U.S.A. –-(Ammoland.com)- Michelle Mortensen was a rarity in television news. During her 18 years in the media and 6 years at the Las Vegas CBS affiliate, KLAS-TV, Channel 8, she was a conservative in a liberal field. She worked tirelessly day in and day out to help the average Nevadan that was taken advantage of by shady businesses.
Then she walked away from it all. Last November the Reagan Republican announced she was running for Congress in Nevada's Third Congressional District. What would cause someone to walk away from an 18-year career in TV? Why would she want to be a Congresswoman? I had to find out.
By chance, I was able to find out by talking to Mortensen directly for the Ammoland reader.
John: What is your background?
Michelle: I am a lifelong conservative who grew up in the San Francisco, Bay Area.
I grew up in a small suburb of the big city and attended the same Christian school from the time I was 2 years old until I graduated from high school.
From there, I went to SMU in Dallas, Texas where I got two degrees. One in political science and another in broadcast journalism. I always had a desire to be in news and politics. I started working for political campaigns and for politicians at the age of 16, but after graduating college, I decided to put politics on hold and pursue TV news.
My first job was in Louisiana. From there, I anchored and reported the news in Arkansas, Texas, New York, Vermont, New Hampshire and Nevada. During the last 6 years of my career, I was based in Las Vegas where I ran the 8 On Your Side Consumer Division. While at the CBS affiliate in Las Vegas, I focused exclusively on consumer advocacy. From 2011 to November 2017 I solved Nevadan's problems. I refunded locals more than $1.4 million from various scams, frauds, cons and more.
At my time in TV news, I exposed shady websites that sold guns and ammo nationwide to unsuspecting folks, taking their money from purchases but never delivering. I taught viewers who to survive home invasions. I got families out of credit card debt in one year through my Debt Destroyer program. I helped people cut through bureaucratic red tape when they needed medicine, medical care, social security benefits and more. I have always fought for people. I have always been on the side of the people. I've always been an advocate and a proponent of truth. That's why I feel I am the ideal person to run for Congress. We need politicians who know how to get things done and tell the truth.
I am also a wife and mother. I am married to an ordained pastor. I met Bob in Vermont when I started attending his church. We got married in 2007. We have two little girls ages 6 and 3.
John: Why did you get out of TV media?
Michelle: It was time. I had a wonderful 18-year career where I was on TV every single day. I've covered some of the most important events of our lifetime. I've interviewed Presidents, Senators, Congressman and more. That said, a few years ago I noticed that local news was changing. It was no longer about revealing truth and holding the powerful accountable. I got into news because I believed it was a noble profession, but that has changed.
John: What can be done to fight against the liberal bias in the mainstream media?
Michelle: First and foremost, we need conservative politicians and leaders who aren't afraid to talk to the media. I can tell you from first-hand experience most of them are. And the ones that are willing to speak often are the worst communicators. It's time we elected people who know how to communicate. It is time we elect people who know how the media works. Quite honestly, there is no one more qualified to tackle this, than me.
John: What made you decide to get into politics?
Michelle: I always knew I would get into politics. I worked for campaigns and politicians all throughout high school and college. One of my degrees is in politics. I have been telling people since I was 11 I would be a TV journalist and one day a politician. I'm a lifelong conservative. Kind of that Alex P. Keaton type. I've always been focused on politics.
I chose now because we need better quality candidates on the ballot. We need people of character and integrity who knows how to fight and get things done in Washington. We can no longer allow bad candidates to ruin our party. It was time for someone to rise up. We the people want new blood, fresh faces. We are hungry for politicians who tell the truth and are transparent.
I've been an open book my whole life, and TV audiences around the country know, I tell it like it is and I get things done. Isn't that what you are looking for in a politician today? It's what I am looking for. I had to watch politicians lie every time they were interviewed. They'd make promises during election cycles and then break them once in office. Enough is enough. If you want change .. then be the change.
John: What is your stance on the second amendment?
Michelle: It is a right, not a suggestion. Plain and simple. I will defend your right, my right, to bear arms with all of my being.
John: Do you support a new “assault weapons ban”?
John: How would you secure the border?
Michelle: We need a wall. In some places, we need a fence. In others, we need more border patrol agents. The president calls it a wall system now. That's not as sexy as saying “Build that wall” but it is far more accurate. We can't build a wall in water. We need to do everything we can to secure the border. Ronald Reagan knew it. That's why in 1989 he said he envisioned the bright and shining city on a hill as a city with walls. And those walls have doors.
I love that.
That means the doors are open for people to come in legally. That's what we want. We need to address this issue.
Democrats know we need the wall too. In 2006, Senators Obama, Clinton, and Schumer all voted for the secure fence act. Securing the border wasn't a dirty word back then. It only became one when Trump got on the scene.
John: Do you think the federal government should defund sanctuary cities?
John: America has a crumbling infrastructure. What would be your plans to address that?
Michelle: A centralized problem with American transportation policy is the federal government's outsized role in matters of state and local transportation. The federal government should be focused on ensuring safety, supporting research, preserving the intercity highway system and supporting mobility for low-income travelers.
We need less government intrusion and regulation. We should be empowering state and local governments, along with private investment to improve our current infrastructure plan.
Did you know that a large portion of the highway trust fund goes to building new highways and transit systems? But little, if any, is used to maintain the systems we currently have in place. That money should be used to maintain and improve what we have and let the private sector or states focus on building the new and improved.
Our current highway system is really the best route to existing communities. The government's role should be on keeping them safe and functional. We could also further empower local governments, giving them a say in how maintenance dollars are spent, with highway block grants.
Right now, federal transit dollars often go to rail projects, but in most communities, like ours, the money could be better spent on buses. We need to give the people a say in local transportation issues. Mass transit subsidies and transportation vouchers could very well pave the way to serving more people in our community. Right now, too many people, especially seniors, are unable to get to point A to point B because we don't have enough resources in place.
The more money we pump into infrastructure improvements, the more jobs we create, as well. A focus on infrastructure ultimately benefits all Americans.
John: The Affordable Care Act is a disaster. Should it be fixed, or should it be repealed?
Michelle: In 2013, Americans were lied too. President Obama told us his health care plan would lower costs and provide more patient care to Americans. He said quote, “If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep it.” Politifact dubbed that one sentence the biggest lie of the year.
The Affordable Care Act is affordable in name only. Premiums have skyrocketed. Many families in Southern Nevada can barely afford insurance, and they certainly can't afford to get sick on the awful plans from which we must choose. Worse yet, American seniors were harmed by this awful plan. Democrats stole $716 Billion dollars from Medicare to pay for the ACA. Now, it is estimated Medicare will be insolvent in just 10 years.
ACA also hurt our most vulnerable patients reliant on Medicaid. This is not simply a talking point for people in favor of repeal and replace, but fact! While serving our community as a consumer advocate for KLAS, I helped several families and children get the surgeries, medication, and wheelchairs they needed that Medicaid refused to provide, simply because the money wasn't there. Countless families shared with me the struggles they faced getting doctors and hospitals to even see their children on Medicaid because the services required were always dubbed too costly. Simply put, Medicaid isn't helping patients, it isn't helping doctors meet the needs of sick people, and it's hurting our state.
Solving our healthcare crisis won't be easy, but we desperately need reform. You don't need the government telling you what type of healthcare you require. You should be able to pick the plan that works best for you. It is time we gave power back to the people to make their health care decisions. It's time the people who need quality care get it. Too many people are being left behind thanks to ACA, and we cannot allow that to happen any longer. We can no longer put our heads in the sand and act like everything will just work out. Lying to the American people must stop. We must tell the truth and bring solutions. We don't need government run healthcare or insurance run health care. We need patient-focused health care.
When I am elected to Congress, I will always advocate for quality patient care and to work with both sides for comprehensive and affordable reform.
Michelle Mortensen's campaign website
Michelle can be followed on Twitter at @Tell_Michelle_ or on Facebook
About John Crump
John is a NRA instructor and a constitutional activist. He is the former CEO of Veritas Firearms, LLC and is the co-host of The Patriot News Podcast which can be found at www.blogtalkradio.com/patriotnews. John has written extensively on the patriot movement including 3%'ers, Oath Keepers, and Militias. In addition to the Patriot movement, John has written about firearms, interviewed people of all walks of life, and on the Constitution. John lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and sons and is currently working on a book on the history of the patriot movement and can be followed on Twitter at @crumpyss or at www.crumpy.com.