It has been a week since the election. We lost. It wasn’t close. I let you down. I could offer excuses.
I entered the race late because I believed Linda Koop deserved opposition. I had little money and no organization. I knew very few of the local political movers and shakers. My business commitments limited my time to campaign. But none of that matters. The fact is that I did not do the things I need to do to be successful.
Linda Koop had a huge advantage in name recognition and money. According to public records, by March 4th, she had raised over $227,000, and she spent $181,500. We spent less than $16,000 in the same period. When you consider the additional funding she received from special interests and lobbyists, she outspent our campaign by even more.
Despite all that advertising, voter turnout was down about 12% from 2014, the last off year primary. There was no enthusiasm for Linda Koop. With the paltry budgets of Scott Kilgore and myself, we could not generate any awareness.
So, despite Linda’s sizable victory, this election really determined very little.
I want you to know that your investment is me has not been wasted. I will be more involved in local politics. I will continue to oppose cronyism and corruption. One of the things that I have learned is that Linda neglects large segments of the district she represents, and I want to give those folks a voice. Whether or not I ever run for office again, I will work to achieve the goals that we share.
I’ll leave you with one of my favorite quotations from Teddy Roosevelt. I try to live by it, and I invite you to do the same.
“The credit belongs to those who are actually in the arena, who strive valiantly; who know the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spend themselves in a worthy cause; who at best know the triumph of high achievement; and who, at worst, if they fail, fail while daring greatly, so that their place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.”
Let’s all strive valiantly. It has been an honor and a pleasure to get to know each of you. God bless.