We are privileged to live in a nation where each vote is counted and every voice is heard, where democracy is the law of the land.
It’s been a few days since the election and the dust is beginning to settle. In each race, many voted for the person who won. Many did not. Those of us on the losing side of this election reflect on what went wrong, what could have been different. We are grappling with some very hard truths. Some of us are most concerned with what went wrong in the Presidential race. I am not going to be the pundit who tackles that question. It is my responsibility to assess what happened in my own race. In some ways it would be easiest if I just accepted that whatever went wrong in the Presidential race had the same impact on our race in MN CD 3. Yet I hold myself to a higher standard. I must own and take responsibility for not connecting with voters in a way that earned a majority of their votes. First of all, I acknowledge Erik Paulsen. He has earned the respect and the trust of the majority of voters in CD 3. I thank him for his years of service and acknowledge the goodwill he has garnered.
I believe we vote for leaders who share our vision. In light of the election outcome, I will restate my strong vision for an America that I hold dear. I do this not in hopes of earning a future vote, but in hopes of restoring your sense of who I am beyond the negative arc of this divisive campaign.
In our America:
No community or demographic is discriminated against for who they love or how they live.
Every person and family has access to high quality affordable healthcare that does not define or limit employment opportunities.
We harness the power of innovation and the entrepreneurial spirit to strengthen our place in the global economy.
We foster a job and business climate that affords each and every person the opportunity to work to his or her potential.
We address climate change with urgency.
We no longer sit idly by and let our communities continue to be ravaged by gun violence.
The key to future success is through our focus on the next generation.
We are bold and transformational.
Here in CD3, our contest was not about Terri Bonoff vs. Erik Paulsen. It was about all of us, a vision for our great State and our blessed Nation. It was about standing for the issues we all care about and putting people before politics. I pledge to you that I will continue to put forward our vision for America as I go forward.
I reject the divisive rhetoric of our political discourse; We must restore integrity and honesty to our political campaigns and create a level playing field that is not dominated by special interest money. I reject the notion that I have been defined by millions of dollars of distorted mudslinging. I will continue to define myself as I define all of us. We embody the spirit of potential greatness. It is a choice. We must consciously choose light and hope at every turn and ask for guidance when our path is unclear.
This election may be over, but our work continues. We now have a responsibility to come together. My decade long campaign theme, “Uniting the Middle”, is more important than ever before. We cannot give up. The key to healing our nation’s deep and dark divide is to offer fellowship, respect and understanding. I pledge to bring an open heart and an honest ear to all I meet in the coming days and weeks ahead.
We must not rest until there is truly peace all over this land, each person and their promise is honored, and our world’s health is on a path of restoration.
Thank you, my friends from far and wide, my family, my Team Bonoff, for the incredible support you have provided over the past several months. I am a bigger and better person for having been touched by you.
May G-d bless this great Nation.