My name is Steven David Hughes, and I am running for U.S. Senate to represent the state of Tennessee.
I am a life long Tennessee resident living my whole life in and around Chattanooga. I was born here, I live here, I work here and I am raising my family here. I am a proud Tennessean and I love our state immensely.
Understanding a candidate's values allows the voter to understand how they will serve (lead) in their prospective position. I have always thought too little time and effort was spent understanding a person and how they would make the decisions we elect them to make. The media and the candidates are too quick to print cliff notes, talking points, and headlines missing the details that make a candidate tick. With that in mind, one of the hallmarks of my campaign is to be transparent.
Aside from being a Tennessean, I am a Christian, husband, father, American and friend. In that order. My faith in Jesus Christ is the driving force in my life. He has sustained me through the darkest valleys I have walked through. My relationship with Jesus Christ is personal, deep and animates my desires for service. That relationship, however, will not be used as a campaign tool. I am a follower of Christ and this gives you a glimpse into who I am and it is for that purpose, I express my faith.
There is no greater relationship I have in my life than the one I have with my wife. She is my best friend, she has walked through fire with me, endured struggles, endured ME! and she is the most authentic, compassionate, caring human being I have ever met. I married up! The greatest blessing I have ever received is the gift of my wife, her friendship, and the opportunity to live my life with her.
Throughout our nearly sixteen year marriage, we have been blessed to have children. We had a plan...and that plan was not in the cards. We were a typical couple hoping for the American dream and 2.5 kids planning on having a typical, boring life. Our first son was born almost fourteen years ago, and after that experience only a fool would have had more children. He was born premature, struggling to survive, and had numerous complications. We would not be out of the woods with him, health wise, for over a year.
Then we had our first daughter. I credit her for saving my life. It was on the day we planned to tell my father of his incoming second grandchild that he passed away. It was the highest of highs, to the lowest of lows. She blessed my life and does every day.
We would go on to have six more children. If you are keeping score, that is eight children. The role of father drives me to make the sacrifices required to develop our children into responsible adults. We put a premium on understanding consequences. Consequences for not doing what you are supposed to, and consequences for doing the right thing and being rewarded. We are blessed with a dynamic group of children, each unique in their qualities, and that fills my life with great joy.
I believe the United States is its strongest when we support and encourage families. The family is the thread of our society that holds everything together. Supporting, encouraging, and sustaining families must be foundational as the fallout from failing families kills our communities.
Strong families create responsible citizens. Responsible citizens create and maintain community. Communities look after each other and support one another. Strong communities work together to build bold initiatives that enhance the quality of life in our cities. Those thriving cities build a network that support the necessary growth required for a state to flourish.
I have experienced this in Chattanooga and know it to be true. There is no "perfect" example, but there is strong evidence this works and with local leadership with support from the state and private citizens in growing job opportunities, my experience has confirmed this concept.
In the last thirty years I have seen a hard slant towards campaigns driven by personalities. The idea that a person would be a good candidate for whatever office because they have the right "pedigree" and meet the stereotype of a politician, has given us what we have: a 72% disapproval of congress. We elect insiders, successful businessmen, and political celebrities when what we need is a servant.
These personalities do not address the civic contract, the rule of law, a defense of the republic, and the restoration of power back to the states. My political ambitions are not driven by creating a political career, they are driven by purpose and that purpose is to restore the power back to the states that belongs with the state and end the soft tyranny of centralized government.
As a citizen it is treasonous for me to support anyone who would not advocate decentralizing power in respect to honoring the citizens of every state. Every time we cede power to the Federal Government, we lose another piece of our Republic and begin the descent in to a democracy. We are not a democracy, we are a Republic. This system is the best hope for mankind as a system of governance to allow for the prosperity of its citizenry.
Open, honest, and accountable. These are things found in the bonds of strong friendship. Most people go through life claiming one or maybe two close friends and being surrounded by acquaintances. I am blessed to have several close friends, mentors, and leaders who support me through my life.
Through those relationships I have learned what it means to be a solid friend that can be counted on. I have learned that through some success and some failure. These concepts, this framework, bleeds into other areas like partnership and service.
The idea of the campaign is to be a "Good and faithful servant" by being open, honest and accountable. I am not here for me, I am here for us.
Defend the Constitution of the United States, restore the Republic, and resolve the residual issues that have plagued our great nation for years through a willingness to sacrifice life, career and honor for the betterment of the constituency for the State of Tennessee.