Idaho's 2nd Congressional District Challenge for 2018

EzDebate is challenging each candidate to answer questions for their constituents. We will be posting the recorded answers so voters can view them.

The following questions were submitted to the candidates:

  • What is your stance on gun control and the 2nd amendment?
  • What is your stance on immigration?
  • Are our trade policies with other nations good for our country or should they be revised?
  • Why are health care costs rising and what can be done about it?
  • Other than the issues already discussed, what is the greatest threat facing our nation today and how will you address it?
  • Other than the issues already discussed, what is the most important issue facing Idaho and how will you address it?

Aaron Swisher (Democrat)
Participation Confirmed

Aaron Swisher was born and raised in rural West Virginia - the son of a mailman and a bank teller. He grew up, like many of us, with the understanding that hard work, honesty, and personal responsibility were the building blocks of success. After high school, Aaron worked in residential construction and textile manufacturing, before realizing his desire to study economics. He moved to Boise in 1993 to attend Boise State University, where he graduated with degrees in economics and finance.

After leaving BSU, Aaron worked at Micron Technology, where he quickly moved to the company’s treasury department to manage the corporation’s cash. It was during this time that he began to realize that America had an income disparity problem and the economy -- particularly the housing market -- lacked the foundation that was truly needed to support solid growth. Aaron's book, Resuscitating America: An Independent Voter’s Guide to Restoring the American Dream, puts forth a comprehensive economic plan for reviving the economy, balancing the budget, and solving America’s energy and environmental problems.

Aaron most recently left his job at Clarivate Analytics -- providing brand protection and anti-fraud services to corporate clients -- to campaign full time. His forthcoming book, The Wealth and Poverty of Capital Nations, put forward a new school of economic thought that fixes the problems caused by Republican and Democratic economic theories. Aaron and his wife, Elizabeth, live in Boise and are the proud parents of a two-year-old son, Cormac.

Aaron is running to create a better deal for working-class Americans. He has watched his fellow Americans – even those with college degrees and two-income households – struggle to maintain a secure living. He believes that anyone working full time should be able to support themselves and meet their basic needs. Aaron understands that a fairer paycheck for a majority of Americans will not only build stronger families; but also create a thriving national economy. By elevating the American middle class, we can help alleviate many of our social problems, strengthen and protect our Social Security system, help solve our healthcare crisis, and balance the federal budget.

America needs members of Congress who will fight for the middle class. Aaron understands that we don’t need a bigger bureaucracy to create better-paying jobs, but we do need a government that acts in the best interest of American workers.

... See Entire Bio

Peter Rickards (Democrat)
Participation Confirmed

I started as a twinkle in my Mom & Dad's eyes, like most of you!

My Dad immigrated to America in the 1950's from England & still works 7 days a week as a veterinarian at age 92. He just became a citizen! He was waiting to see how the colonies worked out, as I tease him...

So I grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, the home of The Burning River, The Cuyahoga.

Yes, despite the claim by many politicians that mankind does NOT affect the environment, when the river catches on FIRE, TWICE, HMM... well, YES WE DO!

I grew up like a 4-H kid, even in the suburbs of Cleveland, since Dad would wake me up at night to help on emergency Cesarians or whatever...

I fought the Sempra coal plant planned for Jerome because it emits mercury that poison's kids. There is SO much mercury in fish doctors now warn pregnant women & kids to limit the fish they eat to avoid too much mercury. They still recommend nutritious fish but now we poisoned God's gift we must be careful.

Be clear I opposed Obama's CO2 Cap & Trade scheme. Taxing CO2 only makes our bills higher! Regulations are needed but they need to make common sense.

I worked my way through college by the age of 19. The life lessons I learned in the Emergency Room, as a nurse's aide have stayed with me.

I later went to Podiatric Medical School & worked on an Indian reservation in South Dakota 3 years where my first son was born.

We moved to beautiful Twin Falls, Idaho in 1986 where my 2nd son was born. I felt on top of the world to be so lucky to raise my kids in beautiful Idaho! But then I found out we were being volunteered for Front Line nuclear duty with the SIS plutonium project at INL.

I jumped into those nuclear issues in 1988 when Idaho was told: "INL was a clean site and there was nothing to clean up!" HMMM... The politicians claimed we were "lucky to get this SIS Plutonium Separator. There is a plutonium shortage!" Hmmm, we had enough plutonium weapons to blow up the surface of the earth 10 times over so it was clear to me we were being lied to.

So I formed a group with 4 local MD's & 4 citizens, including Republican Party TF chairman, Mark Stubbs. I vowed to stop this attempt to cluster ALL nuclear weapons & ALL nuclear energy dirty work in Idaho. I called our citizen group IS IS DEAD ON ARRIVAL.

Mark & I went to Washington DC to ask Sen Thurmond & Congressman Spratt to take the plutonium project for the jobs. Spratt then tabled the project! Hmm... The 1995 nuclear "Get The Waste Out" deal was the biggest lie in Idaho history. Fake news, fake politicians but the plutonium is REAL...

On March 11, 2011, modern "safe nuclear power exploded & melted down at Fukushima. INL speaker teams had always said to innocent Rotary Club meeting that mistakes were ALL in the past & nuclear power was safe. I have SO many documents on other serious containment flaws hidden deeply. I decided I should retire to focus on trying to send that info around to anyone & everyone who would hear, like the citizen activists around the country, who try to protect their families & neighbours....

I was watching the Congress try to kill Obamacare & shaking my head at their lack of plans that would not hurt families. It dawned on me, at this moment, the whole country is watching the Republicans get in their circular firing squad to kill Obamacare, tired of their high bills & lack of coverage. I saw a light at the end of the tunnel. Why not try one more time to share why I have trying to get your attention to stop this insanity.

It doesn't cost any money, to tell the truth. More folks are on the web now. Maybe it's just another nuclear waste train coming to run me over... I tried to talk myself out of it for a week but it just kept looking like it might work to help us all....

I am independent but I am going to run in the Democrat Party. I was trying to think of a catchy label. I like to conserve clean air & clean water. I like tight budgets, so I am a conservative. I love freedom, WITH RESPONSIBILITY, so I am a liberal since I LOVE LIBERTY.

I get a TON of SIMPLE ideas on how to hopefully help people, with common sense. So with a TON of SIMPLE ideas, please call me a SIMPLETON !

...Peter...

Are we having FUN YET?

... See Entire Bio