Will Hammer: Thank you, and an announcement
Though I wish the results had been better, I am very happy with them and proud of my campaign. I got 22,602 votes, and I appreciate every single one. I am very thankful for all of the support I have received throughout my campaign against Goodlatte. I want to thank those who volunteered, did pro-bono work, donated, and of course voted for me.
I want to especially thank Robert Sarvis who was the catalyst that made me want to finally run for office, for being a great mentor, and for his support. I would like to thank Brian Hiner of Roanoke Valley Libertarians for always being there for me and tirelessly volunteering his time and efforts to my campaign and the libertarian cause. I also want to thank Todd Lyle and Earl Roberts for shooting my two videos. And of course, I could not go without thanking my whole family and all of my friends for their support throughout the campaign. I particularly want to thank my mother Amie, sister Trinity, and grandmother Fran (Nana). They were always there for me with words of encouragement and support.
A victory was the ultimate result I was hoping for of course, but that did not happen. I seriously do believe though that my campaign was a huge success, a win. I was able to get people to talk about the role of government and learn about libertarianism, I got to meet a lot of great people and have great discussions, I gained a lot of experience in every facet of running a campaign, I learned a lot about myself and grew as a person, and I did better than any Libertarian has done in a Federal race in Virginia. I got over 22k votes, I made Goodlatte spend over $1.2 million compared to my $3412.75, that means I spent almost exactly 15 cents per vote, compared to Goodlatte’s ~$9 per vote. Just think what I could have done on a level playing field with a fraction of his funds, or even yet, comparable funds.
I took election week off so I could focus 100% on the campaign the last few days, as I had maintained full time employment throughout this entire campaign, and be able to relax and decompress after a stressful 6 months full of campaigning. I found myself waking up at 7:30am the morning after Election Day energized and in great spirits, not quite what I expected my feelings to be the morning after not winning and campaigning nonstop for 36 straight hours. I was planning on sleeping in most of today and relaxing the rest of this week, but I found myself ready to go and continue what I started. This campaign will not be my last, and I am not waiting two years to run against Goodlatte. I have told a select few that I had plans to continue running and to do so on the state level as well. I am entering the race for Virginia House of Delegates and will run against Dickie Bell. And win or lose in that race, I plan on running against Goodlatte again in 2016.
To continue to be active within the freedom movement and advance libertarianism, I decided to resurrect Freedom Gulch. I founded Freedom Gulch in 2012 with two friends. We mostly had a Facebook presence and just shared pertinent articles to freedom and libertarianism. It was short lived and never saw its full potential. This time around I am energized to continue with the momentum from my campaign to see the full potential of Freedom Gulch. I have a dozen contributors and hoping to add more in the near future as well. We plan on publishing original content on a regular basis, which will be a lot easier with so many contributors. You will find opinion pieces on current events and libertarian philosophy, interviews, short documentaries, lifestyle articles, blogs, memes, macros, cartoons and comic strips, and news that pertains to libertarianism. I am committed, as are my contributors, to grow Freedom Gulch to its full potential. We are mostly located in Virginia, but hope to grow more nationally and become a news and media organization synonymous with the freedom movement, libertarianism, and being a watchdog against government abuses.
So to those who have helped and supported me, this is just the beginning. I am in it for the long haul and plan to continue to grow libertarianism, have meaningful discussion on the role of government and our failed two party system, as well as win an election to fight for freedom within the gut of leviathan, Washington D.C.
Will Hammer was the Libertarian Party nominee for the Sixth District seat in Congress in Virginia.