Hello Kossacks! And thanks so much for your unbelievably generous support of my campaign: together we've raised over $1 million in small contributions--in less than 48 hours. I honestly cannot believe what YOU have done, and I can’t possibly let you know how grateful I am.
When I first ran against Joe Wilson in 2008, I did it knowing that, like a lot of Americans, I would be fighting an uphill battle. Wilson—as his childish display the other night made clear—does not represent the people of my district, but the insurance industry that fattens his campaign wallet.
And if that tantrum were all he was guilty of, it would be bad enough. But he has hurt the people of South Carolina not merely with his words, but his actions. Because of the kind of "representation" we’ve gotten from Mr. Wilson, parts of my district have seen so many jobs sent overseas that almost one-quarter of the residents are unemployed. These corporate giveaways may be great for Mr. Wilson’s campaign account, and for Big Finance, but not for Allendale, South Carolina. I know this not only as a South Carolinian, but a husband, father, and owner of a small business.
I served our country in Iraq—twice—because I believe that when your country comes knocking, there is no higher calling than service. It is the same reason I ran in 2008, when nobody gave me a chance, and I managed to get over 46% of the vote against an entrenched incumbent (while being outspent by more than 4:1). That was a higher % than our President got in my district.
So here I am running again in 2010. Just as determined to bring real representation—let’s call it adult representation—to the people of my district, many of whom lack jobs, healthcare, and sadly, hope. Working together, we can change that.
Running for office isn't about me and you reminded me of that with your enormous generosity, which has seen my campaign raise $1 million from the very people that I will be fighting for in Congress. That means that because of YOU, I will not be outspent 4:1 in the general election this time. Negative attack ads will not be able to drown out honest solutions to what ails our great nation. And for that, I am eternally thankful.
In closing, we must all stop and reflect for a moment about what this great nation means to us, and how we can continue to help it fulfill it’s promise. I’d like to thank all of you for giving me the opportunity to do just that.