I am writing this letter because I believe my constituents and the people of Michigan deserve to know the truth about what is going on in Lansing. I came to Lansing to bring transparency and authenticity to the office and to be a strong voice for the people in my district and Michigan. After over two weeks of being held out of caucus, I was finally given the opportunity to meet with Speaker Cotter this past Thursday.
Regarding the multiple breaches of confidentiality that were reported in the paper and used to question my credibility and integrity, the Speaker said that his words were misrepresented and there was not a list of breaches of confidentiality. Instead, he shared with me a short list of complaints regarding courtesy faux pas' that I have made, such as not always letting leadership know ahead of time when I was going to vote "No" on a bill, or not always calling ahead when speaking outside of my district to the representative of that district. This is standard operating procedure in Lansing and Washington and it is clear I have not complied to their satisfaction and have stepped on a few toes.
Had I known the charges, I would have been able to share the innocuous reasons for my imperfect compliance to their standards. For instance regarding letting leadership know ahead of time when I will be voting "No", while I am on the floor or in committee, my first and foremost focus is to make sure I understand the bills to the best of my ability and vote the right way for the people of my district. This means many times right up until the vote I am hearing testimony on a bill, reading fiscal analysis, talking with the sponsor of the bill or looking up further information on it. I cast a "No" vote when I believe the legislation will grow government, cost the taxpayers more money, impede on our freedoms, or is being pushed through rapidly without the time to conduct the research I feel is required for the bill.
And as far as traveling, I have been speaking around the state on a regular basis for the past few years and am now also campaigning for Republican National Committee Woman. Many times my speaking engagements are scheduled with short notice, sometimes I do not know where and when I will be speaking until I look at my schedule the day or two before, and I am also not in the habit of calling ahead for approval before each event.
The other infractions shared with me on Thursday included: asking for a different seat in the beginning of the term, my Facebook posts (these were not discussed in any detail), and requesting the swing of my office door be corrected.
I am truly disappointed that these issues were not brought to my attention along the way and cleared up long ago, especially given that this has been dragging out all the while I am in a campaign for Republican National Committee Woman and during the omnibus and education budget votes. These minor infractions could have been quickly and easily resolved, yet I was tried, convicted, and sentenced by leadership without even given the opportunity to know the charges or defend myself.
Even so, the Lord gives me strength to press on and to continue fighting to pass the torch of liberty and prosperity on to our children and grandchildren. I will continue to stand for limited government so that our future generations can experience opportunity and pursue their dreams without being held back by an overburdensome government. The larger government gets, the less freedom we have and I will continue to be a strong voice for taxpayers in saying the government should live within it's budget and not take more and more money from our families or interfere in the markets by picking winners and losers.
I think there were many other ways to go about this; however, it is up to leadership to decide the type of leaders they will be, how they will lead, and what that will look like in instituting and enforcing compliance of the members. As of this time, I have still not heard back from leadership as to if I am allowed back into caucus.
I am new and maybe I am wrong, but to me the infractions I've made simply don't merit the punishment that I have received. I'm not sure if this happened because they're not sure what to do with a confident nurse/homeschool/soccer mom with a strong voice, or if it's because some are afraid of having a conservative grassroots voice as the next Republican National Committee Woman. Or maybe it is just typical Lansing insider politics. But regardless of the reason, I came to Lansing to bring transparency and shed light and I will not be dissuaded in my responsibility to do that.
So for my constituents, I can assure you that I am doing everything I can to bring a strong voice of transparency, limited government, life, lower taxes, free markets, and individual liberty to continue to earn the trust that you placed in me in my position. I will not turn my back on you but will continue to fight for you. I do not work for Lansing, I work for you, who sent me to Lansing to do the job I said I would do.
And for my fellow Republicans, my belief in American exceptionalism and the values of our Republican platform have not wavered. We have some major battles ahead in this upcoming presidential race and we will need strong and steadfast leadership at the top representing Michigan, and if elected as your next Republican National Committee Woman, I am committed to doing just that.
And to my fellow Representatives, now that you have finally heard the charges against me, you will have to decide in your heart how to respond and what all this means. I did everything in my power to try and resolve this privately, but cannot stand silently by while false accusations are perpetuated against me, and as an extension of that, my district I represent. I will continue to serve with passion and integrity and work with anyone interested in making Michigan stronger, where our children can prosper and raise their families. I appreciate the different voices and thoughts we each bring to the table and believe that only makes us stronger as we consider our steps from various angles. We were each duly elected by the people of our districts and I would hope each be given a voice in the discussion. I look forward in continuing to work with each of you and the debate and discussions we will have in finding solutions to the issues that face our state.
These last few weeks have been trying to be sure, but the hardships I have endured and the arrows I have taken are small in comparison to the men and women who have paid a much higher cost for our freedom, from the Founding Fathers to the men and women who serve in our armed forces. I alone can only do so much, but am still responsible to do what I can to and be obedient where God is calling me. But if we stand together, with God's providence, I believe we can lead the way as a nation of freedom and break the chains of tyranny around the world.
I appreciate your prayers in all of this! May God give us the courage in all circumstances to stand for what is right, and may we be a light to a world with so much darkness!
With Firm Reliance on Divine Providence,