Dear Friend,

Needless to say, this isn’t what I’d hoped to share today. As you surely know by now, we came up short last night. While I’m very proud of our strong showing, it wasn’t enough to get us over the finish line. And right now, lives are at stake as we band together to fight a pandemic that threatens all of us. The virus doesn’t care how anyone voted. So, when I called Sam Page last night to congratulate him, I also offered him my support. He has difficult decisions to make in the days ahead. I trust he will have the strength and wisdom to find the right path for this community. 

That leaves you. I will never adequately find all the words to say thanks for your friendship over this crazy year. Your support, your kind wishes, and your courage in believing in me… there are no greater blessings. 

Well, OK, maybe one greater blessing. When I told Gabriel the news this morning, I was worried that he’d be heartbroken. Instead, he blew me away. As I lay bleary-eyed in bed at 6 am and told him what happened, he smiled and said: “that just means you still get to be the County Assessor – that’s so silly, Daddy!” (And then he asked if he could borrow my phone and play a game.) 

Gabriel is right: the people gave me a job to do. I applied for a different one, and they said “no thanks, not this time.” So now it’s time for me, Megan, and Gabriel to grow where we’re planted. Megan and I will continue our respective work to make this community a better and fairer place for all of us. And Gabriel will get ready for kindergarten – whatever that may look like during the confusing days ahead. 

This bittersweet moment is neither an end nor a beginning. But it sure is a great time to take stock of one’s blessings. I am blessed with an abundance of friends who care. Above all: thank you for being one.  

 Be well, and be safe, 

Jake