Saturday, May 11, 2013

"I Am Compelled to Fight"

“I volunteered to fight in this war.  I have risen through the ranks and now find myself on the front lines with an army of New Media warriors following me into the fray.  It is no longer a choice to fight; I am compelled to fight.”  -Andrew Breitbart

I did volunteer to fight in this war, fifteen years ago when I began my involvement in politics.  It happened this way: there was a meeting at my church talking about how to attend political conventions and learn the political process to promote prolife views.  I definitely wanted in on that.  So I did more than vote in the general election for the first time that year.  I voted in my first Republican primary, and attended my first Republican convention.  And it was like crack.

In the years since, I’ve had opportunities to work on campaigns, attend candidate forums, walk blocks and make phone calls, and meet a ton of dedicated people who love this country and want to see it governed well. 

Then the financial crisis threatened us.  Then the bailouts happened.  Then THIS happened.

So then I had an opportunity to start a tea party, organize protests and rallies, become a media spokesperson, and give speeches and presentations.  Oh, and meet, educate, and train a ton MORE people who love this country and want to see it governed well.

My philosophy has always been, since I started in politics, that I had a responsibility to share my knowledge.  If I knew how to do something, I wanted to teach others how to do it too.  If I learned about an issue on the ballot, I wanted others to have the same information. 
Sometimes that has made me a challenge to people who just don’t eat and breathe and sleep politics.  I get that.  In fact, my own family blocks me on social media because they know what my feed looks like.  But by the same token, I get phone calls asking for information about candidates.  I have people who drive by my house before each election to check the signs in my yard.  Being a political junkie has that upside: the ability to influence others.

People have urged me to run for office for years.  My stock answer: “No.  Never.”  I’ve seen how difficult elections are.  I’ve seen some great people chewed up and spit out by the stress and the strain of running.  Campaigns are often brutal, nasty, frustrating, and draining.  I’ve never felt called to run for any office; I much prefer being in the campaign, working behind the scenes.

Until now.

As a tea party leader, I’ve wanted to be independent of the Republican Party for many reasons.  I wanted to be free to hold Republicans accountable.  I wanted to avoid the charge of being a Republican auxiliary.  I wanted to focus on the core beliefs of tea party: fiscal responsibility, free markets, following the Constitution.  I handed the precinct over to another passionate volunteer so as not to shortchange either the tea party or the Republican Party.  But I’ve stayed involved in Republican politics, even serving on the Rules Committee at the Republican Party of Texas’s State Convention last summer.

But my county is in trouble.  The largest county in the largest Red State has been turning blue before my eyes.  I’ve seen what progressive policies are doing in other states, in other counties in my own state.  I’ve seen what they’re doing to us as a nation.  And I can’t watch from the sidelines anymore. 

I don’t have the confidence required to believe the current leadership in the Harris County Republican Party is able to handle the Battleground Texas assault, the technology gap, the lack of strategic partnerships or the messaging shortcomings we face.  And I refuse to sit through another election cycle wishing I could do more.

It is no longer a choice to fight.  I am compelled to fight.

I’m announcing that I am going to run for Harris CountyRepublican Party Chair in 2014. 
There will be a more formal launch coming soon, but I wanted to let all of you know my intentions and ask for your support with tackling the issues we face.  As I put together the campaign organization, I’ll be asking for your help, whether you live in Harris County or across the country.  This county is rapidly becoming Ground Zero in the political struggle against progressive policies, and it is going to take a massive effort to fight them back. 

It’s going to take an army.