Two years ago, I decided to run for Congress to fight against the excessive partisanship which has done so much damage to our nation by grid locking progress. I also wanted to 1) set an example as an Independent (No Party Preference) candidate, thus encouraging other Independents in California to take advantage of our open primary system, and 2) to focus the country’s attention on California’s non-partisan redistricting reform, which allowed voters to participate in a contested election in our district for the first time in 40 years.
I’m grateful that with support from so many Independents, Democrats and Republicans we gave Congressman Waxman the toughest and most competitive race ever and captured 46% of the vote. We also showed that an independent can make it past a major party candidate into the top two run-off. We showed the country that open primaries and redistricting reform are one of the solutions to the excessive partisanship that is gripping our country.
Since the Congressman’s announcement, I have been overwhelmed with the outpouring of support and encouragement from so many of you who reached out to me and asked me to run for Congress again. I’m humbled to know that you believe in our message and are willing to support it with your time and resources.
As my wife, Susan, and I reflected on this decision it came down to one powerful question: Where and how can we make the biggest impact on the issues we care most about?
My objective two years ago was never the title of “Congressman.” It has always been to help solve some of the crucial problems that are hampering our nation and our state. Whether it be fixing Congress…or pushing for fair redistricting…or working behind the scenes to support the Foundation for Defense of Democracies because of my concern about the security of the United States and Israel…or eliminating the undue influence of special interest money in politics…or ensuring a quality education for all children, regardless of their zip code. My goal was and still is to make a positive difference on the problems faced by our country and state.
That is why we have concluded that running for the 33rd Congressional seat at this time would not be the best use of our time and resources to truly drive meaningful change on critical issues, particularly our passion for public education.
You have our commitment that Susan and I will continue to speak out and work hard to make a difference. We will continually reassess and look for those opportunities to make the biggest impact on important issues.
Thank you for your support.