We have created the largest, widest grassroots support of any of the current candidates. I will never forget those who have been a part of that effort. Nevertheless, I have realized that the funding necessary to remain competitive through August and then November is beyond our reach. Therefore, I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that now is not the time for this candidacy.
This campaign has always been about a hopeful, optimistic future for Kansas. The roundtable discussions, town-hall meetings and numerous meet and greets were informative and inspiring. Our listening tour made listening cool, and now other candidates are talking about how they will listen. The “Ed Talk” created buzz, shared a powerful message and captured attention. Our launch week was energizing, hopeful and uplifting. We brought so many new people into the political fold.
Kansans made it clear we need elected officials with the wisdom and skill to bring people together, the willingness to truly listen to differing perspectives, and the courage to chart new ways forward.
I am thankful for so many supporters giving so much to this journey. Their commitment to our state didn’t begin or end with this campaign. We will find ways to continue to work together to create a better Kansas.
I am grateful to my Kansas Leadership Center colleagues who guided the organization so well while I’ve been on an unpaid leave of absence. Learning you are not indispensable is a sobering reality, but it confirms our message—there is leadership in every Kansan waiting for its chance.
And as you can imagine, I’m grateful for my family. This past year has been hectic, to say the least. I am so thankful to Joanna and our children Kate, Jack and Lizzie for their never-ending support for this effort.
Neither political party knows exactly how to solve our toughest problems. That’s why we need elected officials with the wisdom and skill to bring people together, the willingness to truly listen to differing perspectives, and the courage to chart new ways forward. I may be leaving the campaign but I will never stop caring about solving those problems. I plan to help wherever I can!
I know many supporters will be disappointed. I am, too. I cannot help but feel as if I have let so many people down. Yet, the flip side of our shared optimism for the future of Kansas has to be brutal realism about what it will take to get there.
It was an honor to run this campaign. I pledge to continue working for the greater good of all Kansans.
Onward for Kansas!