Ben wins nomination for the Democratic Party in the 30th district

I’m honored by the faith that Culpeper, Madison, and Orange Democrats have placed in me. I’m also happy that Annette Hyde is running for Board of Supervisors in Madison. We need Democrats like Annette, and I plan to help her in any way I can.

I’m very optimistic about the future of the Democratic Party. I have been 100% open and honest about my unwavering support for individual liberty in every speech I’ve given throughout this campaign, even when my beliefs clash with the established party platform. By nominating me, the Democratic Party has shown a willingness to embrace change in the wake of the disaster last November, to consider bold forward-thinking ideas, and most of all to demonstrate that as progressives our core values are liberty, inclusion, and tolerance. The local party leaders have been gracious, supportive, and are rallying behind the central message of my campaign: that we are the party of freedom.

One of the first things I did after my nomination was to send Delegate Freitas an email introducing myself and telling him I’m looking forward to a vigorous discussion on the nature of freedom and liberty. He responded with a very gracious congratulations, and told me how much he appreciated my emphasis on individual liberty. I think we’re both students of the Constitution, though we disagree on the role government should play in advancing individual liberty. I think we’re both looking forward to making our case to the people of the 30th district.

Next I’ll be relaunching my campaign, establishing a campaign headquarters, hiring a permanent campaign manager and staff, and organizing volunteers. I’ve asked two local activists, Ren LeVally and Peg Clifton, to be my acting campaign managers during this interim. Stay tuned for news of future campaign events.

Updated: Here’s the text of Peg’s seconding speech for my nomination at Saturday’s convention.

I registered as a delegate committed to Ben Hixon and second his nomination, and would like to say a few words about why I choose to do so:

It is not because I agree with all of Ben’s positions, because I do not, but he brings at least two things that I think are necessary to the success of the Party going forward, if that is what it intends to do: The Party needs youth and ideas, and Ben clearly has both — most importantly, innovative ideas that are relevant to our community and its mostly rural population.

Underpinning all of Ben’s positions is the concept of “Effective Freedom,” meaning that in order for all of our citizens to full participate in society they must be free from the cycle of poverty, free from fear of discrimination, free to pursue good education, jobs and health — all things that Ben, like the rest of us, believe are universal human rights.

I think his proposal for Technical Trade Schools is an idea that will improve the economy here, create a pool of trained workers, and make us a leader in this area. He supports the Virginia Food Freedom Act, which provides assistance for small farmers and commonsense solutions free of excessive regulation.

He supports expanding affordable access to reliable broadband, because, like electricity, clean water, and public education, full access to communications is a basic right, even if we live in the sticks.

So, for these and many other reasons I second the nomination of Ben Hixon to be the Candidate for the Democratic Party for the 30th District, in the Virginia House of Delegates in 2017.