November 12, 2013
While I will have more to say about the election later, I didn’t want too much time to go by without saying a heartfelt “thank you” to all of you that did so much to help me fight to win this year’s Governor’s race.
I have been actively engaged in helping Republican candidates every year for the past 22 years. For just over half of that time, I have been a candidate myself.
I began as a volunteer in 1991 helping John Marshall run for the House of Delegates and Ron Hager run for Sheriff of Arlington. I can still remember going door to door for the first time, led by Laura Holmes, now Laura Holmes Jost. I can also still picture Ron Hager in his debate with eventual winner, Democrat Tom Faust (it was Arlington after all…). Ron destroyed Faust in that debate and every single thing Ron said about the new jail at the heart of that campaign came true, just as he said it would. I have never seen such a disparity between candidates where the obviously better candidate lost.
It was an eye opener and it was a beginning.
Through all of my 22 years, I am still an idealist. It’s quite a handicap in politics. But it’s not in my nature to give it up.
Perhaps my greatest disappointment in this year’s race is simply that the truth wasn’t enough. I know that sounds simple, and there’s a lot more to campaigns than being substantively better than the other side, but I’ve always trusted that truth counts for something… a lot actually. In fact, I think just a few more days of the truth of ObamaCare raining down on Virginians would have done the trick. But it was not to be, at least not for us, not in 2013.
Whenever I have volunteered to help others run for office, I’ve always been happy to do it. And on some of the races I worked on, I occasionally put in up to 60 hour weeks volunteering. But again, I was glad to do it.
I spent five years as a precinct captain in Western Fairfax. I did recruitment and party building, and again, I was glad to do it.
But let me tell you, it is a very different story when you are a candidate. And this is the crux of what I want to say to you today.
I simply cannot convey how personally moving and humbling it is to me that you would personally campaign for me. I am more grateful than a simple “thank you” can possibly communicate.
Whether it was door knocking, recruiting friends, making phone calls, holding yourself out there as my supporter with signs or bumper stickers, setting up events, opening your home, working gun shows, fairs and the like, praying for us, or working on fundraising, all of it includes certain common elements.
First and foremost, to do any of these things requires you to take a leap of faith in me. It chokes me up just to type that sentence. The English language simply fails me in trying to express my gratitude for this simple truth.
Please understand that your trust is a thought never far from my mind as I go about my public duties. It is part of why I strive so ardently to be consistent in all that I believe, say and do.
Second, doing all of these things also involves you in putting your own credibility on the line for me, and I am very cognizant of not letting you down.
I am not perfect. I have never campaigned as being perfect, and I make mistakes all the time. But as much as I have tried to maintain my own honor and dignity, I am just as concerned with not ever having a supporter think or say, “I’m embarrassed of being a Cuccinelli supporter.”
I respect what each of you has put into this race, and I am grateful for your efforts, your trust, and your endorsement by your actions.
So I want to say “thank you” to each one of you. Thank you for your vote, your trust, your personal endorsement, your work, your donations, and your prayers.
You made this campaign possible, and you helped make it worthwhile and rewarding for me and Teiro. I’m sorry I didn’t pull out the win, but I leave the race behind me still committed to the first principles of this country, and I hope you are too!
Thank you and may God bless and keep each one of you.