Alaska GOP Senate nominee Joe Miller joined me on yesterday’s program. You can contribute to his campaign via this link. The transcript of our conversation shows that Miller will bring an originalist’s view to the Senate, as well as the experience that only a West Point graduate who fought in the Gulf War can have to the oversight of the military.
HH: Joined now by the most amazing political figure in America this week. Joe Miller is the Republican nominee for the United States Senate in Alaska, the upset of 2010, I believe, after Scott Brown’s election in Massachusetts. Joe Miller, welcome to the Hugh Hewitt Show. It’s great to talk to you.
JM: Thanks for having me, Hugh. Glad to be on.
HH: Let’s start by telling people how they find your website.
JM: www.joemiller.us, and we need plenty of traffic there, especially to the donate button.
HH: Oh, you bet, because I imagine Democrats now think they’ve got a rookie on the table, and they’re going to be able to take you out with some union money. Have you seen any of that yet?
JM: Well, it’s going to flow in. There’s no doubt about it. The DNC is already all over this race. They’ve put out a YouTube video. I guess I’m the prime example of why they think they’re going to win, but obviously, they aren’t. They are basically representing a failed socialist agenda of Obama. I think Americans are going to roundly reject them.
HH: Now Joe Miller, a lot of people want to know how you did this. Now the folks up listening to me on KCAM, one of my Alaska affiliates, 790, they’ll know. But explain to people how you managed to come up and win the Republican nomination from a sitting Senator.
JM: You know, it was a perfect storm of just a number of inputs. You know, of course we started getting on the national stage with having Governor Palin endorse, and then immediately, or soon thereafter, we had the Tea Party Express get engaged. We had Governor Huckabee lend his support. Of course, we had other radio talk show hosts nationally get engaged, we had local talk show hosts. And of course, then we had the incredible volunteer network here in Alaska. And the people on the ground here just worked this campaign day and night. And even though it’s a big state, it’s small, population-wise, and word of mouth, sweat equity, that’s really what makes the race up here. And that’s how I ran it, and that’s how I won it. [# More #]
HH: Now Joe Miller, I read your bio. I did not know until after you won that you’re a West Point graduate. What year did you get out of West Point?
JM: I graduated from West Point in ’89.
HH: Thank you for your service, and tell us about your military career.
JM: After I graduated from West Point, I chose Fort Riley as the station that I went to, and that’s 1st I.D. for those that are unfamiliar with Fort Riley. I deployed shortly thereafter to Desert Storm, and that was December of ’90, fought in the Gulf War that winter-spring of ’91, and earned a Bronze Star in connection with that, and then came back and subsequently got out, went to law school, came to Alaska.
HH: Now what kind of practice do you have up there?
JM: Just a general practice litigator. I’ve done some work for our local borough government here, but just pretty much run of the mill stuff. That’s what most of the attorneys do in Fairbanks. We’re a small town, you know, comparatively speaking. We’ve got, within our borough, probably about 100,000 people.
HH: Now tell us about your family?
JM: I have a great family. In fact, you know, that really is the reason why I’m here. I mean Kathleen, my wife, incredible gal, she’s a member of the Alaska Judicial Council. It’s the council that’s charged with selecting judges for the Governor to appoint. She, of course, is the mother of eight wonderful children. Those kids are just extraordinary, 100% behind the campaign. And of course, they were part of that volunteer network.
HH: You know, eight kids, that is a heck of a head start on a volunteer organization. You’re right about that.
JM: Especially in Alaska.
HH: What are their ages, Joe? What are their ages?
JM: They range from 21 all the way down to seven.
HH: Oh, that’s wonderful. Now tell us a little bit about your politics. If you had to pick someone who you resemble the most in the United States Senate, maybe there isn’t someone, but who do you think, you know, if people want to know, that’s probably the way I’ll be voting generally, who should they look to?
JM: I hate to draw comparisons. I mean, I’m a Constitutionalist. You have, basically what that means is if it’s not in the Constitution, the feds shouldn’t be doing it. You have the 10th Amendment that reserves those things to the states and the people, and that’s really where we’ve gone wrong as a nation. We’ve grown this huge entitlement state that you know, really it’s bankrupting the country, it’s creating control and power in the federal government that shouldn’t be there, and it’s taking away rights from us. And you know, I think the way out of this is to get back or to restore that Constitutional republic, the scheme that our founders intended. And it really, you know, people might think that’s kind of an extreme approach, but it’s not. It has bipartisan appeal in the sense that you know, if you want to create some sort of state government that represents your interests, well, you’re pretty much free to do that under the Constitution. But don’t let the feds do it.
HH: It’ll be a sad day when identifying yourself as a Constitutionalist is really understood to be extreme. But let’s run down some of those issues. You’re a Second Amendment guy, I assume?
JM: Yes, yes. Absolutely, I’ve been a life member since a kid of NRA, a benefactor member now. I was on the rifle team at West Point. I’m an avid hunter, long range shooter. I enjoy the sporting…with rifles. And I’m a little bit of a trap shooter, too.
HH: Okay, now in terms of the life issue, pro-life?
HH: All right, so in terms of the Interstate Commerce Clause, and the reach of that when it comes to Obamacare, I think I know what you’re going to say, but tell us anyway.
JM: Completely and totally misinterpreted, way beyond the scope of the founders’ intent. It’s been gamed to the extent that it’s allowed the Obama administration to do stuff like Obamacare. I mean, it’s just absolutely crazy, although I have heard that they tried to justify that under the Tax Power as well. But frankly, that is the means by which the Constitution has been grown into this, just, document that it really was never intended to be what it’s been construed to be now.
HH: Now Joe Miller, I want to figure out where you get your information from, because obviously, this is a conservative show. We read the blogs, we read all the newspapers, that’s my job. But what do you like? What do you read, both for relaxation, for pleasure, for news? Where do you get your stuff?
JM: You know, I was deep in Os Guinness’ A Time For Truth.
JM: I got interrupted, though, with the campaign. But you know, I don’t get a lot of time for recreational reading. The news comes online. I mean, I utilize a number of resources. Believe it or not, sometimes I look at CNN, I look at Newsmax, World Net Daily, I mean, you name it. The sources that are out there, we look at them – Washington Times, obviously. I’m a voracious reader of the news. I mean, I always have been. International events have always been a focal point for me. I’ve always been interested in what’s going on around the world and its impact on this country. Of course, national security issues, for me, are really at the top right now. I think that we face a lot of threats worldwide that we’ve got to be very, very cognizant of. And part of my concern along those lines is that when you’ve got radical Islam, that really would like to take down this country, if they succeed, have just one avenue of opening to this country, it could be cataclysmic to us. And so we’ve got to be very, very cautious on the national security front. And that’s one of the reasons, Hugh, that I’m so concerned about this government overextending itself. It loses focus on those enumerated powers, you know, securing us, keeping our military strong. Because we’re so spread thin with this entitlement state and over-expenditures, that it does not keep its focus on those things that keep us safe.
HH: Now Joe Miller, www.joemiller.us, America, www.joemiller.us. Go and help him, because this is going to be a unique voice in the United States Senate. But a lot of unique voices start out unique, Joe Miller. They get down to D.C., and they go native. They go Beltway. How are you going to stop that from happening?
JM: Well, I think that this is a message that falls way outside of what you heard coming from D.C. And again, that doesn’t mean it’s radical or extreme. It means restoration of the Constitutional republic, and according to the founders’ intent. But that really, you know, I think that message, believe it or not, Hugh, is going to get joined by some voices, new voices in D.C. And I believe that the future of even the Republican Party could be wrapped up in this, if it decides to embrace it. And that could be a movement that could push this country forward, get us back active economically, and get the country on track.
HH: I think you’re absolutely right. Last question, if you look at these committees, Judiciary, obviously, you’d get to talk the Constitution and originalism with these nominees, on Armed Services, you’d get a chance to protect the United States in its defense posture, what’s your priority when you get there, Joe Miller, in terms of the committee you want to work on, and the issues you want to tackle?
JM: You hit the top two. I would absolutely love to be on either of those, both of those. Frankly, you know, the reason that we’re at the point right now as a nation is because we’ve got activists on the bench. They’re permitted this growth of government that’s allowed the entitlement state to grab hold, and created this dependency that we have. And so that really is critical, that we get people in place that really do honor the Constitution, uphold their oath.
HH: Joe Miller, great to make your acquaintance. We’ll talk to you often between now and November 2nd. www.joemiller.us, America. You heard him. If you like what you heard, then support him. www.joemiller.us.