It is with a heavy heart that I am writing this. There will be no announcement Thursday at 2 pm. Part of being a responsible Vermonter is learning to control one’s pride. Running for Governor has made me a proud man. I have been humbled along the way. The outpouring of love and support has been nothing short of amazing. So it is with a measure of sorrow that I tell you, I will no longer be actively campaigning for Governor of Vermont.

This is a decision, not made lightly. A few days ago, the state of our campaign looked nothing short of promising. It looked like we would achieve some crucial endorsements that would inevitably lead to invitations to the major debates. However, political science is a fickle and complex system. Campaigns rely on the numbers all adding up.

Even though I ran as an Independent, our voters would be mostly Republicans, who were upset with S.55 and Phil Scott. This means we would eat into Scott’s votes to amass our own. I would love to beat Phil and I believe I would have stood a chance, had I entered the debates. That would have almost guaranteed a win for Hallquist, however. Phil and I would compete for the Republican voters while Hallquist secured the Democratic votes. If there is any candidate that absolutely cannot win, it is Hallquist. Hallquist has gone on record, supporting a weapons ban and further unconstitutional regulation of the second amendment.

I will not let my pride endanger the future of freedom in Vermont. I will no longer be campaigning. If you cannot stomach a vote for Scott, my name will still remain on the ballot in November. I will never take away your ability to vote out of principle, for a candidate that supports American Freedom. Please understand my choice to exit with dignity. Phil has said, among family, that he would never sign another gun bill after the fallout from s.55. I don’t know if he’s telling the truth, no one does, but Hallquist isn’t a mystery. Hallquist has confirmed themselves not to be a supporter of the Second Amendment and, in fact, pro-ban.

I return now, to my family. I return to work and day to day life. I am a Vermonter, and damn proud to be one. I am not so prideful and selfish as to jeopardize our state to the chance of Hallquist, however. I thank you all, for and against me, for you have all shaped me along the way. I have learned more about my state and myself along this journey than I ever imagined. I fell deeper in love with my amazing wife, stopped speeding, grew up a lot, became a better father, and made some lifelong friends.

This does not mark the end of my political ventures, merely the beginning. You’ll be seeing me on the trail again in 2020, perhaps not for Governor, but another office where I’ll defend Vermont’s freedoms. 2018 is not my year to create change. I look forward to serving you all in the future. May you all dream big, and never back down from your dreams, I certainly won’t.