Tim's Guiding Principles

A summary of Tim’s positions on key issues facing South Dakota and the nation.  For more policy and position detail, visit Tim on the Issues and Tim’s Promises to South Dakota.

Tim Bjorkman, former circuit court judge 2007-2017
Tim Bjorkman: Former Circuit Court Judge, 2007-2017

Guiding Principles

There is nothing fundamentally wrong with America that we cannot solve. We just need new managers in Congress who are willing to work together and push past the special interests.


The Role of Government

I share Abraham Lincoln’s philosophy of the role of government: “The legitimate object of government, is to do for a community of people, whatever they need to have done, but cannot do, at all, or cannot, so well do, for themselves in their separate and individual capacities.”


The Need for Reform of Congress

We need leaders of conviction willing to stand up to the political powers in DC and the special interests who control them. I will stand up to them – alone if necessary. And you can’t stand up to the special interests if you take their money. That’s why I accept NO special interest or PAC money; I am beholden only to the people of South Dakota.



I have a deep commitment to making families economically strong again. The family is the nucleus of our democracy, and if the nucleus isn’t healthy, democracy as a whole will suffer. We need to reflect the important role of family in our laws, including affordable healthcare, the chief economic drag for many families, how we tax families, and how we care for the vulnerable in our communities, especially children. We have to remember in our legislation that in a real sense they are all our children and we need to work to ensure each child has a fair shot at a decent life.


Economic and Educational Opportunity

We need to again create an environment in which each person has a seat at the table of opportunity, because our nation works best when it works for all of us.


Criminal Justice Reform

Crime’s biggest enemies are a stable home, an education, and a job skill. We need to address addiction and the untreated mental illness that so often accompanies it as a national health crisis and not as a ticket to prison.



I stand for affordable healthcare for every American –it’s the right thing, morally, and the conservative thing, economically. I will stand up to Big Pharma and Big Insurance and support a law that allows adults of any age the choice to either buy coverage through Medicare or continue with private coverage. This is known as the Medicare Option.


Rural Life

Our small towns and farms and ranches are still in many ways the lifeblood of our state. These communities continue to raise children who accomplish great things across our state and nation and they’re worth fighting for. In fact, Kay and I raised our four sons in rural South Dakota.


I promise to cross-train every member of my congressional staff in

economic development for South Dakota communities and main streets.


Tax Laws

Tax law must begin with certain fundamental principles:

1) It is fundamentally unjust for the same amount of income to be taxed at different rates

2) Income necessary to live on should not be subject to income tax

3) Loopholes that benefit only a certain group – such as the very affluent – are unjust

4) Tax policy should be designed primarily to raise the necessary revenue for the government to function.


Family Farms

Family farms are the heart of South Dakota and deserve our support:

I stand with producers, not “Big Ag”or their PACs and special interest money;

I support Country of Origin Labeling (COOL);

I strongly oppose meatpackers owning and slaughtering their own livestock in unfair competition with family producers;

I oppose the ability of meatpacker monopolies to control prices.


Working Americans

We need to respect those who work by paying them a living wage. We need to develop a work ethic in those who have not learned one. Too often, people who work hard every day feel like they’re losing ground and they need a fighter to ensure they get a fair shake on taxes. Those who work by the sweat of their brow should not pay higher tax rates than those who make money by investing.



We must be committed to serving our Veterans as faithfully as they have served us.


Our Children

I am pro-life for the whole of life. I am convinced that we have not done well protecting vulnerable children on both sides of the birth process. I believe the way forward for our nation is to again establish a respect for vulnerable young life, and parents who raise children need to be supported in their efforts to raise them in safe and dignified settings. Healthcare is a key component. We are not protecting children if their parents do not have access to affordable healthcare.

Recent Articles

In depth articles and videos on Tim’s stances and solutions.