|Mercer drops out of 8th District race |
|Posted: Friday, March 26, 2010 12:03 pm |
|Luther Mercer II, candidate for the Eighth District U.S. Congressional seat, has announced he is ending his campaign, citing an inability to raise the necessary funds to mount a viable campaign. |
“I would like to thank my family, friends and supporters for believing in me as I pursued this position,” said Mercer, who announced in December he would seek the post being vacated by U.S. Rep. John Tanner, who is retiring.
“During the last three months, I have traveled throughout rural west Tennessee, meeting with farmers, teachers, laborers, government officials and others who a have common and fundamental belief,” said Mercer.
“They believe that our communities, region and country are economically stagnant, and they want to hear new ideas and smarter solutions to problems they face, which could positively impact their daily lives.”
While he shares their belief in these ideas, a lack of funding became an issue.
“I understand that options for free media coverage can only do so much,” he said.
“Without funds to advertise and market my candidacy, it would be difficult to convey a consistent message and reach the audiences I hoped to reach.”
Mercer said he learned a great deal from his candidacy – seeing the challenges people face, as well as refining his approach to address the issues facing this country. He noted that he respects the office he was seeking and maintained a sense of humility about asking voters to support him.
“We are at a crossroads in our region and country where extremes dominate the political landscape, where money is necessary to have substantial influence within political circles, and where ideas are placed in a distant third or fourth level of importance when it comes to making policies to improve our nation.
“That’s not to say that certain voices haven’t always been a part of the process, but the current process favors the well financed, as it drowns out the average voice who is speaking as loudly as possible for government to change for the better.”
Mercer said if the current system is to remain, then people must set greater standards of accountability for elected representatives, and expect excellence in their performance as public servants, where they should put improving the lives of their constituents ahead of political gain.
“We must always remember that as we criticize our government and political leadership for failing to serve the people, our government is a direct reflection of the people.
“We elect those who represent us, and we are the only ones who can change the system. This should be remembered in this election or any other; we must demand better.”