Chuck DeVore, the conservative California candidate for U.S. Senate who was unsuccessful in his bid in last week’s primary, sends this note today to his supporters. He is telling California to get behind Carly Fiorina, the nominee, and retire incumbent Senator Barbara Boxer.
Jun 14 2010
By Chuck DeVore
In November 2008, a little more than a week after President Obama’s historic election, we launched our campaign to defeat Barbara Boxer. With neither personal wealth nor celebrity, we knew the odds would be long – but what we lacked in resources, we made up for in principle, energy, and creativity.
We worked hard for 18 months, eventually logging more than 360 events, meeting more than 70,000 people, and driving and flying 100,000 miles with a basic message that there’s nothing wrong with America that adhering to Constitutional principles couldn’t repair. The voters responded with more than 25,000 donations totaling almost $2.8 million – more than the top four Republicans combined raised for the U.S. Senate primary back in 2004.
The effort paid off in two ways: one practical and measurable (name identification); the other philosophical and potentially perishable (issues).
California most accurate poll, the Field Poll, measured our progress in the most basic of campaign metrics: name identification. In October 2009 I had 18% name ID among likely Republican primary voters, with 7% having a positive opinion and 11% having a negative opinion of me. Just days before the election, in a state of 37 million people, I had 49% name ID with 41% expressing a positive opinion and only 8% negative. This is a remarkable achievement and it is largely due to the hard work and dedication of our many thousands of volunteers.
Most significantly, our campaign drove the issues in the 2010 Republican primary. We tapped the principles, energy, and enthusiasm of the still-growing Tea Party movement and moved the debate to conservative issues such as limited government, out of control spending, illegal immigration and Second Amendment rights.
Make no mistake: to her credit, Carly Fiorina won the primary by effectively co-opting our issues. In this, you should all be proud. What it means is this: far from conservative ideals losing the Republican primary, they resoundingly won, with 75.8% of Republican primary voters voting for declared conservatives.
And, if early indications are correct, again, to her credit, Carly Fiorina shows no sign of “running to the middle” for the general election. Instead, while on Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace, Fiorina held to conservative principles regarding the right to life, the Second Amendment, and limited government, citing California’s 12.6% unemployment rate while, “the federal government is growing its employees at 14.5% a year.”
This is where you can help. We need to beat Boxer and we need to do it with conservative issues. In that regard, the more of you who help my former opponent, the more likely it is that her team will see the vigor and numbers among conservatives that they need to win in November.