding citizens but ignored by criminals.Legislation made to affect gun safety should be targeted to incentivize good behavior, educate the public, and reduce common safety issues without punishing citizens for exercising their second amendment right. The carrot is always more effective than the stick. Legislation which grants tax benefits for purchasing gun safes, taking classes, or owning guns safely allows for law abiding citizens to benefit, safety to flourish, and avoids infringement of a constitutional right.
What solutions do you propose to address challenges in the healthcare system, women’s reproductive rights and maternal and child health? I believe the best government is a local government. Healthcare is provided locally. Healthcare should be a local issue. I do not want government bureaucrats in Washington DC deciding important issues for me, my family, or my fellow Ohioans. When elected, my role will be to provide federal support to local governments to ensure these complex issues are addressed by local leadership, and us as individuals.
Candidate did not respond.