Keith Swank participated in Ballotpedia’s candidate survey on July 25, 2018. The survey questions appear in bold, and Keith Swank’s responses follow below and can be seen on Ballotpedia’s website.
What would be your top three priorities, if elected?
- You deserve to be safe. That’s why it is necessary to build a wall on our southern border. A wall will help stop the invasion of drug cartels, violent gangs, and terrorists. Last year 65,000 Americans died from drug overdoses, and 4,500 Americans were killed by illegal aliens (mostly violent gang members). We need to stop the violence and keep our citizens safe. A physical wall is the only way to do that.
- You deserve to protect yourself and your family. I am a life-time member of the NRA. I do not believe in gun free zones. Gun free zones are places where terrorists and the mentally deranged can easily kill our family members. Law abiding citizens should be allowed to carry in all 50 states.
- You deserve to keep more of your hard earned money. The tax cuts need to be made permanent, and the government needs to live within its means.
What areas of public policy are you personally passionate about? Why?
You deserve a strong military. During the last administration our military readiness was decreased. We need to spend money to get the military back to strength. When America is strong, the world is safer. You deserve judges that follow the Constitution and do not legislate from the bench. It is very important to elect Senators that understand the Founders’ intent and affirm strict constructionist judges to the bench.
Ballotpedia also asked the candidate a series of optional questions. Keith Swank answered the following:
Who do you look up to? Whose example would you like to follow and why?
I look up to President Trump. The establishment of both parties have been obstructing him from keeping his promises to us. President Trump is fighting the swamp every day, and even though he has all the opposition from the DC establishment, he is still Making America Great Again. It’s time to “Pull the Plug, and Drain the Swamp.”
Is there a book, essay, film, or something else that best describes your political philosophy?
I would like everyone to read and study the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Federalist papers so they can understand the Founders’ intent and see how far astray the country has gone. Then get involved to help save our republic.
What characteristics or principles are most important for an elected official?
Honestly, integrity, courage. Always be honest. Have the utmost integrity, and have the courage to stand for your principles. Don’t give into party or political pressure. People will respect that even if they do not agree with you.
What qualities do you possess that would make you a successful officeholder?
I am a United States Airborne infantry veteran, and a veteran commander of the Seattle Police department. I have been wearing a uniform for 32 years defending America and our communities, and I will defend you in Washington, D.C. I have been in life or death situations, and I have had to make possible life or death decisions. My experience in uniform has given me the experiences to make sound decisions.
What do you believe are the core responsibilities for someone elected to this office?
To always be truthful and vote in a way that is best for America, not individual states or people. Politicians brag about how they can bring money back home to their state. That is the wrong attitude. They should strive to allow citizens to keep more of their hard-earned money so that they can provide the best for their families. When we take money from people and give to others, we have class warfare.
What legacy would you like to leave?
That I was a patriot. I defended America, and I tried to leave it a better place. I would also want my family to say that I was a good husband and father.
What is the first historical event that happened in your lifetime that you remember? How old were you at that time?
Hurricane Agnes in 1972. I was four years old. We lived on a small farm in Pennsylvania, and it flooded. We almost lost several of our animals. It was very scary for me. Ten days later my father died leaving a 30 year old widow and four boys aged 11–2.
What was your very first job? How long did you have it?
My very first job was working on a small farm. I started having chores at four years old, and I worked there until I was 18 and joined the Army. My first paying job was a clerk/pumper at a gas station. I worked there from my junior year through my senior year (until I left for the Army). I worked the graveyard shift and then went to school afterwards.
What happened on your most awkward date?
On my first date (prom) I didn’t have a car or driver’s license yet (hence the job). My mother had to drive me to dinner and the prom. Luckily my mom knew my date and her family. I was still embarrassed though.
What is your favorite holiday? Why?
Easter. Jesus is risen!
What is your favorite book? Why?
I don’t really have a favorite book, but right now I enjoy reading about the Revolutionary War. It humbles me to see what our Founders had to endure.
If you could be any fictional character, who would you be?
Wiley E Coyote. I would catch Buggs Bunny, and he wouldn’t get away.
What is your favorite thing in your home or apartment? Why?
We have a great front porch that is shaded, and has enough sitting room to fellowship with friends and family.
What was the last song that got stuck in your head?
Piano man by Billy Joel.
What is something that has been a struggle in your life?
I try every day to do the right thing and live a Christian life. That is hard to do because I am human and make mistakes.
What qualities does the U.S. Senate possess that makes it unique as an institution?
The Senate has the responsibility to affirm the President’s appointments to the Cabinet and to the bench. To me this is the most important task. The Cabinet makes policy, and judges hold our lives in the balance.
Do you believe that it’s beneficial for senators to have previous experience in government or politics?
Our Founders wanted citizen legislators not career politicians. Therefore, I do not believe that prior elected experience is necessary to be a Senator. I believe that true patriots do not need any prior elected experience to make decisions that are best for America. Further, I think if we elected “regular” people to office we would be able to simplify things and make America even better.
What do you think of the filibuster?
I am against the filibuster. I believe issues should be presented for an up or down vote.
What criteria would you apply when deciding whether to confirm presidential appointees?
If they follow the Constitution, if they are honest, if they have integrity, if they understand the position responsibilities.
What do you perceive to be the United States’ greatest challenges as a nation over the next decade?
Illegal immigration is our biggest national security issue. We need to stop the invasion of violent drug cartels and violent gangs from coming into our country and killing our family members.
Do you believe it’s beneficial to build relationships with other senators?
I do not believe that the left ever “compromises”. We need to defeat them at the ballot, and send constitutionalists to the Senate. Too many Republicans (RINOS) think we can work together. That is not true, especially now. The left hates President Trump so much that they are working to undermine his Presidency every day. There are even Republicans (Never Trumpers) who are doing the same. The establishment needs to be defeated. We need to “Pull the Plug, and Drain the Swamp.”
If you are not a current senator, are there certain committees that you would want to be a part of?
I would like to be part of the judiciary committee.
If you are not currently a member of your party’s leadership in the U.S. Senate, would you be interested in joining the leadership? If so, in what role?
I would like to replace the current Senate majority leader with a Senator that will fight for America and American values.
Is there a particular senator, past or present, whom you want to model yourself after?
There are a few current Senators that understand freedom and liberty, and I would like to learn from them. Unfortunately, there are many more who are trying to destroy the American fabric, and they need to be defeated in their next election.