Promise in the darkness

Dear Friend--

It is with mixed emotions that I write to you today. I am proud to have been elected by my neighbors in District 60B as their new representative to the Minnesota House. 

A heartfelt thank you to my family, friends, my campaign team, the 400+ volunteers and more than 900 donors, and all of the voters who made this win possible.

You are Minnesota at its finest. You represent what we, as Americans, should strive to be: united in our diversity.

I am also sick with worry as a result of the overall outcome of this election and the deep divide within our nation.

There is a part of me that wants to go inside my house, close the curtains and lock the door, so I can keep my family safe. But it is because of my three children that I cannot withdraw. I am sad. I am angry. I am grieving. And I will be all of these things for many days to come. But I will also continue to get up every morning and work for justice because that is what WE must do for the sake of all our children and our future.

Somehow, we must confront the racism, xenophobia, misogyny, and homophobia that plagues this country. There are no easy answers, but we must find ways to try to end this cycle of hate. 

As my friend Jason Sole posted on Facebook this morning: "I'm thinking about all of you beautiful people who will continue to rise up."

And my friend Sen. Scott Dibble: "Our movement for authentic security, opportunity, freedom, and justice will be led by a mighty coalition of those who refuse to be pushed to the margins. We will offer real solutions for real people's lives. Kindness, grace and generosity will be our hallmark and will prevail."

And my friend Carla Kjellberg: "We have been here before. We must continue to believe that there is promise in the darkness."

As I pledged last night in my acceptance speech, I will never give up fighting for a democracy that works for everyone. I will never give up fighting for you.

But I need you. And we need each other. We must find ways to move forward together.

Love and solidarity,


Ilhan