I know, I’m a day late to this. Ben Collins dropped out of the Republican race for lieutenant governor yesterday:
When I came back from Afghanistan and entered this campaign for lieutenant governor, it was clear to me how important new leadership in Madison was for the future of our state. As I have traveled across Wisconsin and visited with thousands of families and business owners, my initial view about the need for new leadership has been confirmed.
But as this hard-fought, six-person race for lieutenant governor has developed, I have begun to question whether my passion and ideas for Wisconsin’s future are best used in the lieutenant governor’s race or in the race for governor itself. Where can I most aggressively contribute to the pursuit for new leadership in Wisconsin? How can I best advance the goals of business owners trying to create new jobs? Who really is our best chance to turn Madison upside down and get our state back on track?
In answering each of these questions I arrive at the same conclusion: Scott Walker. As I’ve witnessed Scott campaign across our state, it has become quite difficult to contain my enthusiasm for his message and his vision. The practical, conservative approach Scott brings to government is what Madison has sorely lacked and what state government badly needs. I couldn’t have been more proud watching him earn our party’s near-unanimous endorsement, creating a center of gravity for the party in the process. He is a thoughtful, decent man with the temperament, experience and skills to be a truly transformative governor.
Therefore, I am suspending my campaign for lieutenant governor in order to focus my efforts to ensure Wisconsin’s future is secure in a conservative victory. It will also allow me to focus on my own business and my service with the Army National Guard, both of which remain high priorities.
To the thousands of people who have supported and encouraged me in this race for lieutenant governor, I am deeply grateful. To my opponents remaining in the race, I appreciate your deep concern for Wisconsin and wish each of you the very best on the campaign trail. To my wife and my family, I love and treasure your friendship and support.
To those who believe that the status quo in state government should continue, count me as the latest footsoldier in Scott Walker’s grassroots army to take Wisconsin back.
Ben, I hope this isn’t the last time we hear from you on the political front.