Jennifer Nackerud for Congress
A little bit about the journey of running for US Congress
I was scrolling through Facebook one day (because, let’s face it: I spend too much time on there, like everyone else), and came across a few simple pie charts a friend posted, depicting the difference between the demographics of our nation’s population versus the demographics of Congress. I “liked”, commented, and moved on. This is new-wave “activism”, right? We click, comment, repost, and repeat. And I’m as guilty as anyone. There was something about that bit article, though, that stuck with me through that evening, and the next, and the next.
I grew up as a little girl, in rural Southern Colorado, who invited friends over to play “campaign” (I had a map of the US pinned to my wall and was running on the platform of adding a state by collecting mud at the base of the Mississippi River. It sounded crazy then, but we recently elected a man whose platform was to build a giant wall.) I gave my first political speech in the seventh grade, when I championed for a girl named Jackie to earn a spot on student council. By the end of high school, I had won thousands of dollars in scholarship funds by competing in Constitutional speech contests (in related news: I never got asked to the prom), had been elected Governor of the Missouri Girls’ State program, and had been a paid staff-member on a US Senate campaign. Fast forward fifteen years, and here I was, sitting on a couch, “liking” statuses, and huffing and puffing at social issues as though I was helpless to make a change.
Call it providence, fate, dumb luck, or a simple ability to recognize it because it was on my mind, but days after pondering my role in change, I opened up one of the Colorado Libertarian emails I usually ignore. A scrappy little party, the Libertarians had a few candidates who had to drop out of a various races, for a variety of reasons. They were asking, simply, for anyone willing to volunteer their name for ballots. The public doesn’t realize there are options if all they see is one red line and one blue line when they’re in the voting booth. Presence matters, and if we want to educate the American public to recognize they have more choices, we have to have people willing to go out on a limb and at least try.
So folks, this is me … trying. I am excited to be reaching inside to the places I’ve stored my childhood hopes and dreams. I am excited to hopefully inspire others to rekindle their own aspirations. I am excited to start conversations, to learn as much as I can, and to serve as a reminder that we are not bound to political machine agendas. WE are the people … us! You, and me, and our neighbors.
Here’s to an exciting few months; I look forward to getting to know you more and hope you’ll take the time to engage in the political process.
I am looking forward to exploring community topics and getting to know a little more about you and what's important to you.