Life is about ‘show­ing up’

Rappahannock News - - BIZ BIO • COM­MENT -

Shortly af­ter my cam­paign for Congress con­cluded, I sat down with Ed Gille­spie to talk about his up­com­ing run for gov­er­nor and what he wanted to do for our com­mon­wealth. In that meet­ing, I saw what for­mer Pres­i­dent Bush must have seen when he asked Ed to join his White House staff, a kind, thought­ful, and in­sight­ful man, who un­der­stood first­hand the prob­lems fac­ing av­er­age Vir­gini­ans. Grow­ing up in a solid mid­dle class fam­ily, Ed learned early the value of hard work and per­se­ver­ance. What has fol­lowed has been an all-Amer­i­can story that has seen the grand­son of an im­mi­grant jan­i­tor go on to great suc­cess in busi­ness and gov­ern­ment.

All of that is re­mark­able, but why does it make Ed the right man to be our next gov­er­nor? Well let’s take a look at his pro­pos­als for look­ing af­ter agri­cul­ture, an is­sue near and dear to those of us here in ru­ral Vir­ginia, but also an in­te­gral part of the com­mon­wealth’s econ­omy rep­re­sent­ing nearly 10 per­cent of our gross do­mes­tic prod­uct, $70 bil­lion in eco­nomic im­pact, and over 334,000 jobs. As gov­er­nor, Ed Gille­spie will work mem­bers of the gen­eral as­sem­bly, like Del­e­gate We­bert, to re­duce reg­u­la­tions on farm­ers, push through tax re­lief for small busi­ness own­ers, and ap­point a Joint Deputy Sec­re­tary for Ru­ral Eco­nomic Devel­op­ment, who will work across de­part­ments to en­sure co­or­di­na­tion of eco­nomic devel­op­ment ef­forts across agri­cul­ture, forestry, and aqua­cul­ture in­dus­tries in the com­mon­wealth. In short, he will un­lock the eco­nomic po­ten­tial of our fam­ily farm­ers and en­sure agri­cul­ture con­tin­ues to play the im­por­tant role in Vir­ginia, as it has for over 300 years.

I don’t know Ralph Northam out­side of what I have seen on tele­vi­sion and read on his web­site. While he seems a good and de­cent man, his pol­icy po­si­tions are not rep­re­sen­ta­tive of most Vir­gini­ans, and he does not ap­pear to have the vi­sion or the will to take on the chal­lenges fac­ing the com­mon­wealth. It has been said that 80 per­cent of life is show­ing up. Ed Gille­spie is a man who has shown up for his friends, his neigh­bors, and his coun­try time and again, and so I ask all of you to show up and vote for Ed on Novem­ber 7th. JOE WHITED Wash­ing­ton

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