Over the course of the last week, I have been repeatedly asked, “why are you doing this?” “What made you decide to do this?” And, “How long have you been thinking about doing this?” In my mind, the answer to this is really an easy one. I can’t watch local or national news, read a paper, read an online article or editorial, talk to friends and family, or even read a proposed bill or the roll call to a bill without getting the urge to want to do something about the event that’s unfolding. The specific, individual reasons are really too numerous to list, but I have three reasons right off the top of my head that give this campaign its purpose:
1) It goes without saying that I live within the district I want to represent. I’ve spent more than enough time following my opponent’s voting record, press releases, and social media posts to know that there’s a better way of doing things, and a better person for the job. He represents me, and he represents you, and he’s doing an inadequate job at it.
2) Politics has always been an interest of mine. In middle school I was constantly reading books about Nixon and Kennedy. By high school I was flooding my schedule with history, government, and civics classes (in-between vocational classes, of course), while every other class played second fiddle (and my grades reflected that). Spending the summers with my grandparents played no small part in my influence, either.
In college, I’ve spent every semester seeking out economics, philosophy, and political science courses, and spend the majority of my “free time” using Audible or my Kindle to burn through book after book on economics, modern military history, politics, homeschooling, and philosophy. I’m sure that sounds boring to many, but I equate this to reading, eating, sleeping, and breathing a topic such as hunting; eventually, you’re going to put the book down and go hunting.
3) My experience in the military is without a doubt a major contributing factor towards my decision to serve you. I spent the better part of the previous decade getting a firsthand look at not only the atrocity that is our foreign policy by frequenting nearly 40 countries, meeting with dignitaries, military personnel, and average citizens around the world, and serving multiple tours in Afghanistan and Iraq, but also dealing with the inefficient, wasteful, bureaucratic mess that is our Defense Department. It’s irritating to listen to both sides of the aisle pretend to debate foreign policy and defense spending, to say the least.
All of these factors and more have made a tremendous impact on my choice to serve you. I can’t sit here and point fingers or pitch a fit about the ruckus that is our federal government, and never do a thing about it. Yes, I’ve voted, but when your “choices” are regularly limited to a couple of candidates that, fundamentally, aren’t all that different, what impact was it that I was having? One day, I’d like to be able to look my kids in the eyes and tell them that I did all I could do to help them. One day, I hope they look back at this and consider it an example for them to follow. And one day, I hope they are not burdened with the same false choices every election cycle that we are encumbered with.
-Chris Mayo (L), candidate for U.S. House of Representatives (IN-7)