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Hayworth kicks off Senate race

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Posted: Thursday, February 18, 2010 12:00 am

Today I stand before you to officially announce my candidacy for the United States Senate from the great state of Arizona. You and I will be part of what will be a classic political match-up, with confrontation:  John McCain and the Washington establishment on one side, and “We The People” on the other. The other side has the establishment but I will take you – and everyone else.

It’s the everyman and woman that knows these are very difficult times for our country. Unemployment remains stubbornly staggeringly high. Millions of Arizonans have seen their retirement savings dwindle. The small businesses that are the lifeblood of our economy won’t take on new workers because they are afraid of what Washington will do to them.

The establishment bails out big business yet ignores the needs and requests of smaller operations.

The current Democratic leadership in the White House, House and Senate are not up to the challenges we face. Their solution – more and bigger government, reckless bailouts, endless deficit spending, ignoring our Constitution, higher taxes and a radical takeover of our health care system – cannot solve our problems. In fact, their so-called remedies would only make a bad situation worse.

Arizona needs strong, reliable conservative leadership based on constitutional principles to stand up to the Democrats’ liberal leftist agenda and offer the conservative solutions we need to get our country moving again. With your help, I will provide that leadership.

My governing philosophy is no secret. It is based on limited government, free markets, a stable currency and a strong national defense. My belief in God is also no secret. And that’s why I believe America’s best days can rise just beyond the horizon still in front of us.

Like Ronald Reagan, I believe that government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. And government isn’t just too big, it’s also too greedy. Washington always expects you to tighten your belt, but will never tighten its own. Case in point. Barack Obama’s new budget freezes spending on top of an 84 percent increase in discretionary spending that he signed into law. Now that’s bad enough, but the freeze also is delayed for one year.

This so-called “freeze” is an obvious election-year stunt designed to mask Obama’s reckless spending – and sadly, but perhaps predictably, John McCain has endorsed it. Yet John is already out there, attacking me for fiscal irresponsibility, even though I have a better lifetime rating from Citizens Against Government Waste than he does. John is choosing to focus on the only area where he has a conservative reputation – but it is a reputation that is, to put it mildly, somewhat exaggerated.

After all, John McCain voted for the $850 billion bailout – but then said, “It’s not enough.” So he proposed spending $300 billion to buy up every bad mortgage in America. And did I mention that his bank bailout vote included $150 billion in earmarks. The very spending he claims to oppose.

He also supports a cap and trade plan that would impose a costly bureaucracy, raise energy costs and in the process raise taxes on American families.

You cannot call yourself a fiscal conservative and stubbornly push a $2.6 trillion bailout for illegal aliens – and that’s what it is, a legal bailout – in defiance of the wishes of the people. What John McCain tried to do with his illegal alien bailout is precisely what Obama did with health care. Both failed because neither listened to the people.

We can do better, and when you send me to the United States Senate we will do better.

On the radio, it was my job to talk. As your senator, it will be my job to listen. In countless conversations with Arizonans, you have made it clear that a seat in the United States Senate is something that has to be earned. I also believe that in America, a Senate seat is something that has to be earned. This Senate seat does not belong to any one party or any one personality – and it most certainly does not belong to the Washington establishment. It belongs to the people of Arizona, and they will decide who occupies it for the next six years.

That’s why, if elected, I pledge that I will serve no more than two terms – provided the people will have me even that long. I’ve discovered since leaving Congress being back home, speaking at Tea Party events and engaging the grassroots, is good for one’s head and heart. So after two terms, I’ll come home for good. This seat belongs to the people, and there it shall be returned.

The cynics will say this is a hollow promise. To them I say this: Record me now. Use this statement as an albatross around my neck 12 years hence. But you won’t have to. Because by then it will be time for another citizen, another conservative, to take my place.

Let me make one other thing clear right up front. While John and I have, to put it mildly, out sized personalities, it is my intention to run this campaign on the issues. I have the utmost respect and admiration for what John McCain has given our country. But I do have serious and profound disagreements with John about the choices he’s made as senator.


J.D. Hayworth represented Ahwatukee Foothills in Congress until unseated by Harry Mitchell in 2005. For more information on Hayworth’s campaign, visit www.JDForSenate.com.

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