INTERVIEW: GA Senate Candidate Latham Saddler Talks Big Tech Censorship, Communist China, And Much More

During a special runoff election in 2021, radical Democrat Raphael Warnock won a Senate seat in the state of Georgia.

Warnock defeated Republican Kelly Loeffler, who was appointed after former Senator Johnny Isakson resigned with three years left in his term. Because of this turnover, Warnock will face another Republican opponent in November 2022.

One possible Republican challenger to Warnock is former Navy SEAL Latham Saddler, who announced his candidacy in April.

I recently had the opportunity to speak with Saddler on a variety of issues, including Big Tech censorship, the growing threat of Communist China, vaccine mandates, abortion, Iran, and much more.

Listen to the full interview via the SoundCloud embed, or read the transcript below.

Q: Can you tell me a little bit about your background and why you decided to jump into politics now?

SADDLER: So, I’m a proud native son of Georgia, was born in Atlanta, but my mom’s from a small town in south Georgia. I went to the University of Georgia for undergrad, then I went to Georgia Tech for grad school. 9/11 happened while I was at the University of Georgia, and obviously changed everyone’s life forever, and in my case, led me on a long journey to serving in the military as a Navy SEAL.

I spent my 20s working to get there, and deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan, and then after President Trump got elected, I got tapped to come up to his White House and serve as the Director of Intelligence Programs on the National Security Council, essentially managing our black ops portfolio up there. And I can tell you during our time up there, Frank, we put our adversaries on their heels, right where they belong.

And there’s, unfortunately, not a lot of that happening right now. Ended up transitioning out of the military for unique family reasons. I’ve got a twin brother with Down syndrome who’s going to come live with my wife and I and our two young sons. We’ve got a one year old boy and a four year old boy. And I came home to Georgia after the White House and was on the executive team of Synovus Bank here in Georgia as their chief of staff, and then 2020 happens.

And I think, as patriots, we all know that what has transpired in this country is just not us. I mean, we are so much better than the way we’re operating. And I view everything through a national security lens, and I’ve received all the briefings you can get in the situation room about what our adversaries are doing to harm us. And the stuff that I learned about China and their plans to overtake us, I mean, it keeps me up at night. And I look at the way we’re operating as a country, and we are operating in such a pathetic fashion right now, and it’s just not sustainable.

I mean, China’s four times our size, they’re hungry and focused and eager to overtake us. And we’ve got our heads in the sand here in America, and we’ve got a movement within our country that’s trying to push us down the river of socialism. And I look at those two factors, and as a father of two young boys, I think, they’re not going to have the American future that we’ve all enjoyed right now to date.

And I tell folks all the time, I would’ve never jumped in this race if things weren’t so dire and if I wasn’t a father of my two boys, because I refuse to let their futures be snatched out from under them, whether it’s from an enemy abroad or from this enemy within our country. So I jumped into the race in April, and it’s been an incredible experience so far. I mean, we’ve raised over $3 million to date. So, we’re doing incredibly well on fundraising. We’re batting 1,000, we’re tearing across the entire state of Georgia and batting 1,000 everywhere we go. And I can’t wait to knock Raphael Warnock right out of this seat.

Q: On China, with their development of hypersonic tech, and our own military being seemingly more focused on diversity and inclusion agendas, is there any particular legislation that you would push as a senator to make the United States more competitive with a growing China?

SADDLER: Oh, yes. I mean, this is the stuff that I stay up all night thinking of, and I can’t wait to get in that seat to put them on their heels. But you bring up something really important, which is, you’ve got our adversaries that are incredibly focused, and particularly, in the case of China, they look at us like a couple-hundred-year fad, and they view themselves as a 5,000-year dynasty. And they say, look, the 20th century where you all reigned supreme, that’s an outlier on the graph; we’re never going to let that happen again.

And they’re launching hypersonic missiles around the globe in low orbit and really advancing those critical technologies, which are very difficult to defend against, by the way. They’re doing that, and our Pentagon has been focused on a woke agenda and Critical Race Theory. And it’s the same with Afghanistan — people ask me what happened there? And I tell folks all the time, as a national security guy, what’s happening here is that our Pentagon is off.

It is the mission of the Pentagon to be the most lethal fighting force on the planet, to number one, prevent and deter wars. And then two, when them decisively if we actually had to go to war, and we’re doing the opposite of that right now, and there’s been no accountability whatsoever to our top brass. So, I mean, for starters in the United States Senate, as you know, you’ve got the ability with the key appointments that require advice and consent of the Senate. I would make sure we actually have real leaders in these roles that are going to prioritize our nation’s security, not prioritize a woke agenda. Number two, I would require — and I can’t wait to get up here and do this — I would require that the defense budget, as well as the intelligence community budget, at a minimum, 50% of that, 50% of those resources have to be geared toward the China threat. Right now, we’re nowhere near that, and that’s pathetic and it’s got to change.

And then this is probably more in the economic front, and my team laughed at me when I first told them this, but I’m dead serious — I think Americans need to understand what they’re buying when it comes to China. And we have all these goods that are labeled, “Made in China,” but they’re not correctly labeled. Every label should say, “Made in Communist China.” They’re proud communists, they’re not ashamed of it, and Americans really need to think through what we’re buying when we’re buying Chinese goods.

So, those are a few things that are on my agenda, and again, I’ve been up there. I’ve served on the National Security Council under President Trump. I’ve seen firsthand the weaknesses in our national security apparatus, even though we’ve got great folks doing great work for the country — those institutions are in desperate need to reform. And you can only do that from the United States Senate because they have control of the money and the authorities, but you’ve got to have people up there that actually understand this stuff. And I’m the only guy in my race that has that background.

Q: China’s behaving aggressively with Taiwan and across the world, and even though some people who are prominent in the United States, specifically like Enes Kanter Freedom, are pushing institutions to stop doing business with the regime. What do you think should be done as it pertains to companies like Nike and Apple who not only do business with communist China, but feed them money by doing so?

SADDLER: Yeah, I mean, I think we’ve got to start addressing this issue because I mean, heck, even in the case of Apple, I was reading that they’re even working with the Chinese Communist Party under their demands of Apple to censor apps over there and sensor content. I mean, they’re basically working, in certain cases, as a proxy for the Chinese Communist Party. And I think there needs to be repercussions for that.

Right now, they’re financially incentivized to do that stuff in China. But I think the number one thing we can do is shine the biggest spotlight in the world on this, and show people what American companies like Apple and Nike are doing when they’re getting in the bed with China, and the detrimental effects that has here at home; I think there needs to be incentives.

The other thing, too, is on manufacturing. I mean, China is on a mission to suffocate us economically, and we’ve stripped our manufacturing base in this country, in large part due to China. And we’ve got to incentivize American companies to bring back that manufacturing here at home. I mean, the fact that our critical supply chains depend on China; the fact that our pharmaceuticals depend on China. I mean, it’s a national security risk that we’ve put upon ourselves by bad policy, and we’ve got to start reshoring that stuff and bringing it back at home.

Q: You note on your website that you are a Navy SEAL and you’ve previously mentioned in this interview that you served as the Director of Intelligence Programs on the National Security Council under former President Trump. Can you talk about Iran and the latest developments there and what you would do as senator to try to stop what’s happening with regards to our policy toward Iran?

SADDLER: Yeah. Look, I appreciate the question because Iran has been a focus of mine for the majority of my career. I’m a fluent Farsi speaker, which is the language that they speak there. I learned the language as I was preparing to join the military. I think Iran is the greatest threat in the Middle East region. I was so proud to be a part of the Trump administration and the tearing up of the Iran nuclear deal.

I mean, all that did, I mean, the naive folks in the Obama administration who are now in all the key leadership roles in the Biden administration fundamentally view the world the way they want it to be rather than the way that it actually is. And that’s very dangerous when it comes to national security and decision making, and the Iran nuclear deal is a perfect example of that.

I mean, they thought, oh, the government will moderate, they’ll integrate into the international economy; that money will go to the people of Iran and they’ll prosper; and instead, that money went to the IRGC and the Quds Force to fuel their terrorist activities across the Middle East, and basically supercharge the regime. That money also went to advancing their ballistic missile program. I mean, what they totally miss in the deal is they only focused on the nuclear weapons aspect of a program rather than the delivery vehicles, which are ballistic missiles.

So, they moved out hard and fast to advance their ballistic missile technology. So, number one would be making sure that we do not get back in the Iran nuclear deal. And then number two, I think we need to bolster our allies in the Middle East. I mean, we’ve got a great partner in Israel, and we’ve got to bolster our allies in the region to make sure that Iran is contained in the Middle East because they’re not — folks that think they’re going to change course and become a moderate nation and integrate into the international community peacefully are kidding themselves.

Q: The Supreme Court might reverse, or at least gut, Roe vs. Wade this term, by the end of this term. And as I’m sure you’re well aware, some Western nations have incredibly disturbing laws that promote the termination of children in the womb following a Down syndrome diagnosis, and the U.S. doesn’t seem far behind. Can you talk about your beliefs on abortion and the pro-life movement?

SADDLER: Yeah. And I really appreciate the question because this one’s personal to me. I mean, look, Americans are very divided over the abortion issue, and I’ll tell you, I’m going to be a proud defender of the unborn. This is incredibly personal to me because I’ve got a twin brother, a fraternal twin, with Down syndrome, who’s the most amazing person that I’ve ever known. And the fact that people like my brother could be targeted, in some cases in the case of entire countries like Iceland, which I think is what you’re referring to, to try and get rid of Down syndrome people in their population, I mean, it’s just purely evil in my view.

And I’m a proud defender of life, and always will be. I’m also a father of a one-year-old and a four-year-old. And look, you either believe it’s a life or not, and science and technology are making it abundantly clear that that is life inside the womb. And I met my two sons, my wife and I met our two sons for the first time on the screen when we saw their heartbeat. And so I’m a proud defender of life, and I always will be.

Q: We’ve heard a lot over the last several years about the dangers of big tech. There have been a lot of hearings, but not much seems to have been done. There are some who want to eliminate section 230 and others who want to change it. There are others who want to go the anti-trust route, breaking up companies like Facebook. What are your thoughts, if you were to go to the Senate, on how you might help to pursue big tech and the issues of censorship?

SADDLER: This one’s interesting, too, because I launched my campaign on April 15th on Fox News, I was on Bret Baier’s show, and my Twitter following started taking off very quickly, and midway through my interview, Twitter shut me down, disabled my account for three straight days. So, I personally experienced being censored by big tech. So, folks that think that that’s not a real threat are not seeing the picture clearly. It’s a major threat today. And I think that we are overdue for a Teddy Roosevelt-style trust-busting in big tech.

And it feels weird as a conservative to say that, but at the end of the day, we as conservatives believe in a free market and a competitive market. And when Teddy Roosevelt was busting up the robber barons, he had simply a commercial case to do the trust-busting. In this case, it’s not just commercial; I mean, they have a monopoly over all of our data as American citizens. So, it’s not just commercial. They also have a monopoly over our First Amendment right of free speech.

And so, I think you could start with looking at some of these companies that not just have a monopoly over one industry, but have a monopoly over multiple industries. I mean, you look at Facebook with social media plus messaging. You look at Amazon with e-commerce plus the cloud. I mean, I think there’s a strong case that can be made for breaking up some of these tech firms. And that’s something I’m going to look into when I get up there.

Q: What is your position on vaccine or mask mandates? I know a lot of the mandates are being litigated right now. What would you do about them assuming that these mandates continue to be pushed into 2023 when you would be serving as a senator?

SADDLER: Yeah. I mean, I think these mandates are ludicrous. I mean, the fact that it’s even a conversation in America, it’s like, we don’t even — it’s like the people that are pushing this, they don’t value liberty anymore, it doesn’t seem, and that’s a precious thing that we have to preserve. Look, as far as the vaccine goes, the beauty of the vaccine is Americans have a choice. They have a choice to get the vaccine. And if it makes sense for them and their families, they should go and do it. If people make the decision that it doesn’t make sense for them, it’s their right to make that decision as well.

The fact that the federal government is trying to mandate this is just an encroachment on individual liberties, and it’s unconscionable to me. So that’s something I’m going to fight against fiercely. I hope that by 2023, if I have the privilege of being up there in the Senate representing my state of Georgia, I hope that this is not going to be an issue by then, but if it is, I’m going to fight it fiercely. I mean, even the mandates for vaccines of companies with employees over 100, I mean, it’s crazy.

All of these policies coming out of the Biden administration are crippling our country on every front. They’re encroaching on people’s liberties; they’re crippling our economy. I mean, you look at this scenario, and we’re almost a year into this thing. And I ask people all the time, what is one good thing that has come from Joe Biden being in office or Raphael Warnock being in office? One positive thing for the country? I mean, I talk about — I call it the Warnock bag of goods. I mean, he came in and sold Georgians a bag of goods, and there’s a lot of voter remorse about it now. And he did a charm offensive and got elected, but now we see what those bag of goods are. I mean, we’ve got a terrorist-run Afghanistan; we’ve got a weakened military and national security apparatus; we have an open southern border; we have proposed tax hikes for everyday Americans; we have inflation that’s running through the roof. Look at groceries, look at gas prices. My wife and I talk all the time. We’re still buying diapers; the price of diapers has skyrocketed — and who does this hurt most? Lower income Americans; the same folks that the Democrats claim they care most about.

I mean, their policies are atrocious. The problem that we have as conservatives is that we’re pretty terrible at messaging. We can stand firm on our policies all day, every day, but the Left finds clever ways to outflank us and beat us on messaging, and that’s got to stop. And that’s one of the missions in my campaign, especially as a next generation leader. I mean, I’m the youngest person in my race by far. I’m 38 years old; the average age in the United States Senate is 64 years old. We need fresh blood up there to set this country back on the right track. We need leaders who are actually going to have to live with their decisions for the decades to come. There’s very few people up there that are going to have to do this. I tell people all the time here in Georgia, I should have to look you in the eye 30 years from now, if I’m blessed to still be on this earth to by then, with decisions that I make in my first couple years as United States Senator. I mean, there’s hardly anybody that falls in that category.

So, we’ve got to have fresh blood up there that has the vision for the country and our state, and has the will to fight for this country because if we don’t get our act together quickly, we’re going to wake up in a very different in America, and again, that’s why I’m in this race, because I’m not going to let that happen.

Q: Can you talk about specifically why Warnock is as dangerous as many people say he is, and what makes you the best candidate to take him on as opposed to the other several candidates who are already in the race?

SADDLER: Yeah. I mean, I really appreciate this question. For starers, with Warnock, I mean, look, his voting record matches identically with Schumer and Pelosi. I mean, they made a case, Biden and Warnock, made this case to the people of Georgia that they were going to moderate and be this stabilizing force, and they’ve done a dead-heat sprint to the far-Left, and we’re feeling the effects of it right now. And that’s not what Georgians signed up for.

And again, you look at — people are hurting right now. I mean, they’re worried about their individual freedoms; they’re worried about even expressing free speech. I have moderates now that tell me, not just conservatives, Latham, I’m scared to express my real views in this country because I’m worried the woke mob’s going to come after me and dox me. I didn’t even know what doxing was till earlier this year. This is not America.

The woke America, that might be Warnock’s vision for America, but that’s not my vision for America, and that’s not Georgians’ vision for America, and he’s duped Georgians, and he’s going to be held accountable next year in this election. I can’t wait to get on the debate stage to do just that.

Why am I the guy to beat him? Why am I the best candidate in this race? A number of reasons. I’m the candidate that checks the two boxes that actually matter. I’m the only candidate that can actually beat Raphael Warnock in a general election in Georgia. And I’m the only candidate that has the experience to get up to Washington and actually serve effectively as Georgia’s next United States Senator. And why is that? I mean, most people don’t tout Washington experience, but I was up there in the Trump administration the first two and a half years. The first 18 months of it, I was running our country’s black ops portfolio and putting our adversaries on their heels where they belong. And Georgia has always had a national security expert in the Senate, all the way back to Sam Nunn and Richard B. Russell and others. And we’re missing that now. But then I became a White House fellow, and worked on domestic policy issues, and I worked on workforce development, and I was part of the team that got the First Step Act passed.

So I, at the national level, experienced Washington fighting for the right agenda, the America First policy agenda, and Georgia deserves to have that agenda back in Washington, and Georgia deserves to have a United States Senator that actually has the experience at the national level advancing those policies. And I’ll tell you, I send that message all across this state, and everybody’s getting in the boat.

I’m up against my childhood football hero, Herschel Walker. I love Herschel, he’s a fantastic football player, but this is not college athletics. These are very serious times for our country that require serious leadership. Celebrities are not going to bail us out. We’ve got to do the work ourselves, and it’s going to require real leadership, and I’m doing the work. I’m out-hustling everybody else in this race.

Herschel’s doing the Biden basement strategy. He doesn’t show up to debates; he doesn’t take questions whenever he rarely gets out on the trail; and he just moved over here after almost 30 years of living in Texas to be handed to United States Senate seat from Georgia — that’s not going to happen. And the people in Georgia that I come across, when they see that, that’s not what they want. They want an authentic, next generation, America First leader for this seat, and I’m the only candidate in this race that has that background.

Q: What do you see as the United States’ greatest ex-existential threat?

SADDLER: Externally, it’s obviously Communist China. I mean, they’re going to supplant us in the next 10 to 15 years [if] we stay on the track that we’re on, and it pains me as a patriot to say that, but we are not operating as a country that wants to be number one. I mean, we don’t just get to wake up every day and be number one, that has to be earned. And I think we need leaders that are going to carry that message and make sure this is an American 21st century, not at Chinese one.

But candidly, the biggest obstacle to making sure that this is an American 21st century is the existential threat right here at home. I mean, we have this woke movement that has made it hip and cool for our youth to hate the country, to not value the Constitution, to not value our history. And you can’t be a great country if your people don’t love you as a country — and that’s the biggest existential threat. You’ve got people in serious leadership positions, all the way up to the presidency right now, and including Raphael Warnock in the Senate, that want to transform the DNA of this country and turn it into a socialist country. And we all know what that outcome looks like.

So, I’d argue that’s our biggest threat, it’s right here at home, and then externally, our greatest threat is Communist China. They’re four times our size and they’ve got a mission. They’ve got a mission to overtake us, and they’re going to do it if we don’t get our act together.

Q: Is there anything that we haven’t touched on in this interview that you’d want readers or listeners to know about your campaign?

SADDLER: Yeah, I would just say for your listeners, I mean, you’ve got a wonderful national audience, and I would want your listeners to know that this United States Senate race in Georgia is the number one race next year for the Democrats to preserve this seat where we just lost it last year, and for we as Republicans to flip this seat. Rafael Warnock is raising money all across this country to defend this seat. Every conservative in the country needs to be looking out for this seat here in Georgia, and watching this race, and supporting the right candidate to actually win this seat back from Rafael Warnock next year. So, I would encourage your listeners to go to lathamsaddler.com and support us on this mission.

Our country is the most wonderful country on the planet. I’ve seen the rest of the world as a United States Navy SEAL overseas. I’ve seen what it looks like when you don’t have liberty, and liberty has to be earned, and it’s got to be fought for, and now we have to do it right here at home, and we need Country-First, America First leaders in Washington who are going to put our country back on the right track.

And the final thing I’ll say is really the mission of my campaign — it’s not just to win this U.S. Senate seat, it’s to bust open the gates for other America First patriots to step into this arena of politics and serve their country in public office, particularly in offices in Washington, D.C, because the fact that we don’t have our best and brightest up there is killing us, it’s killing our country.

And there are plenty of fantastic leaders in this country that are not serving in an office — and it’s for good reason. I mean, it’s the political arena, and it’s nasty, but we don’t have the luxury anymore. We don’t have the margin anymore of sending subpar leaders to make the critical decisions for our country. So, it’s my goal with my campaign that when we win this seat back from Rafael Warnock, my victory speech is going to be a call to service for any patriot that’s ever thought about serving their country in public office, take a look at what we’ve just accomplished. You don’t have to kiss rings; you don’t have to sell your soul; you don’t have to sell out to be a leader. One person cannot fix this country. We need a mass influx of fantastic leaders, and it’s the mission on my campaign to chart that pathway so that we can get a lot more strong leaders in Washington, and we all get up there and right this ship.

For more about Latham Saddler, you can visit his website here, or follow him on Twitter.

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