Thursday, November 06, 2008
A message from Walt
I left the Election Night party just after midnight, unsure of whether I was going to win or lose. After a fitful night of sleep I awoke early on Wednesday to a slim lead and a handful of precincts left to count. By the time I got ready and drove back to the Boise hotel where my bleary-eyed staff had been up all night, the results were clear: We had done it.
I need to thank so many people but I want to start by thanking all of you, my friends, supporters and volunteers. You won this election. You were the reason we pulled it out and were able to claim a victory already being called “historic” by pundits and press alike.
However, as satisfying as this win was and is, the real work is about to begin. There is still a recession. People are still worried about their jobs. They are still worried about their homes. They are still worried about how they can afford college for their children.
These are still tough times.
That is why I am committed to the same approach I promised throughout the campaign. As your Congressman, I will reach across the aisle, find partners and collaborators, work as hard as I can to change Washington, D.C., and help move this country forward.
The last year has been amazing for A.K. and I, as well as for our family. We traveled a District that spreads from Nevada to Canada. We met thousands of proud Idahoans. We heard uplifting stories of all that’s great about our state, and tragic tales of the hardship so many people face today.
One story stands out. On a hot summer day I was walking back down Main Street in Emmett after spending the afternoon walking in the annual parade. I saw a woman sitting on the front porch of a run-down home. She said hello and I stopped to talk. She told me she was scared.
This woman was working two full-time jobs just to make ends meet, which was hard because neither job paid more than minimum wage. Gas was more expensive, food was more expensive and her employers were struggling, and she was having trouble making ends meet. Things were so bad that was worried she would be evicted from the home she had rented for more than 30 years.
That was a sobering day for me, and I will never forget it. That’s why I am humbled by the responsibility we now have to make this a better Idaho for her, for all of us. It is a responsibility I will honor by always working hard, by listening to every voice and by doing what’s right for Idaho.
We did an amazing thing.
Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart.