ARLINGTON, VA, September 26th, 2012 – Independent Congressional Candidate Jason Howell has officially been endorsed by the Virginia Police Benevolent Association (PBA), a division of Southern States Police Benevolent Association, Inc (SSPBA).  As stated on their website, the primary purpose of the PBA is to “Improve officers pay, benefits and work environment while also improving the law enforcement profession.”

“From the beginning our campaign has been a serious effort to represent the needs of our constituents and those include our first responders,” said candidate Howell.  “This endorsement, over traditional party candidates, further validates our efforts and foreshadows the history we will make in November.” 

ABOUT SSPBA

The Southern States Police Benevolent Association, Inc. is composed of more than 27,000 law enforcement officers employed by federal, state, county and municipal governments. This professional association, funded by membership dues and citizen contributions, provides legal, disciplinary and other representation to officers who are members. The Southern States Police Benevolent Association is “The Voice of Law Enforcement Officers.”

ABOUT JASON HOWELL

Jason Howell is an Independent candidate for U.S.Congress. He has lived in Northern Virginia for 25 years, worked in mostly accounting and finance for nearly 20 years and has spent 0 years prior as a politician. He is running to represent Virginia’s 8th Congressional district as a fiscally responsible, socially reasonable and personally relatable elected official. Virginia’s 8th District covers all of Arlington County, City of Alexandria, City of Falls Church, Fort Belvoir, Lorton and parts of Fairfax County.  For more, and to contact Jason, see www.VoteJasonHowell.com

 

It’s been about a year now since I made the decision, with the blessing of my lovely wife, to run for United States Congress as an Independent.  During that time we have learned a lot, worked a lot and met thousands of people.  Last June I turned in over 1,800 of our neighbor’s signatures who all agreed that I deserved the opportunity to earn your support.  Still, with 727,000 people who live in our Congressional district, about 400,000 of whom are eligible to vote, there’s likelihood that you and I have never laid eyes on each other.  When I received the invitation to blog for Patch, I saw it as another opportunity to meet you.  This blog invites you into my campaign, my mission and my story.  Welcome.

Looking back, August of 2011 was significant for me and our country.  My 37thbirthday was in August; which oddly meant that I

Meeting and greeting at the Columbia Pike Blues Festival

caught up in age with my older sister who had passed 5 years prior.  I had recently celebrated my first wedding anniversary; which I hear is a good sign for the likely survival of my marriage.  I also received final word that my trademark application for the phrase “Patriotic Development” had been approved.   It’s a neat thing to trademark a phrase.  The process took about 7 months and in my mind its approval confirmed the new path I had recently chosen; that of being a writer and speaker after many years of working in the accounting and finance industry.  Just over 2 years prior my father had passed away and yes, I do think there was a correlation with him losing my sister, his first born. Having lived with them both during their final years, I was struck by the brevity of life, the finality of death and the recognition that we are capable of much but we must act sooner rather than later.

In August I began writing and rewriting a book on the idea of taking action in your life for the sake of causes greater than yourself.  As a writer I had the luxury of taking a break to watch C-SPAN and observe our elected officials work on causes greater than themselves.  They weren’t too good at it.  Because of their inability to achieve compromise on fiscal policy, in August of 2011 Standard and Poor’s downgraded our U.S. debt from AAA to AA+.  This was the first time in United States history that our debt had been downgraded and it took a bite out of our leadership status in the world.  We still lead, but our image took a body blow in the summer of 2011.  The bickering and posturing of our politicians does not represent the best of us.  We are a better people than partisan politicians depict us to be.  “We the people” can do better.

What I saw in August of 2011 was what a lot of people saw – a need to get past the partisanship and focus on citizenship.  This was and is an immediate need.   Writing a book was my initial way of getting involved but with my wife’s blessing, I took the opportunity that few have –to be a candidate.   It is our generation’s turn in history to get involved personally in our national politics.  Those who can run for office should and those who can participate in other ways should also make that choice.  This is our time.

In our 8th Congressional district we have someone who has served passionately for many years but like many of his peers, has chosen a partisan path that has painted him into a corner.  I am speaking of Jim Moran.  Once you go partisan with passion, it’s difficult to “cross the aisle,” do it for 21 years in Congress and it’s nearly impossible.   I am applying to be your non-partisan representative.  I don’t have a political dog in the fight; I have a burning desire to pass laws that secure our success as a nation.  This 112th Congress passed fewer laws than the “do-nothing Congress” of 1948.  We can do better.

For those of you with whom I have not had the opportunity to engage, the next 60 days will be important steps to earning your trust:

  • You will want to know what I stand for and why
  • You will want to know how specifically I compare and contrast with our current representative
  • You will want to know how I’ll be any different, how a Freshman Congressman can possibly impact our politics, and whether you can trust me with your family’s future

Quite simply, you will want to know whether I “get” how serious a responsibility it is to be your United States representative from Virginia.   I understand.  We have a lot to talk about and just enough time to do it.   For starters, and to learn more about the issues I am focused on, see my website (www.VoteJasonHowell.com) and Facebook Page (www.Facebook.com/VoteJasonHowell).

ABOUT JASON HOWELL

Jason Howell is an Independent candidate for U.S.Congress. He has lived in Northern Virginia for 25 years, worked in mostly accounting and finance for nearly 20 years and has spent 0 years prior as a politician. He is running to represent Virginia’s 8th Congressional district as a fiscally responsible, socially reasonable and personally relatable elected official. Virginia’s 8th District covers all of Arlington County, City of Alexandria, City of Falls Church, Fort Belvoir, Lorton and parts of Fairfax County.  For more, and to contact Jason, see www.VoteJasonHowell.com


 

The Kauffman Foundation is the largest foundation devoted to entrepreneurship in the world.  There organization is a non-partisan source for good ideas.  Senior scholar Brink Lindsey has researched some reasons behind today’s economic disparity and has some ideas to improve the situation for future generations.  This is a video preview of his new book:

 

“Congress-Man” Live at IOTA

ARLINGTON, VA, August 1st, 2012 – Independent Congressional Candidate will perform an alternative version to Elton Jon’s “Rocket Man” (“Congress-Man”)tonight at Iota Club and Cafe’s open-mic night. Billed as an alternative to the typical town-hall meeting, Howell envisions a relaxed environment where people who are not necessarily engaged in politics will have an opportunity to meet a congressional candidate.

“My roots in the community begin with live, local music in the early 1990′s. Music is independent of party and musicians can be the philosophers of our time. The message I am sending through this event is: I’m approachable, relatable and interested in hearing from all voices in the community. Not everyone is interested in politics but Politicians are elected to represent all people. This is one way to reach those who are typically ignored,” says Howell.

Iota’s open-mic begins at 7:30 pm. Howell expects to take the stage around 8 pm.

ABOUT JASON HOWELL

Jason Howell is an Independent candidate for Congress. He has lived in Northern Virginia for 25 years, worked in mostly accounting and finance for nearly 20 years and has spent 0 years as a politician. He is running to represent Virginia’s 8th Congressional district as a fiscally responsible and socially reasonable elected official. Virginia’s 8th District covers all of Arlington County, City of Alexandria, City of Falls Church, Fort Belvoir, Lorton and parts of Fairfax County. For more, and to contact Jason, see www.VoteJasonHowell.com

 

Americana inspired cake - home made - with love for this Independent. Thanks Amber!

One man of courage makes a majority.”Andrew Jackson, 7th  President of the United States

President Jackson, born in 1767, was a little young around the time of our American Revolution.  Had he been older he may have used that quote to describe our 1st U.S. President, George Washington.

Thanks to General Washington and our history of brave U.S. soldiers, we actually have an Independence to celebrate.  We are all Americans first.  Today and on November 6th, we can all be “George Washingtons.”

GEORGE WASHINGTON

George Washington, can be called many things:

  • Father of our nation
  • Our first Commander-in-Chief and President (in that order)
  • Namesake of our U.S. Capital and most famous monument
  • Virginian
  • Independent

Yes George Washington, father of our nation, was once an Independent from Virginia facing overwhelming odds.  Courage, especially then, was required.  Had Washington failed it would have meant certain death and perhaps more importantly, death of the ideals that made this land a country:  love, liberty and leadership.  236 years later we are still a country founded upon those ideals but as he warned in his farewell address, we must restrain the powers of political party:

“The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge, natural to party dissension, which in different ages and countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders and miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty.

Without looking forward to an extremity of this kind, (which nevertheless ought not to be entirely out of sight,) the common and continual mischiefs of the spirit of party are sufficient to make it the interest and duty of a wise people to discourage and restrain it.”

- George Washington, 1st President of the United States (1796, Farewell Address)

No one even speaks like that anymore.  What Washington and others of that day fought for was not party, but purpose.  Our generation also has that sense of purpose because the ideals of our country are always being challenged.  Sometimes the challenge comes from across the ocean, sometimes on land from within our borders and sometimes from ourselves.  Today our challenge must come from within.  What will we do to support the purpose of our country?

WE’RE THE ONLY “AMERICA”

Materials from USCIS to help legal residents become U.S. Citizens

June 12th of this year was significant for our campaign.  It was the day I dropped off over 1,800 signatures to qualify for Virginia’s ballot as an Independent.  Later that evening I went to Sherwood Library in Alexandria to attend Citizenship 1o1:  Becoming a U.S. Citizen.  The event was sponsored by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services arm of the Department of Homeland Security.  Amongst the room full of immigrants who would choose to become American, were materials of all sorts to guide them along their paths.  Flash cards, applications, practice tests and even flags; all set forth to help inspire and educate people willing to work for U.S. citizenship.  That my citizenship was either fate or a fortunate accident of birth was clear that day.  I did not have to take a test, prove my fluency in English or “..Show a willingness to defend the U.S. Constitution and the laws of the United States.”  I just had to be born.

There are so many people, so willing, to go through great lengths to become a member of our citizen fellowship.  We have proven for 236 years that our struggle for Independence was worth it.  What we have left to prove is our willingness to continue that struggle.

RUNNING AS AN INDEPENDENT

As is often the case every four years, we are at crossroads in American history.  Our country’s biggest challenge among many, is the slow growth of our economy.  The source of that and other challenges is very clear:  persistent, partisan, politics.  We have trained our current and would be politicians to rely on the tribes and factions that George Washington warned us about.  We now are the people that must give them courage to turn away from partisanship and follow their hearts back to citizenship.

On November 6th, you will have the opportunity to elect perhaps the only Independent into the U.S. House of Representatives.  On that day, we will carve our initials into the wall of history. We will rally our country and her politicians to focus on the love, liberty and leadership of the United States.  Through the courage and the conviction of the actions you take from today through that day, we will have become rightful heirs to the “independence” we are once again celebrating.

Happy 4th fellow “George Washingtons.”  And God Bless the United States of America.

 

 

ABOUT JASON HOWELL

Jason Howell is an Independent candidate for Congress. He has lived in Northern Virginia for 25 years, worked in mostly accounting and finance for nearly 20 years and has spent 0 years as a politician. He is running to represent Virginia’s 8th Congressional district as a fiscally responsible and socially reasonable elected official. Virginia’s 8th District covers all of Arlington County, City of Alexandria, City of Falls Church, Fort Belvoir, Lorton and parts of Fairfax County.  For more, and to contact Jason, see www.VoteJasonHowell.com

 


 

In honor of this past Memorial Day, I choose to recognize love.

As a country, Memorial Day is recognized similarly every  year but to every one of us, it always means something different.  Our lives progress, our experiences change and who we memorialize unfortunately, increases.

Everyone who has lost someone is touched by Memorial Day.  My father never served in the military but I remembered him this past Memorial day.  I remembered my late, eldest sister too.  My brother Justin memorialized his friend and fellow Marine; “Colin” died while serving alongside him in Operation Iraqi Freedom.  I take note that another brother of mine just joined the U.S. Army officially last week.  During this time I remember Taryn Davis who in 2007 started the American Widow Project (AWP): unifying the new generation of military widows.  Taryn is a remarkable person who I had the opportunity to share a few emails with last year.  For many people the wars are tangible parts of their lives with unending consequences.  For too many of us, wars are abstract operations handled by “other people.”

This video from AWP helps to make the family experience of love and war very real:

If stories like these inspire you to action, see more on AWP’s website under Widow Blogs.  The organization could use our support.

This year I had an opportunity to interact personally with members of Rolling Thunder.  This was Rolling Thunder XXV, the 25th

Me and Mike from Rolling Thunder Maryland Chapter 1

Anniversary.  It was an honor to meet some of these folks just 2 Sunday’s ago.  As I mentioned in a previous post, I took a 6 a.m opportunity to help wash the Vietnam War Memorial wall.  Regular washings are done this early so they can finish – and the slippery pavement below can dry – well before tourists arrive on the grounds.  The wall hosts over 58,000 names of Vietnam Veterans including over 1,000 of MIAs/POWs; just looking at “the wall” is a moving experience.  Taking a few moments to share in washing it is even more so.  To search for a name or any other questions, click on this link.

I probably wouldn’t have been invited by my friend Mike (pictured) had he not known I was running for office this year.  Publicizing my desire to serve our country in this way has given others license to share their patriotism with me. Mike’s outreach and that of so many others has been an inspiring part of the campaign process.  Perhaps no one however, has been as inspiring as my lovely wife Jennifer.

MY LOVELY WIFE JENNIFER

Falls Church Mayor Nader Baroukh, wife Bernadette (left), Jennifer and me

We are about halfway through a year that has already changed the trajectory of our lives together.  From the decision to run for public office, through almost every signature gathering stop and especially on Memorial Day 2012, Jennifer has been there.  We spent 12 heated  (90 degree) hours within 100 feet of our tent at the 31st Annual City of Falls Church Memorial Day Parade.  Our friend Ken risked some spousal abuse from his waiting wife for the 5 or 6 hours he joined us (thanks again Ken).  Another friend Sarah, battled a parking fiasco to help our campaign later in the afternoon.  Still though,  my lovely wife Jennifer won my vote for most supportive person in the whole wide world.

If I needed a reminder for what this campaign was about, I merely had to look over at Jennifer.  It was easy to observe her positive attitude, her easy smile and her persistent partnership.  What’s been missing from our politics has been honor, respect, loyalty and service to something greater than ourselves.  What’s been missing in the United States Congress is a sense of community, striving together for a common cause, in selfless partnership.  Our military families get that concept clearly.  I am lucky because I get to see examples of “how it’s done” just by admiring my wife Jennifer on a daily basis.  Reagan had Nancy, in his own way Bill has Hillary, Obama has Michelle and I too have the admirable support of my wife Jennifer.  Together we are making the seemingly impossible, merely improbable and soon the likely.

To all of those who have loved, lost and served, with you I recognize that LOVE MATTERS.

ABOUT JASON HOWELL

Jason Howell is an Independent candidate for Congress. He has lived in Northern Virginia for 25 years, worked in mostly accounting and finance for nearly 20 years and has spent 0 years as a politician. He is running to represent Virginia’s 8th Congressional district as a fiscally responsible and socially reasonable elected official. Virginia’s 8th District covers all of Arlington County, City of Alexandria, City of Falls Church, Fort Belvoir, Lorton and parts of Fairfax County.
For more, and to contact Jason, see www.VoteJasonHowell.com

 


 

Celebrating success with my lovely wife Jennifer (left) and our friends Sarah and Chris

Folks, we are getting much closer to our goal of replacing an incumbent with an Independent.

Over the past months we have enriched our campaign by engaging people throughout Arlington, Alexandria, Falls Church, McLean and even Lorton!  From the very beginning we’ve spoken to all issues that affect Virginia’s 8th Congressional District.  Ours is a campaign focused on listening, building relationships and creating action items to implement.

SO…WHERE HAVE WE BEEN?

April was a fascinating month.  A-SPAN (Arlington Street People’s Assistance Network) has been addressing the needs of Arlington’s homeless population for over 20 years. For one night, Restaurant 3 was gracious enough to host A-SPAN and guest bar tenders who poured all kinds of appealing drinks.  15% of the proceeds for the night went directly to A-SPAN causes.  Here in Arlington, many of our homeless are personally identified by name and that recognition can help many homeless transition from their current situation.

A-SPAN Development Director Jan-Michael Sacharko and me.

A-SPAN provides:

  • Case Management
  • Employment Counseling
  • Housing
  • Shelter
  • Food!

These are the kind of services that provide our homeless a hand “up” rather than just a hand out.  These services truly help.

Later that night, I joined Falls Church residents at the Falls Church City Hall for a 7 person city council candidates forum.  The event was sponsored by the League of Women Voters Falls Church (LWVFC) and the Falls Church Village Preservation and Improvement Society (VPIS).  7 candidates competed for 3 seats on the council.  This was a great opportunity to hear contrasting visions for the future of our “Little City.”

At Edu-Futuro, Eneida Alcalde leads a volunteer staff, board and volunteers while helping empower Latino families through educational programs for their children.  On April 20 I was invited to judge Edu-Futuro’s inaugural talent show for children.   This was a tough competition but at least I wasn’t the only one “judging.”

Talent competitors for Edu-Futuro's inaugural competition

That night all of the competitors were winners.  Each parent of a competitor added another reason to feel positively about the future of their kid.  They were all talented, entirely too focused and their abilities made it hard on all of us judges.

Towards the end of April the volunteers and I completed our final Crystal City 5K and just in time.  Never in my adulthood had I competed in a timed race and after three 5Ks and many more in “training,” my knees had just about enough.

In May, some of the best people I met were folks involved in their communities; especially through civic associations.  There are many people who serve privately; whether it’s with their neighbors, their friends or just in their homes.  These are the folks who do not seek fame but merely progress for their friends and loved ones.  In May we had opportunities to interact directly with folks from the Claremont, Nauck and Rosslyn neighborhoods in Arlington.

The 35th Anniversary of "raising the flag" at the Old Dominion Boat Club

In addition to visiting communities in Arlington, my wife and I accepted an invitation to attend the 35th anniversary of the Old Dominion Boat Club flag raising ceremony in Alexandria.  Their current Commodore shares my last name but after telling a few tall tales, we admitted there was no relation.  The Old Dominion Boat Club   boasts a history that goes back to 1880.  Their members are affable, yet humble folks who do more for the Alexandria community than they let on.  My wife and I were welcomed with the utmost grace and I always look forward to bumping into these folks whenever I’m in Alexandria.

Also in May, our campaign hosted it’s first fundraiser/celebration of our donors and volunteers.  As an Independent, we are managing an improbable victory.  I have recognized that from the very beginning.  With the help of family, old friends and new friends we are making victory possible.

OUR  MISSION

Click here for more photos of washing the Vietnam War Memorial with Rolling Thunder (an honor).

Some of our most devoted supporters have asked, “Well, what if the election doesn’t go the way you expected?  What will you do?”  The answer:  we will press on with the mission.  Before I made any attempt to run for office, I shared an intimate conversation with my wife about goals for our lives; including the family we are trying to build and the legacy we want to leave.  In less than 6 months the verdict will come in for this election.  I owe it to all of my supporters, most especially my wife, to do everything ethically possible to win.

We can win and will win Virginia’s 8th Congressional District seat if we continue to engage the concerns of voters (our neighbors).

No matter what happens, we have permanently joined the fight for love, liberty and leadership -the ideals that America stood for before ever becoming a country.  We will fight for these ideals as generations have before us.  We will not quietly let our country drift into second place.  America is too important to the world and too important to me.

Our mission has little do with the Republican or Democrat parties.  In May I attended a Fairfax County Democratic Committee meeting, an Alexandria Tea Party gathering and a Rolling Thunder Vietnam War Memorial washing.  My wife and I watched Miss Gay Arlington get crowned live at Freddie’s Beach Bar and Restaurant.  Within all of these communities and groups I have found people who love their country and are doing what they can to contribute positively to progress.  As an Independent I willingly join forces with all Americans who enrich our communities and are restoring our nation’s standing in the world.

Will you join us? 

 

ABOUT JASON HOWELL

Jason Howell is an Independent candidate for Congress.  He has lived in Northern Virginia for 25 years, worked in private industry for 20 years and has spent 0 years as a politician.  He is running to represent Virginia’s 8th Congressional district as a fiscally responsible and socially reasonable elected official.  Virginia’s 8th District covers all of Arlington County, City of Alexandria, City of Falls Church, Fort Belvoir, Lorton and parts of Mclean. For more, see www.VoteJasonHowell.com

 


 
  1. I am neither Republican or Democrat.  This frees me to represent you, rather than a party platform.
  2. I am running for office to make a difference, not a career.   I believe in congressional term limits.
  3. My career background is 20 years in private industry versus 21 years in congressional politics.
  4. My life in Northern Virginia has given me a sobering yet positive perspective.  See my story here.

You may have a question with an answer not represented here.   Contact me by e-mail so I can respond to you directly.  My e-mail address is Jason@VoteJasonHowell.com

 

The economy.  For the past few years I have been running a small business as a writer and speaker.  I wrote my first book, AMERICA:  Still the Land of Opportunity, Always a Home for the Brave in 2009 and was working on my second when the “debt crisis” captured my attention.  All of the work we do as businesspeople can be destroyed by economic policy.

Taxes, deficits, traffic, regulation, (lack of) energy policy, immigration policy all affect our business and personal lives.  If the economy of the United States of America is destroyed, almost nothing else we do individually will matter.

We can do better.  Our federal government can be the change we want to see in our country.  Most of our challenges as a country began with this generation:  the past 30 or 40 years.  These challenges became clearly apparent in the past 10 years.  21st century problems need 21st century solutions.  That’s the choice in this election: a 21 year incumbent v.s. 21st century solutions.

 

There are zero Independents in the United States House of Representatives.  Only being represented by Republicans and Democrats is a big reason why we have partisan gridlock.  Partisanship is fully represented in Congress, independence, and your voice, is not.  I plan to take votes away from both the Republican challenger and the Democratic incumbent in this election; 200,000 votes in fact.

Gerrymandering ensures that individual parties and individual politicians maintain their power.  Another Democrat or Republican can do little to influence the trajectory of our elections or even our country.  Sending an Independent to the Congress will send a message to the career politicians:  “We the people..” are still in charge.