Editor’s note: For Hawaii’s Aug. 9 primary, Civil Beat asked candidates to answer some questions.

The following came from John Roco, one of four Republican candidates for the U.S. Senate. Other candidates include three Democrats, two nonpartisans and one Libertarian.

Go to Civil Beat’s Elections Guide for general information, and check out other candidates on the Primary Election Ballot.

Name: John P. Roco

Office: U.S. Senate

Party: Republican

Profession: Counselor

Education: M.A., Loma Linda University; M.A., Lewis & Clark College; B.A., University of Washington

Community organizations: Saint Damien Advocates, founder 2011; Knights of Columbus, joined 2012

John Roco

John Roco

1. Why are you running for the U.S. Senate?

I am running because there are many in Hawaii who feel they were left out and their voices not heard especially for the special session to “quickly pass a bill.”   Religious freedom is an issue now often ignored, especially with things like “Pono Choices” and “Common Core” being forced/imposed on the general public.

2. Do you believe climate change is real? If so, what can the United States do to control carbon emissions?

I believe in research; there is too much “agenda driven” research.  I believe in research, but also know what goes on behind studies being made.  I believe more comprehensive research will show us the way.

3. Where do you draw the line between the government’s national security needs and the privacy of its citizens?

There was too much of “internal justification” for getting data on people too easily and too comprehensively. Our rights in the United States of America to privacy, the pursuit of happiness should not be infringed.

4. Under what circumstances should America go to war?

There are ways of tactfully dealing with issues and using our strength in meaningful manners to prevent war. This should be explored.

5. Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid — how should the government continue to support these entitlements? Are reforms necessary?

These are the fabric of our society but we must find ways to ensure these survive for those working now who have paid into the system their whole lives. I would like to explore ways to ensure these continue.

6. Congress has struggled in recent years to reach agreement on budget deficits, the national debt and spending in general. What would be your approach to fiscal matters?

There must be dialogue between people, between parties, and for the common good. We must see each other, across party lines and find the common good/goals we can unite and work towards together.

7. It has been difficult to bridge the partisan divide in Washington lately. How would you make a difference?

I see good in people. I have my values, but I have humility. I know we all are human — trying to do the best for Hawaii, for the United States; only with true humility to our humanity can we see eye to eye.

8. What is your policy on immigration?

There are unintended consequences to what some see as “doing the right thing,” as we see now with blockades of unescorted children trying to come to America. We should follow the laws on the books.

9. What is your view of the role of the U.S. military in the islands?

This is a presence we have militarily that should be proud and must be maintained with strength to preserve the peace that we can.

10. What other important issue would you like to discuss here?

“Let Every Child Deserve a Family” Act is a bill with support of 1/5 of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House approximately. This bill would close all religious non-profit foster care and adoption agencies who do not place children with homosexuals. Father Damien and Mother Marianne cared for orphaned leper boys and girls. If this bill were in place then, they would not have been allowed to do their saintly deeds. This bill is pushing things too far, just as “Pono Choices” and “Common Core.”