Bob Stefanowski won the Republican nomination for governor in last week’s primary. Below is an excerpt of his victory address, as shared by his campaign.

When I first thought about running for office I met with a lot of people —  a lot of people who had insights, knowledge into the process of politics and government. But nothing they said could have prepared me for what my family and I just experienced and will experience in the weeks and months ahead. And, that’s a good thing, because I learned a lot.  

I learned that despite the attacks from the press, the trolls on the internet, the attack ads and all those who want to put their spin on what we want to do, you have to stick to your core beliefs, to your values.

I learned that to save our state, we have to defend the core Republican values of smaller government with less interference in our lives, lower taxes, greater personal responsibility, and high moral and ethical standards.

I learned a lot about this great state and its people. The diversity of our 169 cities and towns. Connecticut’s rich history and legacy. And our people’s sincere hopes to bring Connecticut back to the opportunity and greatness that it used to have.

I learned that eight years of Dan Malloy and the special interests that he is beholden to have damaged our unalienable right to the pursuit of happiness. We can’t continue to kick the can down the road. That we need to wipe the slate clean with a fresh approach, ambitious goals and the tenacity to achieve them. That we simply can’t afford a continuation of the horrible economic policies under a Ned Lamont administration.

I have a plan and focus — a message that puts Connecticut’s working families first, not the special interests in Hartford, A plan that will reduce your taxes with a focus on putting more people back to work. A plan to eliminate the state income tax over 8 years. A plan that will reduce the waste in Hartford, re-prioritize how government is run and, yes, bring some common-sense business practices into the public sector. A plan to take power away from career politicians and give it back to the people.

For the first time in decades, Connecticut will actually have a real CEO – whose primary focus will be putting people back to work - and creating a competitive environment where working families can afford to stay here - and our parents and grandparents can afford to retire here.

And we will have a terrific COO in Lieutenant Governor Joe Markley. I am proud to have you as my running mate Joe. You ran a campaign with dignity and grace. We will make a terrific team.  Your knowledge of government and ability to work with the legislature will be invaluable to moving our growth agenda forward. Someday you, I, and all of us here are going to look back on this very night with pride – as we begin the process to rebuild Connecticut to its former glory.

We need to have real change that our children and grandchildren can continue to live and work in CT for generations.

The people of Connecticut need a future, not merely a past.

The people of Connecticut, need to make history, not repeat it.

That’s what our campaign is about – real change vs. the failed status quo, a real future vs. no future and real hope vs. no hope.

Tonight I am asking every Connecticut taxpayer and every working man and woman in Connecticut to join us. Two-hundred and forty-two years ago the men and women of Connecticut joined a revolution for freedom that gave birth to a new nation that changed the world. Tonight I ask you, the working taxpaying men and women of CT to join a new revolution for freedom from Hartford’s big government spending and taxes.  The real battle for freedom has begun for change, for hope and for our future. Thank you for a big win tonight. Next step is to win in November.