Two days before the Election Day 2020, Governor Mike DeWine delivered an open letter to Ohioans. In it, he called for unity and for the people of the Buckeye State to renew their commitment to “fight the coronavirus.”
“On this Sunday before Election Day, I encourage you to vote if you have not already done so. Exercise and enjoy this sacred right that we, as Americans, hold so dear,” the letter begins.
Even in calmer times when we were less divided, rhetoric in the final throes of top-of-the-ticket campaigns almost always has been hot, animated, and somewhat exaggerated. Today, however, we truly have a nation more divided than any of us can remember. It seems that many on each side genuinely feel our country will fall apart if the other side wins.
Despite this deep divide, there is still so much more that pulls us together than tears us apart. In these rancorous times, we must remember who we are and what we stand for–freedom, liberty, the rule of law, government by the consent of the governed, and opportunity for all, where everyone has a chance to live up to his or her God-given potential and live their American dream.
Today, and for some time to come, we also share a common enemy–one that cares not whether we voted for Donald Trump or Joe Biden; an enemy that is relentless and clearly on the march. This enemy has invaded our nation, stealing nearly 230,000 American lives and at least 5,300 Ohio lives–all on our own soil. Throughout our history, in the face of a shared enemy, we have come together as a people, whether we were in the midst of a war or a national disaster, such as a flood or tornado.
As we confront this new enemy, time is not on our side. We must focus. We must rally together. And, in two days when this election is over, we must–as Ohioans–immediately pull together to fight it.
The stakes could not be higher.
Congress needs to quickly pass a bipartisan Covid-19 relief bill. But each one of us also has an obligation. We all need to protect each other–our families, our friends, our neighbors, and Ohioans we don’t even know. We must do this to keep the virus at bay until we get the vaccine. And when we do, we will need the voices of both parties emphasizing the importance of getting that vaccine out and of people choosing to receive it.
It has been said, “One can find common ground only by moving to higher ground.” Now is the time to move to that higher ground. We must come together as Ohioans have always done. We must put the past behind to move forward.
Ohioans always have been a forward-looking people! It was Ohioans who invented flight and allowed the world to take to the skies–and beyond. And though we are inspired to dream big and have led the way to the heavens, we’ve only done so through a relentless focus on detail, achieved by working together with our feet firmly on the ground.
We are practical. We are problem solvers. We are inventors, laborers, and exceedingly hard workers, with a special kind of grit, resolve, and determination. Show Ohioans a problem–and we will show you a solution!
That’s what Ohioans do. That is who we are. We are people who unite in the toughest of times, because our shared bonds will always be stronger than our differences.
Watch the five minute video of the governor reading the letter here: