Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Thank You!

I don’t know if it was the excitement of winning, the outpouring of support, or all the caffeine I consumed while crunching return numbers from the precincts, but I didn’t get much sleep last night. The last twenty-four hours have been a blur, so I want to send out a bulk “Thank You.”

I am trying to return every call and text, as well as reply to messages online. And that is exactly why we won last night—because of people like you. It would be dishonest and unfair of me to say, “I won,” because I only cast one vote. We won because of your support.

I’m not sure if we should call it a traditional campaign or something out of the ordinary, but it was truly a grassroots movement. I never put an ad in any newspaper or cut a commercial for the radio; I didn’t send a postcard or make robo calls. I just tried to explain what I stand for, and then asked you to spread the word.

You retweeted. You liked. You shared. You favorited. You donated. You put up signs. You came to fundraisers. You told your friends to vote. I could not have won without the #MannFann movement.

Don’t get me wrong—I wanted to put ads in the paper, and I hope to send out postcards ahead of the November election, but I just didn’t have the funds to do those things. We raised just over $2,000, and we spent roughly $1,800, most of which was on yard signs. From my very first speech I billed myself as, “a self-proclaimed tightwad, an unapologetic cheapskate” that knows, “how to stretch every dollar and pinch every penny.” While I vowed to take that mindset to Columbia, it also rang true on our shoestring campaign budget.

Which is what makes me so thankful for you. I’ll take a handful of eager supporters over a check from a PAC any day. My largest donation was $100; many gave $10 or less. In the end, it was your votes and enthusiasm that pushed us to victory.

It was you recent graduates who educated yourself to the process and voted for the first time; it was you grandparents who had never cast a vote before yesterday; it was those of you who left for work early, gave up your lunch break, or had a late dinner because you went to the polls. I can’t thank you enough.

I also want to say thank you to Alicia, Reagan, TJ, and the rest of our family for supporting us through this crazy life change. My wife has been my number one supporter, and she deserves more praise than I can give her.

We can’t stop now. I’m going to be asking you to do it all again this fall. Together, we can keep demanding better. Thank you!


Al Rende said...

Hey Tommy,
Congratulations. I wanted to thank you for taking the time wish my granddaughter a happy birthday. I always loved that my former State Representative now Senator John Yudichak found time to connect with his constituents in such ways.
Last time we spoke I mentioned the need to change the delivery of social services in our community. Perhaps I could have posed the concern to you in a question of which I will do now.
As State Representative what will you do to clearly define deficits in service delivery and improve any deficits found in our district?
Al Rende

Tommy Mann said...

Hello Al. Thank you, and it was my pleasure to wish Alyssa a happy birthday. I appreciate your question, as there is certainly a deficit of social service delivery in our district. One of the more popular issues has been with DSS, and there is a new director at both the State level as well as Union County. Both directors are highly qualified, have good ideas, and are already making a positive impact.

I have been drawing attention to two bills that were introduced during the last legislative year, the Normalcy Bill and Reporting Bill, both of which are designed to improve the DSS, specifically in the realm of foster children and foster parents. If I am elected in November I will fight for their passage.

If elected I will seek to continue improving the system by supporting any new bills like the two I just mentioned, as well as by demanding accountability beginning at the top. No system is perfect, but I will do whatever I can to help our state get as close to perfection as we can.

One way to do that is by listening to people. I'd love to hear any ideas you have to make improvements in specific ways. Please feel free to keep me posted on anything you are concerned about. Also, if you would like a faster reply next time you can email me or call me at (864) 426-3706.

Thanks again, and good to hear from you.

Al Rende said...

Thank you. Your return message impacted me in two ways. First it helped me feel I can have a connection to the policies that impact my family. And Second it helped me feel I can get involved and perhaps make a difference. I will email you my latest struggle as it requires protecting the dignity of the one most affected by the regulatory snare.

Tommy Mann said...

Thank you Al, and I look forward to your email. I hope everyone is doing well.
You certainly can have a connection to the policies that impact your family, because a Representative is supposed to represent the people. I don't want to go to Columbia for myself, but for you and the 38,000 others in District 42. I want to do all that I can to help you and everyone else. Thank you for letting me know how I can do that if I am elected in November. Take care.