Pierce County Sheriff – Keith Swank

Municipal/Other Questionnaire

Candidate Info

Candidate Name:    Keith Swank
Position Sought:     Pierce County Sheriff
Are you an incumbent for this position?     Non-incumbent
Home Legislative District:     25
Are you a Democrat?     No

Campaign Info

Campaign Manager or Point of Contact:     Christine Jaworski
Website:     swankforsheriff.com
Facebook:     Keith Swank
Twitter:     @swank4america

Part I – Candidate Background

1. Please briefly describe your qualifications, education, employment, community and civic activity, union affiliation, prior political activity, and other relevant experience. Beyond your qualifications, what makes you the best candidate for this position or office? Please describe any specific background or unique perspective you offer and how those will help you accomplish your goals for the position sought. If possible, give practical examples.

I have a BS in psychology from the University of Washington. I was a police officer with the Seattle Police Department for 33 years. I worked my way through the ranks and retired as a captain 6/23. I was a member of two unions SPOG (Seattle Police Officers' Guild, and Seattle Police Management Association SPMA). I was a board member on SPOG and the VP for SPMA. I have run for congress, and I have worked on numerous campaigns. I am the only candidate with police command experience. I have hired, fired, and disciplined officers. I have negotiated contract as a union representative and as a representative for the city with other bargaining units. I am a national expert on de-escalation and crisis intervention, and I traveled the county teaching this to other agencies for the Obama Department of Justice.

2. What prompted you to run for this office?

The increase in crime and quality of life for our citizens prompted me to run for this office.

3. What steps are you taking to run a successful campaign?

I have a campaign team including campaign manager, consultants, coordinator, and volunteers. I am speaking with as many groups as possible for their input.

4. What are your campaign’s most important themes, issues, or priorities (three to five)? Share issues or priorities specific to the office that you’re running for.

I am going to address the increase in violent juvenile crime.
We are going to address quality of life issues.
We are going to provide the best training for the deputies so that our department is a leader in industry standards.
We are going to meet with our stakeholders and work on our relationships.

Part II – Yes/No Questions, please qualify your answer if necessary

1. Do you support steps to build a fairer economy through tax reform and progressive taxes as wealth increases?     Yes
Optional: Qualify Your Response to #1     I do think everyone should pay their fair share of taxes.

2. Do you support robust investment in publicly owned housing/subsidized housing for elderly and low-income individuals/families, and zoning changes to support such housing?     No
Optional: Qualify Your Response to #2     I think private companies can do a much better job. I worked in the government for almost 40 years. I saw all the waste, and I saw how some people got treated better than others.

3. Developer impact fees are allowed under the Growth Management Act. Should they be increased to help pay for needed improvements to our roads, parks, and schools?     No
Optional: Qualify Your Response to #3     Impact fees are passed on to the home buyer making homes even further out of reach for younger people and first time home buyers.

4. Do you support building a municipally owned and operated broadband system in your city or jurisdiction?     No
Optional: Qualify Your Response to #4     I would have to learn more about the proposal first before I would commit to an answer.

5. Do you support local investments to address climate change where applicable?     No
Optional: Qualify Your Response to #5     "Investments" mean taxes, and those taxes are passed on to groups who can least afford it making living even more difficult for them.

6. Do you support women’s unrestricted access to reproductive healthcare?     Yes
Optional: Qualify Your Response to #6     I agree with unrestricted access to reproductive healthcare, but I do not agree with unrestricted abortion.

7. Do you support laws regulating the purchase, ownership, and carrying of firearms?     Yes
Optional: Qualify Your Response to #7     I support the federal constitution and our state constitution. There are some people who should be precluded from purchasing, owning, and carrying firearms.

8. Do you support the right of workers to unionize and bargain, including public employees?     Yes
Optional: Qualify Your Response to #8     I was a union member for 33 years. I support freedom to choose to be in a union or not.


Part III – Free Response (Please answer at least four fully, and consider the additional three optional)

1. Why are you requesting Democratic endorsement? What aspects of the Democratic platform most resonate with you?

I am not necessarily seeking an endorsement. I would like to speak with the members and let them decide if they support my positions.

2. What public policy reforms do you support to achieve greater equity and inclusion for BIPOC and LBQIA+ individuals in our communities?

I believe in treating all people with dignity, respect, and under the constitution.

3. What steps do you think need to be taken to improve voter turnout and increase voter trust in our election process?

I think we need to make election day a national holiday and give everyone 24 hours to vote at their polling location. If people want or need to mail-in, then they should request a mail-in ballot. I think many people from all political ideologies do not have faith in our system. However, I do think Pierce County does a good job.

4. What important local issues have you worked on (or taken an interest in) that you feel aren’t getting enough attention from elected leaders and the local media?

Litter and graffiti are every where, and they are only increasing.

5. Please list at least three specific, concrete actions you would support to ease the homelessness crisis.

Drug treatment (real drug treatment)
Enforcing theft
Mental Health treatment

6. What safety, law, or justice issues are currently facing your jurisdiction, and how will you address them?

Juvenile crime is at an all-time high. Violent crime is through the roof. Violent people need to be held accountable.
Overdose deaths are at an all-time high. Drug dealers need to be prosecuted and serve long sentences.

7. What are the transportation/transit challenges which face your jurisdiction and how would you address them? What role does green energy play in your proposed solutions?

The legislature just increased tolls to up to $15 on the toll roads. This is devastating to low income families.

By typing my name below, I declare under penalty of perjury the foregoing is true and correct.

Printed Name:     Keith Swank
Date (mm/dd/yy):     03/14/2024

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