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SEL president encourages a return to civility in politics at candidate forum

Dr. Ed Schweitzer was invited to provide remarks at the Moscow Chamber of Commerce’s Forum with Idaho's Fifth Legislative District Candidates on Thursday, October 1. As this event was virtual, Dr. Schweitzer shared his remark via video.

In his welcome, Schweitzer reminded the candidates and viewers of the mission of Chambers of Commerce, the importance of protecting free enterprise, and encouraged a return to civil discourse in politics. 

His message transcends the Forum audience and is relevant and timely for our country. Here is the transcript of his remarks:

It is my pleasure to welcome you to the Moscow Chamber of Commerce Idaho District 5 Candidate Forum. I’m grateful the Moscow Chamber is hosting tonight’s forum. Thank you!

Our Chambers of Commerce honor, share, and protect our nation’s deep-rooted spirit of free enterprise. In fact, the motto of the US Chamber of Commerce IS the Spirit of Free Enterprise.

Our roots of Free Enterprise are deep…and grounded in our Declaration of Independence from Great Britain.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, 
that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

That, to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

That, whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to affect their safety and happiness."

How brilliant and unique the American experiment is…founded on the fundamental that we the people are born with unalienable rights of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Only in our country does it all begin with We the People.  Government then follows from that…securing our unalienable rights…endowed by our Creator; not permitted by government.  We are the horse.  Government is the cart.

These days, We the People are eager to return civility and grace to politics. Tuesday night’s presidential debate only seemed to fuel our hunger for grace and civility…for professionalism, leadership, respect. Respect of each other.  Respect of our country.

May We the People, right here, tonight, brought together by the Moscow Chamber of Commerce, be a shining light in the west, radiating political grace and civility to our entire nation. May I personally thank all our candidates for running for office. May I also thank your families for supporting you! No matter your political party, we applaud YOUR courage, strength, perseverance, and presence of mind for wanting to run for office in order to serve “We the People.” 

Thank you all for being here this evening, in person, and through the magic of technology. 

Edmund O. Schweitzer III