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Lee Haywood wasn’t deeply involved in politics – he was busy building and running a business – until the Great Recession hit in 2008.

“With the Great Recession, I lost 60 percent of my business,” Haywood said.

He began at the grass roots level as an activist and, eventually, became the chairman of the Guilford County Republican Party.

He cast his first vote for Ronald Reagan when Reagan ran for president and holds to many of Reagan’s principles, like a belief that individuals know what’s best for them more than a distant government worker or member of Congress. That’s why he believes more economic freedom of choice can improve many things, including health care.

“If it was left to the free market to implement, I think we would have a fair and balanced health care system – one that is market-based and affordable to all,” he said. That’s why he doesn’t think the Affordable Care Act can ever work. “I would like to start over and everything that was predicated on the lie that was passed, we do away with it.”

When asked if that’s feasible, at this point, he responded: “It is if you have the will to do so.”

“If we took government out of it as much as we possibly can and left it to the people to decide the level of health care coverage that they actually need, I think the cost would come down and it would be affordable for everybody,” Haywood said.

His campaign isn’t complicated.

“My three issues are getting rid of the (national) debt, immigration and education. We need to have a fair immigration policy. And we need to get rid of the Department of Education and turn it back over to the states,” he said.

On the debt issue, Haywood says he feels for today’s younger generations.

“They will never be able to repay what we have left them,” he said. “And it’s all our fault but we need someone willing to go up there, shake the tree and say, ‘Enough is enough.’”

When it comes to how he would cut spending to get the debt under control, Haywood says, “I would put everything on the table.”

Haywood emphasizes that he is for immigration.

“No conservative or Republican I know is against legal immigration. We’re for immigration, we need immigration to help our country grow,” he said. He wants it to be legal immigration though.

And the idea of family values is one he says is not taken as seriously as it should be.

“The dissolution of the family unit is a main problem in about everything going on, in this country, including gun violence,” Haywood said.

Meet Lee Haywood in this Your Local Election Headquarters profile.