Well the race is officially over and I did not win, nor did my fellow running mates Celeste Fernandez and Barbara Butterhoff-Rheault. The good news is that amazing women across this nation won and that is a win for all of us. Sadly the blue (women’s ) wave did not reach Atlantic County.
I have many many women to thank for helping me in this race – actually too many to mention here. I have thanked them all personally and I know I could not have done it without them.
But I don’t want to talk about the past, I want to talk about the future. The women I met along the way are strong incredible women who all have a message. For far too long women have taken a back seat in this county and it’s time to move to the driver’s seat. We can and we must control the future. Women won nationally because they were themselves – warts and all. That is the race I ran – I put myself out there on good days and bad. I know that was against “conventional” norms but I didn’t care. I am a passionate fighter whether my nails are polished or not! I did not always look the part but never once did I sway from my beliefs. And I still believe this is the way to win.
Women will take this county back if we come together and show our strength. That is where all of you come in.
After the election I had a very long and inspiring conversation with Cassandra Shober who runs the South Jersey Democratic Women’s Forum. We have a plan and we need all of your participation. Please join us tomorrow (Monday nov 19) at Josie Kelly’s Pub in Somers Point at 6:00 pm to begin to build the most powerful women’s coalition New Jersey has ever seen!
I started my Sunday by attending Katherine Friedman’s (running for Linwood City Council) coffee and conversation event where I met new voters and we had some great discussions. Then it was off to Somers Point to canvass and talk to voters. Next a reconnaissance mission putting my signs up in Linwood Northfield Atlantic City and Ventnor. Now I’m home and preparing for my debate on Wednesday night. I’m so tired; my ankle is bleeding from cutting on a rock while putting up signs and I really really miss my grandchildren. So why am I doing it you might ask? I’m doing it for all the people I’ve met on the campaign trail worried about their taxes; worried about their houses flooding; worried whether their children’s schools are getting the proper funding. THIS is why!! We need people on the Freeholder board who care about our citizens and are always willing to stand up, speak up and do the right thing! I will sleep after the election; my ankle will heal; and I will make up Grammy time on November 7th. But until then, there’s no rest for the weary.
I am entering the long home stretch of this campaign and it is still an uphill battle. I’m out there talking to constituents, listening to their concerns, and now more than ever it is so important that we win this seat on the Freeholder Board.
I’ve been running a very lean campaign (as many of you may have seen through my Facebook posts and videos) but that is the way I will also run the county. I do not have the war chests that my Republic opponent has – I do not pay canvassers or phone bankers and have not hosted and paid a venue for any kind of fundraisers. All the money I raised for my campaign has been truly grass roots with the help of supporters willing to host fundraisers. While I’ve been pinching every penny, the final sprint will cost money – money for advertising; money for mailers; and money to get to the finish line.
ANYTHING you can contribute I can assure you will be put to good use – now and when I’m elected. I would love nothing better than to prove to my Republican opponent that sincerity, passion and determination will win this election NOT who has the most money.
This has been a very hard, very sad day. I cried, I yelled, I vented to my daughter and my friends. Now what I asked them and no one had an answer. We are numb; we are disheartened; we are shocked. But most of all we are angry! I personally am enraged. How can it be that we represent 51% of the population but still have no voice? How is it that women are turning on each other and playing right into their hands? Let’s face it. The Republican senators did believe Dr. Ford but they don’t care! Let that sink in. THEY DON’T CARE.
We are at a crossroad and we can’t and we won’t go back. This is not the country I want for my granddaughters. I’ve been fighting this fight throughout my life – years of male bosses coming too close for comfort; years of being told I wasn’t as smart as the men in the room; years of taking this treatment and I am so done.
So what do we do now? We turn years of anger and frustration into action! THIS IS THE TIME. We’ve lost many battles but we can win the war.
First we vote and we volunteer for female candidates and if possible we donate to candidates that share our values.
Then we research. What companies promote women? That’s where we shop.
And we won’t forget. Every day take just five minutes to contact a senator that voted yes. Let them know we are watching, we are here and we will win the war!
I was canvassing last night in Linwood and I met a man who was listed as “unaffiliated”. So I introduced myself as the Democratic Freeholder candidate for the 2nd district. His response was, “I don’t vote for Democrats. All they do is tax and spend.” He then complained about his property taxes and I asked him if he realized both the county and his town are run by Republicans and have been for some time. He then complained about the gas tax. I informed him this was enacted during the Christie administration. Then I asked him if he was benefitting from the president’s tax cuts and he said no, not yet. And I told him he would be hurt even more because of the caps on property taxes when he filed his tax returns. He really didn’t have an answer for that. i asked if he knew who is current freeholder was and he did not. I told him if he voted for me I guarantee he will know who I am because I’m running for the people of this district. I do not know whether I changed his mind but I sure hope I opened his eyes to reality. I truly cannot understand people who are voting directly against their own self-interest. All I ask is for people to be open minded. If you are unhappy with the way things are then use your vote to change them regardless of party!