Remarks were delivered on June 11th to over 200 supporters in Annapolis, Maryland.
Ronald Reagan wisely observed that, “ Freedom is a fragile thing, and it’s never more than one generation away from extinction. It’s not ours by way of inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, because it comes only once to a people. And those who have known freedom and lost it have never known freedom again.”
Freedom. I believe that’s why you’re here. I know it’s why I am. I didn’t expect to be; I retired from public service in 2018. I had served as a Navy pilot for over 20 years, as a city councilman, as President of the Maryland Taxpayers Association, and as a three term state delegate. I was ready to relax, and enjoy more time with family and friends. I was ready to enjoy my freedom.
But the world of 2021 is far different than the world of 2018. Our freedom is in jeopardy; and the same sense of duty that called me to the Naval Academy as a midshipman now calls me back to serve as your County Executive. Let me give you three key reasons why I’m running for County Executive. All of them are pillars of the freedom we cherish, and all of them are worthy of our concern in their own right. I’m running for County Executive because it’s your money; because it’s your party and because it’s your government.
First, because it’s your money. Some might suggest our county is simply another victim of Covid-19. But our county’s fiscal and economic decline cannot be blamed on a disease; because while the disease was bad, the so called economic “cures” our County Executive has prescribed for economic recovery are worse. Pittman promised to govern within the tax cap; he broke that promise his first year. Pittman’s taken more money out of every family’s paycheck, with higher property, income, rain taxes, and fees, during a time when they needed it most. Now, like a dog chasing its tail, He’s calling for “progressively higher” income taxes, and higher taxes on property sales, as part of his “economic recovery program”. He doesn’t seem to understand that you can’t spend your way out of debt, or tax yourself into prosperity. It’s time for government to live within it’s means, just like we do; and it’s time for you to put more of your paycheck in your pocket, not Steuart Pittman’s.
Second, because it’s your party. The Republican Party exists to support candidates elected by our primary voters, not to support machine or swamp candidates. It’s your party, not theirs. Why do I bring this up? Because the Chairman of the Maryland Republican Party is unethically using Republican state party funds and resources to pay for polls and mail flyers in support of his wife’s primary campaign for county executive, and is using our state and county organizations as part of her primary campaign. Instead of using our funds to combat liberal candidates and bad Democratic policies, Jessica Haire and her husband are using Party resources for their own personal political agenda. This is wrong, and on this issue, you can’t split Haire’s. They’re both in it together.
Ronald Reagan said, “When you’re up to your armpits in alligators, it’s hard to drain the swamp.” Many have forgotten Reagan was an outsider who challenged a Republican party establishment that accepted the swamp as long as they controlled it. Like Reagan, we will challenge the swamp establishment, and put you back in control; and before anyone accuses us of violating Reagan’s 11th commandment for pointing this out, let me remind them that Jessica Haire voted to censure a Republican president, and bar him from ever holding office again.
Third, because it’s your government. Under Steuart Pittman, government has not been the solution to the problem; government has been the problem. Public education is a core government function. Despite meeting CDC and state reopening criteria, the Pittman administration pushed to keep public school classrooms empty, and 80,000 public school students missed a year of school. Meanwhile, 16,200 religious and private school students, without vaccinations, went back to class last September. A minimal number tested positive, and none were hospitalized or died. Private and religious schools followed the science, and were part of the solution. They safely delivered in-classroom education to their students. Our county government followed the political science of the teacher’s union. They were the problem. That’s what happens when government is run to benefit special interests, not you. That will end on my watch.
Pittman’s executive order to lockdown restaurants, which Judge Bill Mulford designated, “arbitrary and capricious,” would’ve cost 65,000 jobs. Mulford pointed out that it was based on , “completely flawed data that didn’t play out in reality.” It’s yet another example of Pittman bungling a bad situation and making it worse- this time simply to maintain solidarity with his fellow Democratic County Executives.
As your County Executive, I will never forget that it’s your county government, and it exists to serve you, not special interests or partisan ones. Your county government will stand by your side, not ride on your backs; encourage opportunity, not smother it; and foster productivity, not choke it. (1)
Because it’s your money. Because it’s your party. Because it’s your government. But ultimately, we are here because it’s your Freedom. Your money, your party, and your government are the pillars that support it.
We must never forget that we are engaged in a political battle at every level of government-national, state, county, and city- for freedom, against a socialist agenda that would strangle it. We cannot afford to place the outcome of this battle for freedom in the hands of inexperienced machine politicians. The stakes are too high. I have the experience, values, and leadership Republicans need to win; together, with your support, we will go forward to victory.
It’s our generation’s turn to defend freedom. And like generations of Americans before us, we will not waver; we will not tire; we will not falter; and we will not fail. Freedom will prevail. (2) Thank you for joining our campaign. God bless you, and God bless the United States of America.
1 Ronald Reagan Inaugural address
2 George Bush