Alden Johnson is a Libertarian candidate for Mississippi’s 4th Congressional District, a seat currently held by Republican Rep. Steven Palazzo. He will be on the ballot for the midterm elections on Nov. 8, 2022. The Mississippi Free Press sent the following questionnaire to all Mississippi congressional candidates. We are are presenting the answers as we received them with only light edits.
What are your policy proposals for education?
I propose to remove standardized testing. It’s my opinion that it causes too much undue stress to both the educators and students.
What are your policy views when it comes to guns, gun violence and mass shootings? What specific gun regulations do you support, if any?
Mass shootings are heartbreaking. My heart goes out to all those who have grieved and are currently grieving. As for my opinion on firearms in general, there is a fact that cannot be ignored; prohibitions do not work. I support firearm ownership and oppose further regulation. I also believe that rights are not privileges. I believe that felons should have the right to protect themselves and their families via firearm ownership after serving their sentence. If individuals are safe enough to be released, then they should have their rights restored. This includes the right to vote.
What are your criminal justice policies and your ideas regarding police violence and brutality?
I propose to end no-knock warrant raids, end qualified immunity, end civil asset forfeiture, and hold police accountable when they violate rights. Police brutality seems to be an everyday occurrence. We currently punish taxpayers by using tax money to cover court litigations and settlements for police brutality. Many medical professionals carry their own liability insurance. Why can’t the police?
What will you do to improve health-care quality and access in Mississippi, including for mental health?
I’m an advocate for the “Direct Primary Care” healthcare model. Insurance companies have inadvertently raised the cost of healthcare beyond reason. Removing the stigma around seeking mental healthcare is paramount.
What is your position on abortion access and what sort of federal legislation, if any, would you support related to abortion? Please describe any penalties you would support for those who obtain abortions.
I don’t support the government attempting to legislate morality. Whether it’s cannabis, abortion, etc. I would support any legislation to protect abortion access. I oppose any penalties for those seeking abortions and for those performing abortions. It’s not my business, nor is it the government’s business.
Please list any forms of contraception that you believe should be banned, including birth control pills, Plan B/the morning-after pill, IUDs or others.
I oppose any attempt to ban any form of contraception including emergency contraception, IUDs, etc.
What are your ideas for improving our voting and election systems?
I fully support alternative voting methods. My preferred method would be ranked choice voting. This system allows voters to vote for their preferred candidate and removes the fear of “wasting a vote.”
What is your view on systemic racism and taking its impacts into consideration when crafting policy?
There is no question that racism still exists. Past policies such as making the penalties for possessing “crack cocaine” much harsher than possessing powdered cocaine were unquestionably put in place to target specific demographics. I’ll ask myself a question when proposing, or before supporting any legislation. “What consequences could this legislation potentially have?”
What proposals do you support regarding the environment and climate change?
I’m an advocate for nuclear energy. Our U.S. Navy fleet of submarines and ships have been nuclear powered for decades. Nuclear energy and propulsion have come a long way in terms of efficiency and safety.
What are your policy views on our nation’s immigration system?
It’s broken to say the least. Anyone who leaves everything behind to work hard and to provide for their family in a foreign land isn’t an enemy of mine. I propose a streamlined immigration system like what we used to have at Ellis Island.
What are your views and policy ideas related to LGBTQ rights?
I support the LGBTQ community and consider myself an ally. I oppose the fact that federal tax dollars are currently being used to support “private adoption agencies” that continue to discriminate against same-sex couples looking to adopt. I am going to propose legislation that would remove taxpayer funding from any “private organization” including “private universities” that are allowed to discriminate.
What are your views and policy ideas related to the rights of people with disabilities?
Individuals with disabilities are still individuals. I don’t have any currency policy plans regarding this subject but would listen and be open to any suggestions.
What changes, if any, do you support making to federal marijuana laws?
The war on drugs has failed. I’m a cannabis advocate and have promised to propose legislation to remove cannabis from the controlled substance list and to release nonviolent cannabis offenders from prison. I’ll be the first one to smoke a joint with my constituents to celebrate.
What are your economic policy ideas?
Free the market. End corporate welfare and end taxpayer funded bailouts. The government shouldn’t be deciding which businesses fail and which ones succeed. I also oppose tariffs which are nothing more than a hidden tax on consumers.
What is your vision for addressing our infrastructure needs?
Full transparency regarding federal infrastructure contracts would ensure companies are being held responsible for shoddy work and would reward the better companies. The fact that Domino’s Pizza did a better job at paving roads than our own government tells me that it’s time to try something different.
What other policy proposals, if any, do you have that we did not ask about?
I will file legislation to install term limits at the federal level. No more than 6 years for Representatives, and no more than 12 for Senators. I will also be hosting a quarterly town hall for my constituents to express grievances and to ask questions. I will be serving no more than 6 years. I will be putting my career as a firefighter on hold to represent the 4th District. I’m committed to finishing out my career in the fire service after representing the people.
Tell us anything else about yourself that you think voters ought to know.
Please reach out to me via social media if you have any questions. It may take a few days, but I’m committed to answering questions related to my platform, policies, and my personal stances regarding current issues.
I’ll be on the General Election ballot in November. You won’t find my name on either Primary ballot.
Alden Johnson Bio
Congressional District: 4th (Incumbent is Rep. Steven Palazzo)
Profession: Firefighter/EMT Rank: Lieutenant
Location: Petal, MS