Candidates for the United States Senate and House of Representatives were asked the following questions by The Washington Post:
Freeze: Do you favor a nuclear freeze? If not, do you support other forms of control?
Services: Should additional federal funds be appropriated for social services?
Social Security: Does Social Security need to be changed, and if so, how?
Budget: Do you favor a constitutional amendment requiring a balanced budget?
Beverly B. Byron (D), (Incumbent) 50, of 306 Grove Blvd., Frederick, 6th District representative since 1978, is on the House Armed Services and Interior committees and the Select Committee on Aging. She chairs the Maryland Commission on Physical Fitness and is on the board of directors of Hood College.
Freeze: I am in favor of a reduction of nuclear arms for both the United States and the Soviet Union. We should not tie the hands of our negotiators in Geneva who are attempting to resolve two nuclear arms reduction proposals. Achieving mutual, equal and verifiable reductions must not give the Soviets superiority by foregoing our options to update our weapons systems. It is possible to deploy modern nuclear forces within a significant reduction of overall nuclear arms. Freezing the amount of nuclear arms at current levels will not take any steps toward the goal of lessening the risk of nuclear disaster -- we should reduce first, then freeze at that lower level.
Services: I believe that vital social service programs merit continued federal support. While I feel strongly that we must make reductions in our federal deficit, I do not support drastic cuts in social service programs to accomplish this goal.
Social Security: We need to ensure that present and future Social Security beneficiaries will receive payments to which they are entitled and reform procedures to eliminate waste and excessive costs. A bipartisan commission is currently studying various proposals designed to strengthen both long term and short-term Social Security financing. I look forward to review ing the results of the commission's studies. Returning the Social Security system to essentially a retirement program must be considered.
Budget: This year I voted in favor of a budget resolution that would have balanced the budget in fiscal year 1983. It is clear to me that efforts must continue to balance the federal budget, bring inflation and interest rates under control and restore vigor to our economy. However, while I favor restoring fiscal responsibility to the federal government, I generally feel that the Constitution has served our country well, partly because a number of amendments on specific subjects have not been adopted.
William B. McMahon (D), 52, of Rte. 1, Williamsport, is a builder, a land developer, owner of McMahon's Mill Recreation Area and a criminal justice-privacy consultant to the U.S. Department of Commerce. He previously worked as a consultant and analyst for the U.S. Office of Telecommunications Policy.
Freeze: Yes. Rather than just oppose a freeze on its merits, Reagan backers promoted an alternative House resolution, which they dishonestly claim will reduce rather than just freeze nuclear weapon levels. But the Reagan alternative would really do precisely the opposite. It would sharply accelerate the already crazy race to see who can blow up the world first.
Services: I believe Congress should appropriate additional funds for social services where needed. Reaganomics has caused a great disruption in our economy, and Congress cannot callously disregard people who need a helping hand once in awhile.
Social Security: We must have a dependable Social Security program. The income to the fund must be adjusted to match future benefits. I would make temporary, limited use of general revenues to make up for the current "start-up" short fall. But eventually we must make the system self-supporting.
Budget: I do not favor the present constitutional amendment because it will shift the controls over this country's spending priorities from the legislative branch to the executive and judicial branches of the government. Congress is already supposed to balance the budget. I'm not against further legislation keeping the control over spending priorities with the legislative branch, including a constitutional amendment.
Melvin C. Perkins (D), of 1029 E. Baltimore St., Baltimore. The candidate did not respond to the Washington Post questionnaire.