Two years ago, the pundits were surprised by the number of voters who overwhelmingly chose conservative candidates in the midterm elections. In four weeks, we get another chance to correct the direction of our country. This election is not just about minor differences in leadership but rather a crucial crossroads as to how we decide to move forward. On one hand, we have a current leader who truly believes that Government is best in solving all problems. In his mind, a larger Government can provide more to the general public and the cost can be placed on those who succeed. This populist agenda has been tried in Europe over the last couple of decades with mixed results but mostly to the detriment of the middle class. On the other hand, we have a candidate who truly believes that by limiting Government and allowing the free market to solve problems, a much stronger long term solution can be had. I am obviously in the same mind as the second candidate. I have witnessed how the free market will solve problems. I have had the fortune of bringing an idea to the marketplace and receiving the rewards for taking risks. Ten years ago, I saw a need for expert advice in the health insurance marketplace. Many agents had forgone health insurance knowledge because of the complexity and work load that came with it. OCI was formed to assist agents and brokers in solving this gap and at the same time, provide carriers a cost effective way to deliver products to these agents and brokers. An idea became a reality and today, twenty six people are employed by OCI. In addition, over 2000 agents have a resource to help them run their businesses. The private market found a solution to a problem.

This election will prove to be a deciding point not only to our industry but to our country. Those who contribute barley outnumber the ones who take. When you look at how our country votes, the urban areas in the east and west have a profound effect on the outcome. The Midwest, where most people believe in contributing to society, is usually voting for less Government and more self reliance. Why is that you may ask? It is simply that the Midwestern work ethic is that you get up, work hard, and take care of your needs and those around you. It is most likely an inherited trait because our ancestors settled in these areas so they could provide for themselves and their families.

I encourage you over the next four weeks to be vocal. If you truly believe that Government needs to be limited, that free enterprise needs to be encouraged, and that you already pay more than your fair share, get out and get involved. Talk to your clients, neighbors, family and anyone else you come across. Be patriotic by protecting your beliefs. A patriot is defined as โ€œnoun โ€“ one who loves and defends his or her countryโ€. Get others to vote and encourage them to get involved. Two years ago we made a difference in the outcome of the election. This election is even more important to the future of our country. REMEMBER IN NOVEMBER!!