By Sarah Cheedie
As a long time fan and supporter of Senator Santorum, when I was given the opportunity last weekend to join ranks with his Patriot Voices Strike Force Team in Iowa, I was quick to accept the challenge hoping to make an impact in the race to reclaim the senate by getting Joni Ernst elected. Little did I know the impact this weekend would have on me.
You have to remember something about Patriot Voices; it's not your typical PAC. I'm convinced that the heart of their leader is passed on to the volunteers who have caught his vision for a better America.
You don't believe me? Our first team meeting was in the "war room" on Saturday morning before hitting the streets. There we were with volunteers from 12 different states. Most of them drove no less than 8 hours to be part. As we were receiving our assignments for the day, the energy continued to build. The gentleman who was snapping pictures beside me summed it up perfectly when he said, "It's not every day you get to be a part of history being made."
We spent the remainder of the day hitting the pavement in the communities surrounding Waterloo. Iowa is a beautiful place. It's a place where you drive miles between towns, but you find the same spirit exists in each one. A spirit that says, "I'm tired of politics as usual." I believe Iowans know the importance they play in setting the tone for America come every election season and they don't take the job lightly. They are ready for a real change and made that clear at the polls on Nov. 4th.
That evening we unloaded for a rally at the Victory Center in Waterloo to make some calls, talk about the events of the day, and meet up with Senator Rick Santorum. That evening is one I won't soon forget. I had the privilege of meeting the Senator for the first time. He's a man not afraid to get in and work with the "little people". For me, someone who has caught hold of his vision for America, it was like meeting a celebrity. But Senator Santorum acts like anything but a celebrity. In just one night I saw him sit and make calls for the local Republican Party, accept a gift from a volunteer with tears in his eyes as to the generosity of the volunteers in the organization he's privileged to lead and later that evening enjoy a meal while talking football and family. It doesn't get much more American than that!
Did the Patriot Voices Strikeforce team make the difference in the election? Who's to know for sure. The final overall results were certainly in our favor, but I think the real difference is what it did in me. It gives me hope that there are real Americans who believe that the best days in our country may yet still be ahead. It gives me hope that there are leaders who see themselves as everyday Americans striving to make a difference. And it gives me hope that this is just the beginning of what one voice, combined with many can do. Many ask what they can do. They want to know what one person can do to make a difference. The answer to that I learned in Iowa. It's not about doing everything; it's about doing something. As one person combines their efforts with another, and then another....you're no longer one person and you CAN make a difference.