On May 25, 1961, President John F. Kennedy announced the seemingly impossible goal of reaching the moon by the end of the 1960's.
"I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of landing a man on the Moon and returning him safely to the Earth."
Just eight years later, Astronauts Armstrong and Aldrin became the first humans to walk on the moon ultimately fulfilling President Kennedy's challenge. America and the world continue to reap the benefits of President Kennedy's inspiration and dedication to this day.
Just imagine America today had we enjoyed such leadership on energy independence the past eight years, rather than the failed energy policies of Bush, Cheney and my opponent Robin Hayes, the oil industry's #1 Representative in Congress.
With Robin Hayes profiting from as much as $23 million invested in the oil industry, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand why he just told the Fayetteville Observer that oil drilling is his biggest issue. Really - not jobs, the economy, health care, the war in Iraq, alternative energy - or any other issue that impacts the bottom line of working families. After ten year in Congress, Robin Hayes says his priority is oil drilling. Mine is sustainable energy independence.
At the time of President Kennedy's speech, America's space program was in it's infancy. Even many NASA employees doubted whether the ambitious goal could be met. Yet, President Kennedy's inspirational challenge produced the greatest sudden burst of technological creativity, and the largest commitment of resources ever made by any nation in peacetime, employing more than 400,000 Americans and utilizing the support of over 20,000 industrial firms and universities.
It wasn't easy, and that was the point.
"We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win."
When I thought of what President Kennedy's inspiration was able to accomplish for us in just eight short years, as opposed to what President Bush and Robin Hayes have done to us in that same amount of time, I had to stand up and say "Enough." Just imagine having leaders today, so much like President Kennedy, who's deeds matched their actions, and inspired the best in all of us.
Imagine America today if Robin Hayes had meant it in 2001 when he vowed to vote against Fast Track Trade Authority. Imagine America today if Robin Hayes had meant it in 2005 when he vowed to vote against sending our jobs out of the country. Imagine America today if Robin Hayes had meant it in 2006 when he vowed "Most troops will be home by 2008," or when he insisted "The economy around the country is very, very strong. Growth continues." Imagine America today if for the past eight years we had leaders committed to energy independence instead of just oil interests.
I not only imagine an America where our leaders' actions match their words, I BELIEVE in that America, President Kennedy's America, and am committed to bringing that kind of inspiration and integrity back to Washington and North Carolina's 8th District seat. I hope you'll stand with me.