Presidential Candidate Debate Questions
Charles W. Kraut
11 April 2020
1. How would you respond to the statement, “You cannot win?” And why are you doing this?
My campaign is not just about me; it is about saving this country. Of course, I believe I am the candidate best suited to win the White House by virtue of my adherence to the Constitution, my extensive research, my travels to more than 50 countries, my ongoing conversations with financial experts in many fields all over the world, my background as a Cold Warrior, and much more.
I am doing this because our nation is in very serious trouble. This trouble has been brought on because we have not held our judges and elected officials to their oath of office to support and defend the Constitution. Through my work over the past dozen years I have identified the root of the problems America faces, and having done so I have also identified the solution.
My campaign is about raising awareness among the American people of the peril we face and of our responsibility as citizens to return America to its Constitution and to become once again people of faith, morality, decency, and integrity.
2. Are not you taking votes from Trump and giving them to the Democratic candidate?
It would take a third-party candidate like Ross Perot, someone who could spend millions of dollars to promote himself and his candidacy to have any significant effect on the 2020 election. Because between 30 and 40% of the electorate in this country now consider themselves independent, I am campaigning for the votes of Republicans, Democrats, and Independents, and I anticipate that most of the votes I receive will come from the latter category.
3. If you were President what would you do about COVID-19? Do you see the virus as a National Security issue?
This question requires a lengthy answer. Briefly, as President as soon as I became aware that this pandemic had reached our shores I would urge all 50 governors to work closely and quickly with their state legislatures to come up with commonsense approaches to “flattening the curve” and dramatically slowing the spread of this virus. The president has the right to call a national emergency when military necessity requires it, but all of his other authority regarding emergencies comes from Executive Orders which may or may not be constitutional or even legal.
Next, as President I would work with my Health and Human Services secretary to ensure that the United States had adequate supplies of the additional materials that would be needed to protect as many Americans as possible. I would identify those most at risk and focus the efforts of our states and our communities on them.
Third, I would of necessity ask Congress for funding to seek a vaccine and suitable treatment methods for this virus, in order to minimize its effects upon those who have become infected and show symptoms.
Fourth, I would ensure that the Surgeon General was granted all the resources he or she needed to be able to bring this medical crisis to a swift end.
Finally, I would address the American people. I would introduce them to those experts and professionals who knew best how to respond to this situation. I would set the tone and offer encouragement and hope to the American people, but I would let the experts do with they do best and report regularly on their stewardships.
4. What do you think about Free Trade? Do you favor trade agreements? Which ones? What about the new trade agreement proposed to replace NAFTA?
Simply put, if trade requires trade agreements it is not free trade. Trade agreements involve tariffs and other restrictions upon trade. They are intended to protect certain industries by controlling imports from other nations. Today, the economic advantage China enjoys is one of extremely low labor costs. It is much easier and less expensive to produce a product in China and ship it to the United States that it is to manufacture it here. Is this sufficient justification for tariffs? Probably not. Are there certain industries that need “protection?” That should be decided by someone other than the lobbyists for our major corporations.
Think for a moment about interstate trade. Certain states have significant economic advantages if within their borders they have large deposits of natural resources including coal, iron ore, gold and silver, copper, oil, natural gas, and many others. Do we restrict trade between the states because one has an economic advantage over another? We do not. Why, then, do we support protective tariffs and other restrictions against other nations that enjoy similar economic advantages?
Such trade agreements violate Washington and Jefferson’s injunction to avoid entangling alliances.
5. The Constitution Party platform endorses an end to the Income tax. Do you agree with the platform, and if so, how would you replace the revenue?
This platform is easy to agree with because prior to the 16th amendment the direct taxation of citizens was prohibited by the Constitution. Had we not created the Federal Reserve, and had we not passed numerous bills in the New Deal, we would not have created the welfare state we have today and would most likely be able to balance our budget.
However, we live in the world that we live in, and our politicians have created this enormous mess with an unpayable and unsustainable national debt. As President I would ask Congress to do something which is politically unthinkable; to begin the process of dismantling the New Deal and the Great Society programs. I would work with the Congress in this by giving them political cover and by talking to the people of this country about what it meant to be free, and why a welfare state is the antithesis of what America is supposed to be about.
Over a long period of time, assuming that congressional spending can be held in check and significantly reduced as programs are sunsetted, we would begin to eliminate the national deficit and begin to work on paying off the national debt. In this regard and only in this regard would negative interest rates be helpful, and then only to the government.
Once the United States government return to its sole responsibility of protecting the rights of American citizens, the terribly burdensome costs of government boondoggles like Medicare and Medicaid, along with the more than 2000 other federal giveaway programs would be eliminated.
In the meantime, if it were politically possible to replace the income tax with something like the Fair Tax, or even a Value Added tax as is so popular in Europe, we would have a good chance of replacing the revenue lost with the demise of the income tax.
6. The Constitution Party platform endorses an end to the Federal Reserve. Do you agree with the platform, and if so, what would that do to the US economy, and what would it mean for US status in the world?
The Federal Reserve should never have been created. It served as a model for the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, both of which likewise should not have been created.
That said, it is both essential and almost certainly impossible for us to end the Federal Reserve. The Fed has placed so much money into circulation and bought up so much of public and private debt in United States that ending it out right would bankrupt the United States instantly. The fact that the Federal Reserve has become the de facto guarantor of all the big banks in the United States is another reason why ending it would be disastrous.
The Federal Reserve has the United States firmly in its grip. It calls the tune on far more than the current rate of inflation and the value of the dollar. It has extended its authority, both with and without congressional authorization, into the control of interest rates and the manipulation of the economy in areas like unemployment, wages, and other issues that belong elsewhere.
The Federal Reserve keeps the United States going. If we were on to abolish it is almost certain that the dollar would collapse, causing a global panic that would greatly exceed the destruction wrought in the Great Depression. The world depends upon the United States dollar. That relationship is unsustainable and unpopular; there are limits yet to be discovered as to how far and how much the Federal Reserve can go and do.
By all means, “End the Fed.” Just be prepared for something very closely resembling the end of the world when you do so.
7. What is your position on NATO?
NATO is another one of those violations of George Washington’s injunction about entangling alliances. It came about when the United States emerged as the world’s sole remaining superpower. Then for a time it shared that title of superpower with the Soviet Union, and because of that perceived threat NATO was formed. NATO is based on a false idea, that if one of its members were attacked it should be considered an attack on all the others. When we consider the possibility of a nuclear exchange, it would certainly have been best to exclude all those nations not possessing nuclear weapons from involvement and participation. Instead, by bringing them into NATO, all of them have become targets for attack by any adversary.
Like the Federal Reserve, we may not be able to and NATO overnight, but we can certainly do it gradually. We should not, for instance, have added former Soviet bloc nations to NATO. To a man like Putin that would look like nothing less than what we used to call Soviet aggression and an application of the “Domino theory.” With the end of the Cold War we should have reduced our military footprint throughout the world just as the Soviets did.
8. What is your position on US intervention in the disputes, elections, and wars of foreign nations?
The United States has a dreadful record of assassinations, death from above through the use of armed drones, engaging in combat operations in countries against which we have not declared war, regime change, and nationbuilding. All of these activities have been politically motivated and virtually all of them have failed dramatically.
The United States Senate in a bipartisan vote rejected the Versailles Treaty in 1919 which would have required the United States to engage its Armed Forces, possibly under the command of foreign generals, in wars in which the United States had no strategic or political interests. We were called “isolationists” for doing so, but it was the correct policy then and is the correct policy now. We only create enemies when we engage in regime change and the War on Terror.
9. How are you and the Constitution Party different from the Libertarian Party?
The Libertarian party, from my experience in speaking to its members, generally ignores God. It is positioned somewhere between a constitutional republic and anarchy and is dangerously close to the latter. Members of the Libertarian Party have told me that basically it is the party of “if it feels good, just do it - as long as it does not hurt anyone else. “ This is a false concept. We have a responsibility to one another to be moral and decent responsible citizens. This comes from the foundation of our laws, which is the Christian gospel.
I believe in God. I believe in truth. I believe that God has given us commandments for our benefit. The Constitution Party believes this as well.
10. Where do you differ from the Constitution Party platform and why?
The Constitution Party has taken some positions I would not call extreme, but which are far beyond the realm of political reality. I have struggled with the no-exception rule on abortion but understand that any abortion is the taking of a human life.
I am also concerned with the emphasis on Jesus Christ in our Preamble. As a faithful, active Christian I understand why the Founding Fathers made no mention of God in our Constitution. Christians have no more right to impose their beliefs on people of other faiths than they do upon us – though some of them will use any means at hand to do just that.
We do not have the right to discriminate against who will come to this country and become responsible citizens. If we declare America to be a Christian nation, we may be doing exactly that.
11. The Constitution Party is 100% pro-life. Are you in agreement with that position? If so, how would you, as President, work to abolish “legal” abortion in the United States?
The President has no legal authority in the area of abortion. He can create Executive Orders all day long, but they must not be given the force of law because doing so will be unconstitutional. Instead, I will communicate frequently with the American people and urge them to return to the standards we once upheld. I would urge Congress to act to render Roe v. Wade moot and explain to the American people why 80% of abortion mills are in black neighborhoods. If necessary, I will urge one or more test cases to be brought before federal courts and then the US Supreme Court that will give the Court the opportunity to overturn Roe v. Wade themselves. The US Supreme Court has reversed itself more than 236 times on Constitutional issues.
12. Are federal departments such as the Department of Energy, Bureau of Land Management, HUD, Department of Education, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Food and Drug Administration and EPQ constitutional? Do they have any merit? If not, how would you address that as President?
The only Cabinet departments that are nominally constitutional are those created by Congress or to which Congress has given their blessing. The President cannot do everything himself as the enforcer of the laws, particularly when Congress has passed, and the President has signed into law so many laws requiring the establishment of government bureaucracies.
Some of these departments serve useful purposes until they exceed their Congressional authority and begin to operate in areas closed to them by law. Those departments must be made accountable to the people – or, at the very least, to Congress.
13. Do you believe the educational system in America is adequate? If not, what measures would you take to improve it?
Our educational system is clearly failing in every respect. Government control and Islamic and gay rights influences are combining to produce K-12 graduates with no study habits, no ability to take notes, no real knowledge, and no desire to learn. In addition, they have been indoctrinated in Islam, sexual deviance, gender confusion, and worse.
We must return our public schools to local control and eliminate the influence of the Federal government. This can be done by rejecting all Federal funding of public schools. Most of that money is used to pay bureaucrats whose sole function is to prepare and submit reports to the Department of Education. Then, parents need to be recruited to carefully oversee their children’s education, including attending PTA meetings, school board meeting, and actual classes on a regular basis with their children.