“As Virginians and Americans, we have so much to celebrate and be thankful for on this Independence Day. Our heritage as a nation began right here on the soil of the Commonwealth of Virginia.
“The wisdom of Thomas Jefferson gave us the Declaration of Independence, and defined for America the founding principles of our nation and the inalienable rights of all human beings. Those principles of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are as true today as they were 235 years ago.
“As we reflect on the enduring inspiration of our Founding Fathers, we remember their struggle to be free and the promise that it holds. It is our responsibility as Americans to ensure that our nation continues to be a beacon of freedom for generations to come.
“Thank you to our brave troops fighting overseas to preserve the freedoms and opportunities that we cherish here at home. Stand strong for freedom. God bless America.”