In the first time that any one can remember, as far back as 1967, Warsaw has been privileged to have a line-up of candidates visit. That historic moment was Saturday afternoon on Buffalo Street in front of the courthouse.
With the temperatures around 34 degrees, but feeling like 21 degrees, over 100 gathered on the lawn of the Kosciusko County Courthouse lawn to hear Gov. Mike Pence, Lt. Gov. Sue Ellsperman, U.S. Congressman Marlin Stutzman, Secretary of State Connie Lawson, Auditor of State Suzanne Crouch, Kelly Mitchell candidate for state treasurer and Curt Nisly, candidate for State Rep. Distirct 22.
John Elliott, event coordinator, introduced county candidates present. These included Bob Conley, county commissioner, southern district; Aaron Rovenstine, sheriff; Jon Garber, county council; Michelle Puckett, county auditor; and Dave Wolkins, state representative District 18.
Pat Miller, NewsTalk 1190 WOWO, Fort Wayne, set the stage for the Road to Victory 2014 tour to arrive.
He shared stories of two athletes: Florence May Chadwick and Sir Roger Bannister. Chadwick was the first woman to swim the English Channel in both directions and swim from Catalina Island to the Coast of California, 21 miles. Bannister ran the first sub-four-minute mile.
Both athletes first attempts failed – panic, being unprepared, taking a win for granted. But their second attempts were successful.
Why did he tell those stories? “We’ve had some setbacks. Two years ago we had too many people claim the same name, as the same political party that you and I claim. But they became lax. They became lackadaisical. They sat on their haunches. If half of the Republicans that did not vote in the last election, who did vote in the one four years before, got off their lazy carcasses and went out to vote, we wouldn’t be fighting some of the fights we’re fighting today,” said Miller.
Lawson, Crouch and Mitchell were the first to speak to the crowd.
Lawson stating she will work to make sure every eligible citizen who has taken the responsibility to vote will have their vote counted. She also stated a vote for her allows Republican inspectors at the polls, having Republican candidates listed first on the ballot and the number of delegates at the state convention.
Crouch, who paraphrased a statement by President Abraham Lincoln — give to the people only what they cannot present for themselves, stated “we must attack inefficient government at all times, always deliver services to those that are less fortunate, but we must judge progress not by the amount of services we give people, but the number of people we get off the system.”
Mitchell noted this was a historic ticket, three women at the top of the ticket statewide. “All three of us have experience in the office that we are seeking … I promise you to serve you, give you my best each and every day …”
Prior to the program Warsaw Boy Scout Troop 715 posted the colors and led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance while The Backyard Brass provided pre-rally music and the Star Spangled Banner. The event was kicked off with prayer by Rev. Pastor John Lowe, Newlife Christian Church, Warsaw. (See related story)