With the permission of my friend Clint Nye, I am posting his letter. Clint writes a great letter about the importance of getting involved in the political process. Many times I've told my friends politics can be ugly and it surely isn't Sunday school, but it is just important because those politicians have the ability to impact our lives with the decisions they make. That is the main reason that I am politically active; to be a voice in the decisions that affect me and my family. Thanks again Clint for taking the time to express your thoughts so clearly and passionately, we can all learn from your words. -- Phill
How do you write a political letter to family and friends? Especially considering I truly do not like politics at any level. But what I don't like even more is having people I don't know make choices that directly effect me and my family. Too long I have been one to sit back and accept the choices made in my behalf whether they were right or wrong. Like many I figured, 'This is Utah. What does it matter whether I get involved or not? I'll let others do that for me. After all, I'm sure their views are identical to mine. I'm sure they're Mormon.'
In 2010 I decided to try and do something, but I really had no idea where to even begin. I decided to attend the caucus meetings. I am embarrassed to admit that I had no clue what they were even about. I recall every time law and government was taught in any classes I ever took, I became completely disinterested. I've never cared much for it let alone felt like I have the mental capacity to follow it all.
At the caucus meeting, and to my surprise, I was nominated as both a county delegate and precinct chair. My neighbor was elected precinct chair, fortunately, but I was elected to be a county delegate. Looking back, perhaps I should have declined that nomination. I really had no clue how political parties even worked, let alone what my new responsibilities entailed. On the flip side, this experience has taught me more than I ever new about the Republican Party and the process of elections.
I have spoken with dozens of county and state delegates over the past two years and have learned that most feel the way I feel, but many do not. I've sat in campaign meetings where candidates meet with these delegates and answer questions and speak there positions. It's hard for me to really engage in many of these conversations because there are some incredibly educated people there. I often feel out of my element. At first I tried to pretend I was on top of things and knew and comprehended everything that was being discussed. This last year it hit me, however, that I am the majority. There are literally hundreds of thousands of people just like me that aren't necessarily being represented. I am convinced that most do not care to get involved in politics, and are content having those that want that role, making all the decisions. Not just in Utah, but across the entire country, it is this attitude that has gotten us where we are today.
In my precinct there were three county delegates elected. One of them, no one really knew. I was shocked that he was elected. He actually nominated himself and made it clear that the reason he did so was to help a particular candidate get elected into the then state legislature race. After that election was over, and his choice lost, he kind of disappeared and he had to be replaced by the alternate delegate. This type of thing has me very concerned. Why was he even elected, first of all? I believe this happens in every precinct. People seeking political position of one kind or another call on those they know to run as delegates. This greatly increases their chances for being elected. More than once as a delegate, those I've voted for were not elected. Though the candidates that were elected are still good, I don't feel they were the best and neither do my closest confidants that are also delegates.
It is for this reason that I am emailing you. The next Republican Caucus is March 15th. I strongly encourage you all to attend. You don't need to be elected anything to get involved. I am amazed at how little I've known candidates I've voted for in the past. How many like me have unknowingly elected the very people, in part, responsible for the very things we all feel need to be changed today? Please attend and play your part. It doesn't have to be big. Even if you don't attend the caucuses, please at least take the time to get to know the candidates you'll be voting for this November. This country and this state need us.
I have never once publicly announced my support for any candidate. Even when my mind is made up I don't want signs in my yard. On election night I don't even like wearing stickers announcing who is getting my vote. Somehow that changed last night. I met Dan Liljenquist and heard him speak and shook his hand. He has been a state senator for district 23 for the last three years. I have never felt more strongly impressed to support any candidate in any race as I do for him. His humble yet determined resolve to better this country is powerful. In great contrast, Orin Hatch has an arrogant and entitled attitude. I have met him, shaken his hand and heard him speak. He is a seasoned politician. 36 years is far too long for one man to be in any political role. I am so inspired when I think of George Washington humbly stepping down after two terms as President. By far most of the populous wanted him to stay on a third term. Many wanted him to be made king. He knew he was not bigger than the position and stepped down to let others step up and lead. I so desperately wish we had more of that today. Term limits in other positions have been made for a reason. Men are easily corrupted. It is time for Orin Hatch to step down. It's too bad he won't do this on his own. Please help me make this happen this year by voting Dan Liljenquist for US Senate.
Please don't hesitate to talk with me anytime about these things. I need to learn all I can to be a stronger advocate for that which is right. Learn about Dan at www.danforutah.com. Thank you so much for tolerating this email. I wish you the very best.