Dear 8th District Volunteers and Activists,
I have had the privilege of serving as the 8th district chairman since May 2008, and I must admit that Wednesday may have been the toughest day I’ve experienced in this position. I know that many of us felt that the energy and enthusiasm was on our side in the 2012 election. Despite that energy, enthusiasm, and excitement, we know that in the end the election did not go as any of us had hoped.
I want to first thank each and every one of you for all that you did for our candidates. The Victory Offices in the 8th District were constant beehives of activity, of phone banking, door knocking, and voter outreach. In the weeks leading up to the election, so many volunteers, both new volunteers and veterans of past campaigns, came to our offices willing to do anything to help — walk neighborhoods, distribute sample ballots at polling places, or give last-minute rides to the polls to voters. We set records for the numbers of calls made and doors knocked, and brought a whole new group of volunteers and activists into the party. Thank you also to the many Operation Potomac Crossing volunteers who came across the Potomac from DC and Maryland to help us in Virginia.
In the days ahead, we will surely be treated to a variety of analyses of why we lost the presidential election, why we were unable to win Virginia, and what this means for the Republican Party. These analyses, to a point, are healthy; there are undoubtedly lessons to be learned from what we did, what we didn’t do, and what we might have done better. Absorbing these lessons will allow us to be better prepared for the next election and to make the necessary corrections to achieve victory.
That said, now more than ever we need to remain unified as a party and as a conservative movement. Although I believe there are lessons to be learned from the campaigns, I also believe Mitt Romney, George Allen, and Patrick Murray ran honorable, decent, substantive campaigns based on proposing real solutions to the grave problems facing our country, including the national debt, chronic unemployment, the sequestration threat, and foreign policy crises in the Middle East.
I can say without question that I am proud to have supported Mitt Romney, George Allen, and Patrick Murray. They did our party proud. Thank you to each of them and to their campaigns.
By contrast, I also know that our opponent ran television advertisements saying that Mitt Romney was “not one of us.” I know that our opponent accused Mitt Romney of having caused a woman’s cancer death. I know that the opposition party accused Mitt Romney of felonies and tax evasion without the slightest shred of proof. And I know the opposition claimed that Mitt Romney “sullied” the Mormon faith. I will not forget these scurrilous, mendacious, reprehensible attacks. They will motivate me to work harder.
I am proud to be a Virginia Republican. I am proud to be a conservative. I firmly believe that the limited government, free market principles we espouse are the best way to provide the most opportunities for the most people. Nothing that happened yesterday will change that.
I would be lying if I said I wasn’t worried about the next several years and the urgent problems of debt, unemployment, attacks on religious liberty, and spiraling health care costs that threaten our country. But it may be that, as Steve Miller sang, “you got to go through hell before you get to heaven.” I believe in America and the strength of our conservative ideals, and that at some point, however belatedly, our ideals will prevail.
Thank you again for everything you have done for the GOP in 2012. We’ll regroup, dust ourselves off, and come back stronger than ever in 2013. Of that, I am certain.
8th District Republican Committee Chairman