Tom Campbell — From GOP Governor’s Race to U.S. Senate
I write today first with a sincere word of thanks. Your encouragement for my candidacy for Governor in California has been personally, deeply rewarding.
I initially made the decision to run for Governor because I believe that my level of record of public service (especially on the state budget), and my willingness to present specific, pragmatic solutions to our most pressing problems would enable me to help chart a better course for our state.
Like you, I am motivated by a desire to serve our state and country. I’ve devoted my entire career to public service and to teaching, which I consider yet another form of public service.
Today, I remain firmly committed on that path with an announcement that I’ll be running for the U.S. Senate instead.
We face a fiscal crisis of epic proportions at the national as well as the state level.
Every day brings more evidence of the need for fiscal restraint in Washington, and the huge danger to our country from printing money. Truly, in my lifetime, I have never seen the growth of federal government spending more out of control. The consequences will be both inflation in the very near future, affecting us all, but retirees especially, and a tremendous burden on the next generation that will have to pay back what has been borrowed. The federal deficit has more than tripled in a single year. That’s suicidal for our country.
When I was in Congress, I was twice rated by the National Taxpayers’ Union Foundation as the SINGLE MOST FRUGAL Member of Congress, based on the bills I had introduced and co-sponsored to control spending. I have a Ph.D. in economics; Milton Friedman was my faculty advisor; I was the last budget director of California to serve while the budget balanced; my whole background, training, and career has pointed to the primacy of fiscal responsibility.
Many of you helped me in 1992, when I almost won the Republican primary for U.S. Senate. I narrowly lost, and the Republican who won, went on to lose to now-Senator Barbara Boxer. She has been in the Senate for 18 years, after a race which many analysts say I would have won had I been her opponent. The economic times are now even more critical than then; and it is, thus, even more important now than it was then that Californians have a fiscally sound representative in the U.S. Senate.
Another consideration in my decision was that the dynamics of the race for Governor are such that I would have faced two billionaires. The path of public service and teaching is rewarding, but it does not afford one the ability to invest millions of dollars in a campaign for office.
Nonetheless, I am mindful of the help of so many friends for my campaign for Governor; deepest thanks for your own generosity. Contributions to my Governor’s campaign allowed me to create and maintain the most substantive, best reviewed political website in our state’s history and communicate with well over a million Californians directly. The experience gained in that effort is not lost.
In 1982, Pete Wilson was running for Governor. He switched to run for the US Senate instead, won that race (against Jerry Brown), was a superb US Senator, then, 8 years later, was elected our Governor. There is, indeed, precedent for being pragmatic in seeking public service. But the overwhelming factor should be one’s love of country and state, and deep commitment to making each better. Our country is at a very perilous point in economic terms, and in terms of the size and intrusiveness of government. I believe I can help to restore our nation’s economic health, and spirit of independence.
I wanted you – one of my earliest supporters — to know why I’ve chosen a different direction to do so.
I ask for your help in this new endeavor. With warmest thanks for all your help,
P.S. Tonight, I will host a telephone townhall meeting with supporters and voters to discuss the uncontrolled spending in Washington. Please join this meeting by registering here. I would love to speak with you and kick-off my campaign for Senate on the right foot.
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