Announcing my Candidacy
I officially announced my candidacy on February 28, 2018! Here’s a transcript of the speech I gave that night.
Hello and welcome!
Thank you all for coming tonight.
I have been overwhelmed by the support I have received over the past few months. The more people I talked to, and many of those people are in this room tonight, the more empowered I became to step up and make a difference
A little over a year ago my son Ben sent me a text message. Essentially, “Mom, could you run for Congress in 2018?” It was an entriguing proposition. The next morning I had a conversation with Mary and Barry McNulty (shout-out) and mentioned Ben’s text. I was absolutely floored when they looked at each other and said, “that’s not a bad idea”. Over the next few weeks I got encouraging responses from almost everyone I talked to. Mike and Kris Guest offered their support, my son Alex built a fantastic website and a campaign was born.
I have never been involved in politics. Politics today seems to be two opposing teams. If you don’t perfectly fit the profile for either team you can’t play. Unfortunately this seems to be the way many Americans feel. As a result, we have a Congress that is sharply divided along party lines and unable to reach bipartisan agreements.
But the truth is, the American people are not as polarized as the media would lead us to believe. We all want the United States to be a place of freedom, equality and opportunity. We prefer common sense over party-line rhetoric. We can agree to disagree on some things, while finding common ground in others.
The truth is, the American people are not as polarized as the media would lead us to believe. We can agree to disagree on some things, while finding common ground in others.
In order to for our government to reflect this, we need people in Congress who are willing to work together to find workable solutions.
I would like to be one of those people.
So yes, Ben, I will run for Congress in 2018.
I was born and raised in Wauwatosa. My father was a navy vet and UW grad who raised a son and 9 daughters. He was, for the time, a pretty typical Republican. He taught us the importance of family and education and personal responsibility and strength of character and giving those less fortunate a helping hand but not a handout. He took us hunting and fishing and we all enjoyed the beauty of the state of Wisconsin. He was a business owner and on the shelf in his home office was a mug with the face of Herbert Hoover. My parents were two of the frozen spectators at Reagan’s second inauguration.
I went to high school at Wauwatosa West then Creighton University and UW Medical School. My residency was at the National Children’s Hospital in DC. Since 1991 I have been a full-time pediatrician in Waukesha and have been a part of the lives of thousands of families. My husband and I raised six children here. I know the challenges facing District 5 all too well.
I love my job—it’s a great job that is very rewarding. But at this time I feel, humbly, that my presence is needed in congress. The country is facing skyrocketing medical costs, an opioid epidemic is destroying families, and a public health crisis involving gun violence brings terror to our cities, schools and churches. In the meantime Congress is paralyzed and ineffective. Healthcare is the perfect example. So much discussion about how to pay for insurance but almost nothing said about reducing waste or controlling cost increases. Physician input is needed to address all of these issues. Common sense input is needed so Congress can produce bipartisan agreements that provide lasting solutions. Congress needs members with real life experience who can relate to the people they serve.
Congress needs members with real life experience who can relate to the people they serve.
Jim Sensenbrenner has served the fifth district for almost 40 years. I admire and share his fiscal conservatism and appreciate his remarkable string of town hall meetings. My entire career has been about giving children their best possible future and I agree that a prosperous future for our children depends on minimal deficit spending today. But the fifth district and the US as a whole have changed in the past 40 years. Congress has a two year term so it can adapt to the changing needs of the country, it was not meant to be a body of lifetime politicians staking out their territory and making every session a tug of war. That has only given us is policies that flip-flop every time the balance of power shifts and government shut-downs followed by poorly crafted budgets.
Congress as it is today is not functioning.
It needs to change.
I want to be a part of that change.
As you may know my opponent is well funded and will be a challenge to beat. But where he has money, I, clearly, have people. In the next day or two I will send you all a link to my web site and Facebook page. I would ask that you pass it on to as many people as possible to encourage voters to come out for the primary on August 14th. It’s time for the real voices of District 5 to be heard.
Thank you all for coming; feel free to add your names to our email list. I appreciate your support.