WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — KSN News sent a questionnaire to each candidate facing a challenger in the November general election. We have not made any edits to the candidate’s answers.

Biographical Information:

Patrick Schmidt

Currently in the Naval Reserves after 4 1/2 years of active duty as a Naval Intelligence Officer. I graduated from Tufts University with a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations. No previous political or community positions. Married to my wife Megan and we live in Topeka with our dog Teela. I am originally from Overland Park, KS where my mother still lives.

Campaign website/Facebook/Social Media:

Facebook: Patrick Schmidt for Congress
Twitter: PatrickforKS
Campaign Office: 519 SW Van Buren St Suite 100, Topeka, KS 66603

What are the top three things you think deserve your immediate attention in Washington, and what action would you take on them, including how you’d compromise with members of the other party?

For too many years Congress has worked to ensure that billionaires and corporations get all the rewards and working families pay the bills. Hard working Kansans deserve a tax code that helps them raise their family, an economy that rewards their hard work and a health care system that keeps them well, not bankrupting them. If elected, I will work tirelessly to ensure that hard-working Kansans are not left behind.

What should be done to fight inflation and fix the country’s economy?

Despite opposition from my opponent, Congress passed a bi-partisan infrastructure bill that will, in time, help ease the supply chain issues that are plaguing our economy. Recently, with opposition from my opponent, Congress moved to crack down on price gouging. We can tame inflation and return to a strong economy if we have the will to knock down the barriers keeping critical parts in short supply and if we send a strong message to multinational corporations that we won’t tolerate price gouging.

Share your thoughts on abortion rights and restrictions.

I believe the voters in Kansas made their voices heard on August 2. Extremists like my opponent have succeeded at ending federal protections for access to vital women’s healthcare protections. They will not stop until they have banned it across the entire country. I will stand firm against these extremists and ensure that women are not the victims of their sick political game that threatens their lives or their liberty and forces victims of violent crime to be further victimized by bearing the children of their rapists. I will stand firmly beside bedrock Kansas values and work tirelessly to ensure that women cannot be further victimized by the extremists among us.

What needs to be done about health care?

If elected, I will work to lower healthcare costs through expanding Medicaid in Kansas and extending care to 150,000 people statewide. I will also stand up to the pharmaceutical lobby, which has jacked up the price of common drugs like insulin to the point where people have to ration their supply to survive. I favor legislation that would lower prescription drug costs for millions, like the Lower Drug Costs Now Act. Additionally, I will work to bring more federally qualified health centers to Kansas, which provide quality care while saving taxpayers money.

Do you think we need immigration reform, and what changes would you support?

Dreamers deserve a path to citizenship and should not have to live their lives in perpetual limbo. We need to secure the border using the most cost-effective and humane methods, while still fulfilling our legal obligations pursuant to long-ratified treaties. I will work with anyone who wants to seriously address the situation and try to finally solve this problem.

What are your thoughts on election integrity in Kansas? Across the United States? Would you change the election process, and how?

I support any efforts to make the ballot box accessible to all in Kansas and across the country. I believe we should expand early voting and mail in ballots, same-day voter registration, and automatic registration.

Where do you stand on LGBTQ issues and rights?

I support the LGBTQ+ community and the Equality Act.

Share your stance on gun control/Second Amendment rights.

As a hunter and Naval reservist and life long gun owner I support the efforts underway in the US Senate to work to keep guns out of the hands of criminals who seek to harm others. I support the bi-partisan gun laws and if elected, will work within the Second Amendments boundaries to keep guns away from criminals.

What are your thoughts on climate change? What should Congress do about it, if anything?

I understand how Kansas can become the nation’s leader when it comes to renewable energy. In addition to advances in renewables, Kansas can make great strides in replacing the hundreds of lead pipes that have been poisoning Kansas kids for decades. As of today, over 60% of children in Kansas have high levels of lead in their blood. If elected, I will work to address climate change and help Kansas become the leader in wind and solar energy production to lead us to a more renewable energy future.