Update: Saxman to withdraw from House of Delegates racePolitics

This is an update to a previous post

Saxman, who said this was one of the most difficult decisions of his life, is going on to promote the philosophy of “pragmatic conservatism”, which is founded in what he calls “Truth with a capital ‘T’”.

“Sometimes the most difficult decisions are the ones that are the most clear,” he said.

A devout Catholic, the Virginia delegate has been wanting to work on this vision for awhile and couldn’t see delaying any longer.

According to Saxman, this philosophy is international.

He will continue to advocate on behalf of the non-profit 501(c)4 – School Choice Virginia.

Here’s a nice tribute from Del. Kris Amundson.

And, Richard Bell, Staunton Councilmember, is likely to be named Saxman’s replacement on the ballot by the District GOP.

Here is his letter to constituents:

July 17, 2009

Dear Friends,

I have been honored to serve in the Virginia House of Delegates and represent the great City of Staunton, Highland County and parts of Augusta and Rockingham Counties. It has been a true privilege to work alongside of the citizens of the 20th District for the past eight years. I am humbled by the trust that has been given me by the voters of this district for four terms. I have tried every day to serve you to the best of my ability.

The responsibility of representing you requires, and you deserve, a full-time commitment. As I have recently felt pulled to pursue new opportunities to serve my community and our Commonwealth, I believe the time has come for me to step away from my current elected position. As such, I have decided that I will not seek re-election this November to the Virginia House of Delegates.

I’ve always believed in a part-time legislature and that our Founding Fathers thought it a good idea to leave the State Capitol for a while and recharge. I have had a view of state government from the inside for eight years as an elected representative, and I now have a better understanding of how our government can be improved. However, if you are only looking out, as I have been, you can’t always see clearly what needs to be done on the inside.

I continue to have a strong commitment to public service, and I plan to remain active working to advance commonsense conservative solutions and work on issues about which I am passionate. There are many ways to serve, and I am blessed that several new opportunities to continue this service have presented themselves. I know that now is the time to pursue those projects fully, and I look forward to sharing more details about each of these projects in the near future.

For the past eight years, I have been working diligently on issues that I know will help our families, our Commonwealth and our nation. One of these projects is school choice and ensuring that every child has access to the educational options that will give them the best opportunity for success. It is an issue I have fought for in the legislature, and as many of you know, a year ago I launched School Choice Virginia to further our efforts in this arena. I now look forward to taking a more active role in promoting this issue, which I believe I can better do outside of the confines of the legislature.

We have accomplished so many great things for our district and our Commonwealth by working together – from finally realizing the consolidation of the Virginia School for the Deaf and Blind to Staunton, to keeping the Commonwealth Center for Children & Adolescents open as a vital safety net for some of the most at-risk children in Virginia. From passing important legislation to improve our air quality, to working to make our government more accountable, transparent and competitive – it has been an amazing journey, and I am grateful that I was able to be a part of those efforts.

There are so many people I want to thank who have supported me while serving in the legislature. First and foremost, I am deeply grateful for the love and patience of my wife and my children who have always supported me and stood beside me. I also want to thank the rest of my family, who gave me the love of public service that I still hold today. I also want to express my deepest appreciation to my friends – too many people to list individually – but their support, advice, guidance, and generosity have meant more to me than I can ever express with words.

To my colleagues in the House, Republicans, Democrats and Independents, I want to say a very special thank you for allowing me to serve alongside you. You quite simply are the best people I have ever known. Your integrity, honesty and dedication to this great experiment we call America is what makes Virginia the greatest part of the greatest nation in human history.

I know that America’s and Virginia’s best days are ahead, and I pledge to continue working to promote commonsense policies to get us moving in the right direction. I look forward to the challenges and opportunities ahead, and continuing to work with you to ensure that our future is brighter than ever.

May God bless you and your family.

Sincerely,

Chris Saxman
Delegate, 20th House District