I want to sincerely thank you for the honor of re-electing me to the Washington State Senate.
As I reflect upon the events of election night, I am nearly overwhelmed with powerful emotions. There is no question that it was a day of disappointment and worry about the days ahead.
The easiest thing in the world would be to retreat into our corners, take shelter among those who share our opinions, and nurse our despair–-thinking all the while with disdain about how racist, xenophobic, and misogynistic the rest of the country is because of the racist, xenophobic, and misogynistic things said by the man now elected our president.
We cannot do this.
We do not know the reasons why half of the country disagreed with us on such a fundamental choice, but the only way we can know is to step forward toward one another, to engage, to recognize that the aspirations of those who voted for Trump may not match his revolting rhetoric, and to seek to understand how and why this might be
Our support for equality for all, a woman’s right to choose, environmental protection, and so much more are our aspirations, and we will never progress by retreating from those who disagree with us –or worse, yelling at them loudly from our corners.
Just as unity was our message in the expectation of our victory, so must it be our message in the reality of our defeat.
I strongly believe that our common ground is our common humanity. It is there that hearts and minds are understood, touched, and changed.
However, we can never allow our country, or our state, to go backward. While we must strive for common ground and understanding, we must also tirelessly defend those core values that we hold most dear.
Know that when I return to Olympia I will strive to find common ground, but I will also do everything in my power to protect and advance choice, equality, and the environment while fully funding our children's schools.
It remains an absolute honor to serve you.
-Sen. Kevin Ranker