Ken Timmerman is hoping to unseat incumbent Rep. Chris Van Hollen in Maryland's newly configured 8th Congressional District, which now stretches from just outside Washington into more conservative areas of Frederick and Carroll counties.
"This is a stand up and be counted type of moment," Timmerman said. "I feel our freedoms are in jeopardy and it was time for me to stand up and defend them."
Timmerman, a journalist, fiction writer and political commentator, has lived and worked internationally, reporting from France, Egypt and Lebanon. He calls himself a "Middle East expert," and has worked for the House Foreign Affairs Committee. He is currently the lead investigator for a lawsuit against Iran on behalf of the families of Sept. 11 victims.
Timmerman has also served as a commentator for CNBC and as a contributing editor for both the conservative monthly magazine American Spectator and NewsMax Media, Inc.
"I've spent 30 years as an investigative reporter on the ground in many of the countries that you read about on the front page of the newspaper," he said.
Timmerman says his priorities as a congressman would be to cut federal government spending, create jobs and enhance national security.
"We have absolutely got to get spending under control," Timmerman said. "It's insane that we have run up $6 trillion of new debt in just three years. We are about to become Greece and I don't think many Americans would like that to happen."
Cuts across all government agencies would be necessary to rein in spending, Timmerman said. He added that job growth could come from reducing government regulations on businesses.
Timmerman, who espouses a pro-life platform, said he would propose funding cuts for groups such as Planned Parenthood that provide abortion services.
"I think government is not God," he said. "Government should not be in the position of making moral decisions or getting involved with people's moral beliefs. Funding of abortion is morally offensive to a large number of people who are living in the 8th District."
He is also committed to repealing the federal Affordable Care Act, which he said could be financially debilitating for business owners.
"Companies don't know what kind of health care costs they're going to be facing," Timmerman said. "This is creating a huge amount of uncertainty, which is creating a negative impact on business and the economy."