A candidate forum for Congressional District 3 was held in Newberry on July 18, with the following candidates present: Bill Engelbrecht, Joe Dallas Millado, Judson Sapp, Kat Cammack, Ryan Chamberlin, Amy Pope Wells, and Gavin Rollins.
The forum was moderated by Tim Marden and Jennifer Cabrera.
During the break after Question #14, some audience members submitted questions, and to save time, each candidate was given 30 seconds to respond to the following.
Question #15: What’s the greatest threat right now to the American way of life?
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Engelbrecht: “China. That’s our greatest threat right now. Our healthcare… if they wanted to hold back those prescription drugs, how many people would be sick and dying right now? It would decimate America as we stand. So they don’t need to come invade our country using guns. All they’ve got to do is withhold our prescriptions.”
Millado: “The greatest threat used to be the uninformed voter, but today it is the uninformed Member. People that we thought were qualified… up here… we’re not millionaires and we don’t have the right name. My campaign and my message and what we’re doing is you don’t need the right name; you need your name. And you don’t need a million dollars. So that is the problem with our nation and the direction we’re headed in, is unqualified Members voting on something they have no idea about.”
Sapp: “It’s the deficit. And that’s why… I talk about my kids—that bill’s going to them, and that’s ridiculous. We have to get it under control because, let me tell you, when we’re begging for money from other countries, that makes us vulnerable. We have to be strong, and we have to balance the budget, and we have to get the deficit under control.”
Cammack: “I would say there’s two major threats right now to the United States, the biggest ones being our national debt and this very, very quick slide that we’re seeing into Socialism.”
Chamberlin: “I would say, in addition to our national debt, we’re still dealing with a border that is not secure, and we’re seeing constant threats to the United States of America that need to be protected, just like we protect our children at our home where we live today. That’s the way we need to treat this country.”
Wells: “We really have three: our vulnerability to China. Let’s be honest, it might cost us a little bit more to have things back here, but we can fix that with a competitive free market. Number two, our deficit. It’s out of control, and we’re going to be at the mercy of it before too long. The third is, you know, when we’re out on the streets campaigning, the reality is, Americans are lazy, and they’re not fighting. And we need to fight more, and we need more people standing up beside us, fighting with us. And I hope to see this during this campaign, more people engaged.”
Rollins: “So the radical left, and they are funded by Communist China, and they want to undermine and destroy everything we hold dear in this country, and we have to fight back. We have to call it what it is, it’s an insurrection, it’s a radical element that is anarchist and wants the downfall of our country and our government, and I won’t let it stand on my watch.”
Question #16: Do you support mandatory vaccination?
Millado: “No, no, no. No, no, no, no, no. No all the way! Absolutely no.”
Cammack: “Hell, no!”
Chamberlin: “Absolutely not.”
Wells: “My first answer to this is, being previously a clinician, is absolutely not, number one. But number two, I think we should have mandatory education so people can understand what’s actually happening with this.”
Rollins: “Absolutely not. We need medical freedom, and that’s why, as a county commissioner, I’ve fought against mandating masks in Clay County, because you, as Americans, have the right to choose what happens to you.”
Engelbrecht: “The answer is no, absolutely not. I believe it should be the choice of individuals, and that’s what we stand for in America, is individual freedoms, and that is our freedom to make that decision, not the government’s.”
Question #17: What can Congress do about the fact that some immigration laws are not being enforced?
Cammack: “It’s no secret that immigration in this country has been broken for 30 years, and we have a couple different issues that have to be addressed, and I shy away from the word ‘comprehensive’ because every attempt has been a ‘comprehensive’ reform, and it never happens the way that it should because it always puts Americans and American interests last, which is why we need to start going after this in a very systematic way. First and foremost, enforce every single law that we have on the books, currently.”
Chamberlin: “Obama definitely overstepped some boundaries with this issue, but I’ll tell you, I come from a family—my wife’s 100% Cuban, my four boys are half-Cubans; I’m the only white guy in the house. We’ve talked about immigration all these years; I’ll tell you, we need to follow the laws that are in place, but we cannot allow any leader to overstep boundaries.”
Wells: “I’m in the jobs business, so it’s very interesting because probably, in some of the space that I do, in the industrial skill trade area, I’m probably the only company that actually follows our own immigration laws. It’s very sad. I see people that are highly skilled that come into the United States because we’ve brought them here, and we need their skills here, but yet they can’t stay here. And so it’s expensive, the trial attorneys have taken abuse of this, and other employers are abusing it as well. We need to reform our immigration process, bring it up to speed, but we also need to mandate it from the employer side as well, that they have to follow the same laws because it does not make things fair.”
Rollins: “I think through the power of the purse, we can help hold the president and the enforcement side of it accountable, but any immigration discussion has to begin with building the wall and securing our border. It’s national security; it’s not an immigration issue, it’s a national security issue. We have to know who’s coming into our country. And then, for those who legally want to come here, simplify the process, but only come here if you want to be an American, not to come and hate our country.”
Engelbrecht: “If you’re going to use our benefits, you must pay into our benefits… How we want to look at immigration—Thank God that COVID-19 did not come from Mexico. Can you imagine where we’d be today? It came from China, so lovely President Trump shut down what he did, so I support immigration; I think it needs to be really, really locked down.”
Millado: “As a first-generation Filipino-American, I understand the rigors of coming here the right way. I understand that there are issues and things that we can work on to address comprehensive immigration reform, even at a step-by-step process. But the thing is, we need to build a wall, but the wall was authorized back in like 1982, portions of it, then 2007, when I was first an intern. So these things should have already been built because it was authorized. We need to be talking about how we actually man it… how we need drones, and what process do we do once we catch those individuals.”
Sapp: “Well, as a several-generation Cracker… the reality is that we do have power of the purse. If they don’t want to enforce immigration laws, if they want to be a sanctuary city, let’s withhold federal tax dollars. Let’s fight ‘em the way we’re legally allowed to.”