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Dear Friends and Supporters,

Well, here we are, the first week into something we never thought we’d experience: the Donald Trump presidency. Like you, I’m sure; I remain stunned at that reality.

And I’m sure you have read or watched the events in Washington the past week. Untruths are now called “alternative facts.” We risk losing our freedom of speech, and freedom of the press. We risk seeing further growth in the inequality gap, and concentration of wealth to the top 0.1%. We also risk seeing a roll back in the progress we have achieved in making America a better place to live, with better health care for all Americans, protections to our environment and planet, rights for women, and protection of programs which benefit those over age 65.

I am determined to fight the new Administration’s stated ambition to roll back America’s progress. And fight we must. I have spent a lot of time thinking about the 2016 elections, their outcomes and their meaning. Let me share a few of my thoughts with you today.

First and foremost, the disappointment I feel over losing my own race against Rep. Tom McClintock is more than offset by the gratitude I feel toward you and the thousands—literally thousands—of people, folks just like you, who took an interest in our effort, who contributed money (in excess of $100,000!), who walked precincts, made GOTV calls, hosted coffees and other gatherings, posted yard signs, attended rallies and did all of the other kinds of things that make our representative democracy vibrant, and worth defending.

Second, I have been doing a lot of reading. At one point, despite snowy December weather, I hiked up into the Yosemite Sierra High Country and spent a few nights amid that incomparable splendor, accompanied only by the necessary winter equipment, provisions, and a special book: Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s A Fighting Chance. The scenery, the serenity and the book all combined to re-charge my physical and spiritual batteries. I returned to my home re-energized and fully committed to the ideals and the goals I did my best to articulate and further during the course of my campaign.

Third, I am more convinced than ever that those ideals and goals are central to the American Dream, our Democracy, and to our sense of national purpose. I believe that more people than not, across the country and within California’s Fourth Congressional District, share our commitment to that dream, and that national purpose

2018 will provide another opportunity for the people of America, including those of us in this Congressional District, to speak out on the issues of the time, and to vote on the direction of our country, and of our communities. At some appropriate point in the future I will make my plans for that election known.

But now is not the time for that. Now is the time to focus on party building, on organizing for the future, and on opposing the President and the Republican-controlled Congress each and every time they try to drag our country backwards. Now is the time to devote our time and energy to truly big issues, not to an individual campaign. That time will come, but not yet.

Over the next couple of months, I will be traveling through the 4th CD to see and talk to folks a bit about the future, to be sure, but to really focus on the present, on what we need to do now. And, I will be thanking people in person, for what they did to help my campaign in 2016, and for what I know they will do to help our beloved country going forward.

Warmly, and with deep appreciation,