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An Interview With Matt Gephardt
By Michael Cappetta, 13
Scholastic Student Reporter


Click on the picture to read more about Michael Cappetta.
Matt Gephardt, 33, is the oldest of Congressman Richard Gephardt's three children. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife. He is on a leave of absence from his job as a software designer to campaign for his father, who wants to be the Democrat's candidate for President.

Matt sat down recently with Scholastic News Student Reporter Michael Carpetta, 13, to talk about his father's campaign.

SN: What is it about your father that you think makes him the right choice for President?
Matt: I think he's got the boldest, most innovative ideas and plans and solutions for this country than any of the other candidates out there. I also think that he has the most experience, too. He's been in Congress for 27 years and I believe that we need that type of experience in the White House.

SN: If your dad is elected President, what is the first thing you think he should focus on?
Matt: Probably the first thing he will focus on is health care. His health care plan is called Matt's plan, and it is named after me because when I was young I had cancer and almost died. The only reason I am here today is because I got the treatments I needed to survive. And that is because my dad had the health insurance that covered those treatments. My dad has a plan to make sure all Americans have that kind of good-quality health insurance.

SN: What other issues does your dad support that will affect our readers?
Matt: If we are going to make sure that we have a healthy environment and a healthy mother earth, we need to have a clean energy policy. My dad would promote the production and use of clean energy such as ethanol, and wind, solar, and hydrogen power. We also need to make sure that we provide good security in this country to fight terrorism. My dad has an idea for a home security trust fund to make sure we have more police officers and first responders and fire fighters to protect Americans

SN: It is very easy for candidates to say they are going to give health care to all, and keep our homeland safe. What makes your dad the type of person who is actually going to follow through and do these things once he is elected?
Matt: Well, because he has done it for 27 years in Congress. A lot of the laws that we have today, my dad helped pass. He is the kind of candidate who can get things done. He knows how to do it because he has that experience.

SN: What is one thing that no one knows about your dad that you do?
Matt: He is a lot of fun to be around, and I hope everyone gets to know that side of him.