A few days after the primary, a lot of us are still licking our wounds in defeat, even as we move to support another candidate or focus on other races. It can be devastating to lose a campaign and make one very pessimistic when they commit themselves to a candidate, fully believing that they will win, and finding that the voters didn't make the same choice.
I wanted to write this diary to ask that we try to hold on to our optimism and to give a special thank you to those of you who worked to elect candidates because you truly believe in a better future. I was most inspired to write this thank you note by my experiences with the staff of Ed Fallon's primary campaign.
Over the past few weeks, I got to know a few of Ed's staffers pretty well. Working in politics for a little while, I've met some very cynical people who believe that winning is everything, that major sacrifices to one's integrity must be made, that the money is what truly counts, and that the election is more important than the candidate, the voters, or the movement. I discovered quickly that the folks I met on Ed Fallon's campaign didn't fit that profile at all. They possessed a set of values that is sadly rare these days.
You folks are good people who believe in a truly progressive future where we don't elect candidates just because they have a D by their name, but because they share our values. As long as you're around, despite all the cynics, I can still feel comfortable about calling myself a Democrat.
Even sadder for me than the fact that my chosen candidate lost in my primary was the fact that, soon, many of the staff of Fallon's campaign and other campaigns would be leaving our great state. I'd no longer be able to look forward to spending weekend nights discussing politics over the summer and laughing about completely inane subjects with them.
I knew that it was pretty unlikely that I'd find many other political activists with whom I could climb a tree in front of a busy bar in downtown Des Moines, or discuss plans to start a 527 to attack eaters of Chili Dogs. It's an amazing thing to find a group of people who are fully committed to change and are completely serious about making it happen, but also know how to have fun and not take themselves too seriously. I'm going to miss you guys a lot.
Don't get me wrong and assume that I don't believe any similar people worked for and voted for Boswell, or any other candidate, for the same reasons. I know that people make their choices for a variety of reasons and I don't mean to say that none of them are as fun or as committed to change for the right reasons. However, it was my experience with the Fallon staff did a great deal to renew my faith in the Democratic Party in a way that few campaigns have ever done.
So, to all of you who have been working for a candidate that lost this past Tuesday, especially those who uprooted their lives and came from out of state, thank you.
And a special thank you to Ed Fallon and his staff, including Ali, Avery and Justin, the three whom I got to know the best. Try not to be discouraged and I look forward to fighting for justice on the same team once again some day.
To all of you that will now be leaving our state, Iowa will be happy to welcome you back whenever you're ready.