Dear Faithful Friends,
Last night was a tough one for all of us. While Janet and I stood on the stage, we felt as if we were surrounded by a much larger family than our immediate family. We have been surrounded throughout the process by a large and growing family of faithful friends whose efforts in the campaign have humbled and amazed us day after day. I regularly wept or choked back tears just reading comments on the blog when I realized the sacrifices that so many have made for the campaign.
We had held out hope that we would win enough delegates to keep the contest going, but had vowed that if Senator McCain actually got the 1191 delegates, we would accept the will of the voters. In the end, the relentless hammering of the media that we "couldn't win" influenced enough voters and while we campaigned long and hard in the final states, it simply wasn't enough. I congratulate Senator McCain and will do what I can to assist him and influence him to take strong stands for issues that we conservatives cherish.
I don't see the long journey having reached its destination, but merely taking a detour. As my Marine friend Clebe McLary says, "I didn't lose--it's just that the game ended before I got finished playing."
In the immediate days ahead, we will be transitioning from campaign mode. For 14 months, there have been a lot of things put on hold in our lives. We have to join the many incredible people on our staff to figure out "what's next?" But this much I can tell you---we want to stay in touch and start now building a platform to continue addressing issues that brought us together in the first place.
Throughout my life, I've found that there are sometimes three possible answers to our prayers--"Yes," "No," or "Not Now." I would like to think our prayers were answered with a "Not Now."
We will keep our website up and as we transition, will want to create a way to keep in touch and continue the battle for our families, our freedom, and our future. We will also focus on assisting conservative Senate and House candidates, in places where we know our investment of time and energy can make a real difference. You can expect us to be active online as we do this and to regularly solicit your opinions and support. Too many big issues are at stake for us to sit on the sidelines.In the immediate time, we have to make sure that we pay all the bills of the campaign and end in the black, help our staff find ways to earn a living, and make sure that we don't lose the momentum of the past 14 months, but instead follow the plan:
REFLECT, REST, RENEW, and RE-BOOT!
I really welcome your input and thoughts during these coming days. Pray for us as we seek wisdom as to what steps we take now. Despite what some have thought, we really didn't have a "Plan B' in the wings--we always thought we'd be in this until the inauguration in January of 2009!
God has been so good to us! We can never fully express our gratitude for all you have done and how you have touched and blessed our lives. I truly hope I didn't let you down. I promise to you that I gave it all I had to the last minute and left it "all on the field." What is more amazing is how you were willing to be "poured out" to the point of empty in order to be with us all the way. I stand amazed by it all and overwhelmed with gratitude.
We will dust off, pick ourselves up off the canvas, and answer the bell for the next round, whatever that may be. We love you all, and trust that the journey has just begun!
With tired bodies and grateful hearts,
Mike and Janet Huckabee