February 17, 1999
(Columbia) - House Speaker David H. Wilkins, joined by more than 50 House members, sent a letter today to George W. Bush, encouraging the Texas Governor to seek the Republican Presidential nomination in 2000.
"Our nation is yearning for a conservative leader who represents the values of most American families," Wilkins wrote. "Your proven record of success and ability to reach out to many different groups is desperately needed as we prepare to embrace a new century."
Wilkins letter was co-signed by 59 other South Carolina Republican House members who have examined the Governor's record in Texas and have determined that Bush is the best candidate to lead our country into the next century.
The South Carolina lawmakers cite Bush's pro-education reforms, including his embrace of charter schools and his commitment to limited government, personal responsibility and strong families, as some of the reasons why they support Bush, who is currently serving his second term as Texas Governor.
"George W. Bush best represents the ideals and goals of South Carolina families," Wilkins said. "He understands that government should work for the people and not lord over them. That's why Texans are enjoying a $1 billion school property tax cut funded by savings from state government at the same time Texas lawmakers are implementing historic reforms to improve public schools."
Wilkins is planning to meet with Governor Bush in Texas early next month where the two will discuss the Governor's possible presidential bid. If Governor Bush does decide to seek the Republican nomination, Speaker Wilkins, along with other prominent state lawmakers, has offered to play a leadership role in his South Carolina campaign.
George W. Bush is the 46th Governor of the State of Texas. He and his wife Laura have teenage twin daughters.
Dear Governor Bush:
It is with great enthusiasm that we write you to encourage you to seek the Presidency of the United States.
Our nation is yearning for a conservative leader who represents the values of most American families. Your proven record of success and ability to reach out to many different groups is desperately needed as we prepare to embrace a new century.
South Carolina is of critical importance in the presidential primaries and you have many devoted followers here. We stand united in our conviction that you are the best candidate. Therefore, we, the undersigned members of the South Carolina House of Representatives, wholeheartedly encourage you to run for the office of President of the United States of America.
David H. Wilkins
[and signatures of 57 other South Carolina state representatives]