Pretending to Care About National Unity

4 mins read

Dear Friends and Supporters,

A quick campaign update based on a remarkable—and not in a good way—set of comments by my opponent, Chris Stewart. Yesterday, he appeared on a Zoom session sponsored by the conservative Sutherland Institute. I listened in, as did members of our team. You can watch the whole session on the Sutherland Institute Facebook page.

In keeping with his “Election Year Stewart” metamorphosis of late, Stewart said he wanted to switch subjects. Instead of discussing the advertised topic of National Security: America’s Role in the World, he focused on the divisions in our country and the importance of the U.S. maintaining our international alliances. It was as if Stewart believed he could literally remake his record on the spot.

In meandering comments, he left out the well-documented and recurring role that both he and Donald Trump have played in the deep divisions inside our country and around the world.

Also jarring was the claim by Stewart that he is worried about our country committing “national suicide” because of the civil unrest. He went on to criticize the “rewriting of history” and questioned how people could see “the riots and to excuse that as protests when they are not.”

Stewart and committing national suicide

Ironically, Stewart added: “No one knows what is true anymore. Our trust in the media has been destroyed because of their active deception. Our trust in some political organizations has been destroyed because of active deception.”

He also said, without any evidence, that China might have intentionally let COVID-19 spread. This unsubstantiated claim is an echo of the White House and meant to distract from Trump-Stewart and GOP political malfeasance that has led to over 150,000 deaths in the U.S.

The incumbent talked as if Donald Trump and Chris Stewart himself were harmless bystanders rather than what they actually are: the initiators of the deep and repeated deceptions that have led to our current Disunited States of America.

In the chat box, I asked a couple of questions.

Stewart on Sutherland Institute call

The Sutherland moderator unsurprisingly opted not to present them to Stewart and disabled the chat function. One local paper, The Deseret News, did include a reference in their story.

Stewart’s duplicitous performance should remind us all of the importance of November 3rd. Election Day is about helping to bring our country back to a semblance of civility and character.

These initial steps will be hard—but our repair work at home and overseas must begin with a clear vote against the politics of fear, division, and hate.

Kael Weston on Twitter

That is the corrosive politics of Donald Trump and Chris Stewart. We must end it. That is why I am running for office. And that is why Chris Stewart is trying to run away from his record.

Chris Stewart is pretending to care about national unity, whereas that exact message is our campaign logo.

It means a lot to know that we are working together toward accountability and change. Politics at its best can be about bridges, inclusion, and progress. In 2021—post-Trump and post-Stewart—that is the work we can begin to undertake in CD2, in our state and country, and internationally.

Thank you for your support.

Kael Weston

This campaign is only possible through donations. Thank you for your support.

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A native Utahn, Kael Weston served for over a decade in the U.S. State Department, including seven years in Iraq and Afghanistan. During his government career, specific assignments included: U.S. representative on the UN Security Council’s Al Qaeda/Taliban Sanctions Committee in New York; Iraq team, Political Section, U.S. Mission to the United Nations; State Department Political Adviser to a dozen Marine commanding generals, including during and after the biggest battle of the Iraq War (Fallujah, 2004-2007). In this role, he and Marine leaders were responsible for rebuilding the city’s infrastructure, facilitating the return of hundreds of thousands of Fallujans back into the city, establishing a new city council despite numerous assassinations of local politicians, and working closely with Iraqi governors in Ramadi and central Iraqi government representatives in Baghdad. Several nation-wide elections and a constitutional referendum were held across Iraq during this time.

In eastern Afghanistan’s Khost Province, Kael helped prioritize over $50 million dollars in U.S. reconstruction funds and worked to reintegrate former Taliban fighters in coordination with U.S. military leaders and Khost’s Afghan governor. He also met with a group of former Guantanamo Prison detainees and helped lead U.S. government political engagement with Afghan tribal and religious leaders. In Helmand Province, he worked directly with a Marine commanding general during the 2008-2009 U.S. troop surge that doubled Marine forces in the area from just under 11,000 to almost 20,000.

Kael is the author of the book, The Mirror Test (Knopf, 2016) a New York Times Editors’ Choice (NYT Book Review) and Military Times’ Best Book of the Year. He has taught at the college level in Utah and in Quantico, Virginia, at Marine Corps University, as well as leading seminars at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. Kael writes monthly for the Salt Lake Tribune and has contributed to NPR, New York Times, Washington Post, The Hill, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, Daily Beast, and other publications.

For Kael Weston’s multi-year service in Fallujah, Iraq, the State Department awarded him the Secretary of State’s Medal for Heroism.

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