Letter to the Editor

Listen, I need you to understand why I’m so passionate about politics at a time when it feels like theres no one you can believe in anymore and no one left who wont sell you out. Getting these in the mail brought back a pretty vivid memory that had a huge impact on me and definitely melted a lot of the skepticism I had about ever getting involved in politics at all.

Photo provided by Mandi Franks.

In 2010, I was honored to be a part of Josh Brecheen’s first campaign as Senator – the door knocking, the flyers, the fairs, rodeos, parades, all the meet-and-greet events, all of us with coffee late night mail organizing – but more importantly, the speeches. Listening to this new politician talk about all his ideas for our state’s Senate and how excited he was to get started.
After all the hard work and giving his word to fight for us to every group he spoke to, we had a victory that election night. After what probably felt like a rollercoaster of a first term for him, the time came to hit the ground running again, and I wouldn’t miss it.
On our first day back to the office, my friend, now Senator Brecheen (!), brought out a few boxes and said to the group, “We still have a good amount of material left. What’s the best use for what we have left first?” to get us all brainstorming.
I decided to take a box and see what we had. What I ended up with was a box of flyers, flyers that felt like I hadn’t seen them in a lot longer than it actually had been. He had written all the issues he promised he would fight for if we would give him the opportunity to serve in the Senate, and accomplishments he wanted to achieve in his first term.
As I was looking through his list I realized he did these. As a freshman State Senator managing a really challenging first term – he did these.
He did every one of these things. A politician. Did what he said.
At the tim,e I didn’t realize the full impact this one moment would have on me but I understood how much that mattered. I said, “Instead of making anything new why not cross out every “I will” on this list and in your handwriting sign “I DID” after everything you promised us. You literally accomplished all of this.”
He liked the idea and I’m pretty sure the first new pieces we sent out were these 2010 flyers highlighting an actual politician that kept his word. I never forgot that even after  another busy campaign season as he went on to serve another term of keeping his promises.
In the face of all the distrust, disillusion, and to be honest, complete disappointment politics and even most politicians, have become to every one of us… I got these today, all these years later,  and I remembered.
I also remembered it’s okay not to give up.
Mandi Franks

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