“I’m really excited. We had a great election — 16 out of 16 won this year,” said Norwalk Mayor Rob Duncan.
“That’s pretty impressive; but we still have a lot of work to do. I want to encourage you. There’s a scripture that talks about how a house divided against itself cannot stand. One of the joys of being Republican, in my opinion, is not that we agree on everything, but that we come and have hearty debate and we can agree to disagree, but at the end of the day, when it’s all said and done, we come back together. It’s important to remember that right now because I’m to the point that I cannot stand to turn on the news. I don’t care if it’s Fox or anything else I can’t stand to turn it on right now. It’s just hard to do.
“I want to encourage you that you don’t get so caught up in debate that you’re not doing the important things. That’s what we have a command Biblically to do — pray for our leaders. It’s easy to talk about them, but it really takes an effort to pray for them.
“As the debates go on on local level, on a national level, we can have this hearty debate, but at the end of the day we need to come together and stand together on our Republican principles,” Duncan added.
Keynote speaker and special guest 6th District Court of Appeals Judge Christine Mayle agreed.
“It’s my firm belief that judges should uphold the Ohio and United State constitution,” she said. “If one persons’ right are in jeopardy, they are all in jeopardy and we have the constitution to make sure those rights are protected as the supreme law of the land.”
She encouraged all in attendance to consider their principles their truest compass.
“Abraham could easily have compromised his principles to get some sort of a ceasefire in the Civil War,” she said. “But to compromise his principles would have been to compromise his person and to compromise the union irrevocably. Because Lincoln was wiling to take a risk and articulate his views at Gettysburg, through a very short speech. ... He has gone down in history as one of the greatest presidents. No one can become great by remaining silent or compromising his principles in the face of adversity.”