Dan Ball is one of three Republican candidates hoping to unseat Democrat Raul Ruiz for the 36th Congressional seat.
He is the divorced father of a 10-year-old daughter, Avery, and shares joint custody with his ex-wife, Dena Ball.
Ball sat down with Uken Report this week in Palm Desert for an extensive interview. Here are five takeaways.
Uken Report (UR): Did you vote for Donald J. Trump?
Ball: Yes, I voted for Donald Trump. I voted for President Trump because I didn’t want to see more establishment candidates in that office again. I truly felt that Hillary Clinton would be another establishment candidate who was bought and paid for. I’m sorry, but 30, 40 years of all these theories, conspiracies about her, the foundation, and her husband, whatever. I’m sorry, I still believe where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Maybe they’re just better than other politicians at covering up their dirty trail. I could not, in good conscience, vote for someone like that who would just keep the status quo in D.C. when we all know it’s broken.
Did I agree with a lot of the rhetoric Trump used during the campaign trail? No. Have I agreed now that he’s 10 months in with a lot of the rhetoric and his tweets that have been divisive? Hell no. I had to explain to my 10-year-old daughter why the president called football players sons of bitches. I shouldn’t have to explain to my 10-year-old why the president, who is supposed to be this leader of the free world and try to portray unity, I shouldn’t have to explain to my kid why he said that. So, I disagree with a lot of the things that’s come out of his mouth and his Twitter account.
However, in the same respects, he has been following through on some of the campaign promises which attracted me to him, which were getting Congress to work. If you listen to what I’ve said the last hour, obviously you know that’s the only reason I’m running is to try and get Congress to be public servants again, and work for the people.
UR: What qualifies you to be a US congressman?
Ball: Because I haven’t been a congressman or held office before. How about that? That’s something you won’t hear from anybody, right? Let’s be real. These career politicians, I don’t think the Founding Fathers- and somebody just read a statement the other day. I was at a meeting and somebody read a statement from Washington about the parties. Washington, 240-some years ago, was talking about how, if we allow parties and the corrupt men that run them to take over, it would be the downfall of our democracy.
I forget exactly what the quote was from Washington, but isn’t it funny he wrote that 200 and some years ago and we’re now looking at it face to face. We’re seeing the corruptness of these parties and the men and women that run them, and the people behind the scenes that run them. Let’s be real. I don’t think you have to be a conspiracy theorist to now finally realize that big corporations and banks are running these parties, and that certain people want to keep these parties in control, no matter what party it is.
You know who’s not in charge? Us. They’re supposed to work for us. We’re supposed to be in charge of them, not the other way around. That’s what infuriates me. For the last 20 years, I’ve been biting my tongue on that set because I couldn’t say what I wanted to say, what I’m saying to you now.
Now I’m risking it all. I may never be able to go back to TV because of the statements I make. I may be shunned by friends and certain people in this valley I call home because I’m now outspoken about what I believe in. But you know what? I don’t think I will be.
I think the majority of Americans and people who live in this district feel the same way I do. They are upset, they are sick and tired of party politics, and they want to hire someone who they can trust. Who’s going to go in there and have their best interests in mind when they write legislation and when they cast a vote, and that’s my experience.
My experience is, I’ve lived here now since 1996. I know the issues that we’re facing. This is my experience on why I think I’m the best candidate. I’ve lived here. I’ve worked here. I’ve worshiped here. I’ve raised funds here for charities. I’ve promoted local businesses through television and social media. I’ve sold homes here to help the economy. I paid my taxes. I’m raising my daughter. These are my qualifications to go be a congressman. Plus, I know how to serve because as I told you before, 24 years of my life has been service, in the military and in the communities I told the news in. It’s all been service.
UR: Who recruited you to run?
Ball: No one recruited me. If they would have recruited me, I probably wouldn’t have responded and maybe even ran, if a party would have called me and said will you run? Because I’m not doing it for a party. I’m doing it for me, my family, and the residents of the 36th District. This valley has done so much for me and my family, and it’s my home now.
UR: How long have you lived in Palm Desert?
Ball: I moved to the valley the first time December of ’96. That was in the La Quinta Cove. … I’ve been here on and off for 21 years now. Worked at all three networks. City-wise, between the homes I’ve owned, and the condos and apartments I lived in, I’ve lived in Palm Springs, Cat City, Palm Desert, Indio and La Quinta. I’ve lived in five of the nine cities.
(UR) So, why did you leave KMIR in February?
Ball: I don’t know how much I’m allowed to talk about it because it was sealed on why I left.
But I’ve been telling people because I have nothing to hide, and I think that’s the biggest problem with politics today is too many politicians try to hide their background or hide their actions while they’re in office, and then it comes up and blows up in their face. The bottom line is in January, the station came to me, management, and said they were going to change my shift to nights starting March 1st. I said, “That’s impossible. I can’t move to nights.” They wanted me to work a 2:30 to 11:30 shift…
… On February 7th, it’s a hard shift and I slept through my alarm. Three days later, I was given my walking papers. You draw your own conclusions on why I was let go. There were no other reasons. I’ve seen all kinds of the little bloggers online saying different chitty-chatty things about why they think I’m no longer there. It came down to a contract dispute.”