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"Boots on the Ground" concludes in Rolla
February 19, 2010 (Rolla, MO) - For 28 days, US House of Representatives candidate Tommy Sowers spent one day and one night living, working, and listening in each of the 28 counties of the 8th Congressional District. Tommy, along with his dog Chuck, traveled over 3100 miles in his pickup truck, more than the distance from New York to Los Angeles. He returned home to Phelps County on Tuesday for the final day of his "Boots on the Ground" project.
In every county, Tommy spent the day discussing issues and learning peoples' concerns in the coffee shops, courthouses, workplaces and homes of southeastern Missouri. Sowers also worked side-by-side with residents on many days of Boots on the Ground. His jobs varied from teaching high school in Perry County, to working on a road crew in Iron County, to milking cows in Texas County. Tommy also sat down and discussed his candidacy with reporters all throughout the district, appearing on numerous radio shows and in many local papers.
"We received a very warm welcome," said Sowers. "People are tired of typical politicians that show up for a photo op once a year and then leave. This is the 'show me' part of the 'Show Me State'. Boots on the Ground gave the voters a chance to kick the tires. Some kicked harder than others."
Tommy Sowers is challenging Representative Jo Ann Emerson for her seat in the United States Congress.
"I found a strong anti-incumbent sentiment during Boots on the Ground. This is a large, diverse district but the concerns about jobs and their kids moving away were constant. People simply don't trust Washington anymore, and that goes for both parties. They clearly want a true ambassador for this district who will work hard for people and will not take their votes for granted," continued Sowers, "It was an honor to look people in their eyes and ask them for their vote."
Boots on the Ground also featured an innovative web platform (www.sowersforcongress.com/boots), where anyone could follow Tommy's journey throughout the district, with videos, pictures and updates from the road. Tommy also makes frequent use of Twitter and Facebook, giving followers a real-time perspective on what it is like to run for Congress from the candidate himself.
Campaign manager Jonathan Feifs concluded, "Boots on the Ground was a mixture of new technology and old school politics. We used the internet to give supporters a way to follow him hour-by-hour, to clearly show all it takes to take on a DC native and insider."