Gretchen Driskell

MI 2015 Jefferson-Jackson Dinner - May 15, 2015

Gretchen Driskell
May 15, 2015— Detroit, Michigan
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Well thank you all tonight. It's a great honor and privilege to be here as a congressional candidate it's a long time I've been involved with public office. I was a local elected official for many years along with my fellow congressional Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence. I was mayor in Saline and fortunate to get elected with a lot of help from a lot of people here the Statehouse in 2012 and we defeated an incumbent Republican some of you might have remember that race.

So, you know, I ran for a state house because you know I worked hard, we all worked hard, in all of our communities across the state to make a better place for our kids for our families for our environment and we were getting a raw deal in Lansing, and I was really upset about it I know all of us were really upset about, so we worked really, really hard to try to get the majority in 2012. Got close, you know, and then we worked really, really hard last year to get the majority and I also worked alongside some of our woman competitive seats behind what I call shared the love, but that was shared with me in 2012 and tried to work hard to- to teach people on how to run a competitive campaign to share the things that I learned and I was really fortunate about that.

And the bad part was, we didn't get the kind of votes that we needed, we didn't get enough votes to get majority in the house, but we learned a lot and I got sort of fed up again which is kind of what happens, you know, we get fed up and we get angry we get frustrated and we want to do something about it. So that's why we're all here tonight right we're frustrated. We believe in a better Michigan for all of us.

So ah the 7th Congressional has an interesting district. As mayor and state Rep, I've had experiences with different candidates. I was very fortunate to have Mark Schauer as my congressperson when I was mayor, and I know that we have the potential in the some of the Congressional to elect a Democrat because we know that if we work hard enough we can get a Democrat back in that seat, and we are working very hard every day to get a Democrat back in that seat because if we get the Democrat back in that seat, we also will get more Democrats in the house because there are six swing districts seats in the house that could become Democratic seats and I know some of my fellow House Democrats are really anxious, just like I am, to get that majority back in the house so we can do the things that we need to be doing for the people in the state of the Michigan and for the environment in Michigan because it's really important for our future.

So I had some really good news this week that I wanted to share with you. Mr. Walberg, the incumbent, some of you may not know him yet, they can come in- it was just put in the top 20 most vulnerable incumbents in the country by the Republican. [applause] Now this is something that we knew- we all know that he's vulnerable. As Democrats we know he's vulnerable because we know he doesn't represent our mission values so to have the Republicans put him in the top 20 national most vulnerable incumbents is just reassuring in a lot of ways to us Democrats. However, it's very challenging because that raises the bar right for my work because I have to continue to out raise him financially.

I do I am working with a lot of people and we did out raise him in our first quarter just one reason he's vulnerable. We're continuing to work every day to outrace him in the second quarter, and I just want you to know that we do have a very strong team that's working very hard, we've had wonderful support from our leadership in DC and I know everyone's here tonight. I'm sorry I was- I'm late because I had to go back to Lenawee County because their annual fundraiser is tonight also, and everybody in Lenawee County is really excited that's where Mr. Wahlberg is right now.

It's where his home is, and we know that we can defeat him and we can bring the true Michigan values to Washington and have somebody that's really going to work for the people of Michigan, that are going to work for our children and for a working family so I pre shake your time and give me the opportunity to talk about our race please jump on board. It is a national race, it will stay a national race. We working hard I have a track record, I've run against incumbents every time, and I've won so please support us. Thank you.