Say What We See

As a lifelong Democrat and activist, I believe everyone in this country deserves a shot at the American dream. I believe in and I have fought for our values—fair wages and support for unions; debt-free college; a woman’s right to choose; a single-payer Medicare option for healthcare; protecting the environment; affordable quality daycare and good schools; preserving and strengthening Medicare and Social Security; supporting small businesses; helping veterans; and a fair tax system that does not favor Wall Street over Main Street. We have detailed plans for all of this.

However, as Americans, we need to talk about something else as well.

The House of Representatives is called “The People’s House” because nobody serves there without being elected by the people, to serve the people, we the people of the United States. It is the Legislative Branch of government, designed by our founders to be an independent and co-equal branch of government. It is supposed to do the will of the people and to provide oversight of the Executive Branch. But we have gone off track, and we now have a President who is unchecked.

Washington Republicans, who have the power to do oversight hearings and who control the floor because they hold the majority, are mostly silent. They either fear him or refuse to believe the truth, calling the harm he is doing to our nation fake news.

Babies in jail. People with disabilities mocked by the president and his advisor. People stopped at the airport because they come from Muslim countries. Emboldened neo-Nazis and the KKK praising the President. Rampant corruption and ethics violations. Constant criminal investigations, prosecutions, and lawsuits. Sadly, this is real.

Indeed, as Thomas Paine put it, "These are the times that try men's souls." We see the President attack the free press, and government institutions such as the Department of Justice, undermining people’s faith and confidence. He praises dictators and insults our allies. Friends such as Germany, England, and Canada are angry and confused.

They ask what is happening to America? The shining city on the hill, the beacon of democracy, the land of the free and the home of the brave? Democrats, some Republicans, and other good people know what is happening and they are resisting.

But there is still too much silence on the part of many politicians. They want us to just talk about what we are for, not what we are against.

I disagree. We know what we are for—I've listed it at the top—and we should repeat and stress how we support working men and women; students; children; our military and veterans; seniors; the rest of us!

But we also have a moral obligation to say what we see. As Benjamin Franklin warned after the Constitutional Convention, we did have a republic—if we could keep it. Winston Churchill said, “Courage is rightly esteemed the first of human qualities because it has been said, it is the quality which guarantees all others.”

You have my promise that I will not stay silent. I will not be one of Paine's "sunshine patriots." I will persevere and act with courage. I will stand up against this President's and administration's atrocious, reckless, and shameful behavior and policies, uphold the rule of law, preserve our rights and freedoms, and restore civility and America’s good standing in the world.

I am proud to be a democratic activist, and I will not back down. Winston Churchill also said, “If you’re going through hell, keep going.” And activists are willing to keep going until we pull our great country back on course. Let’s work hard together and never falter until we are moving forward again! With over a decade of working for Congresswoman Shea-Porter, I have the experience to act effectively with no learning curve. I also have the enthusiasm and commitment to do this work, and I have the necessary courage. I’d be honored to be your voice in Congress, and humbly ask for your vote in the New Hampshire Primary on Tuesday, September 11.

Naomi Andrews