Friday, June 13, 2014

Party First?

Today on one of my Facebook campaign posts, a local Republican posted "Democrats are never the answer."  Apparently she believes that her party affiliation and the party label trumps all other concerns over policy, vision, spending, and all other local issues.

This is just wrong.  And I have noted before that this is wrong.  While I certainly have nothing against party affiliations, and I have mine, there are times that a citizen must break from their party, especially when a particular candidate is just unacceptable.  When your party's candidate goes contrary to your beliefs, do you vote for that candidate anyway?

This has come up many times in Hamilton County.  On the GOP side, many voted for Dan Burton for 3 decades despite a mountain of legitimate concerns over his behavior in Congress.  Voters chose Charlie White for Indiana Secretary of State despite a pending felony investigation, which proved to be a mistake when White was convicted of 6 felonies and removed from office.  (I note those convictions are still on appeal.)  And in 2010, Democrats chose a Tea Party plant as their Congressional candidate over a vastly more-qualified physician, which led me to vote Libertarian for Congress in the fall rather than vote for either the "Democrat", or Dan Burton, whom I considered as corrupt.

I add, not ALL Republicans, nor all Democrats, put party first.  In my own race for Fishers City Council, I have Republican supporters and donors who are troubled by the policies, and especially the spending, of the current administration and Council.  I find myself in the position of advocating policies that are more fiscally responsible than the so-called "fiscal conservatives" on the Fishers Council.

But there are some people who cannot wrap their minds around the concept that it is the ISSUES that matter, not the party label.  And they are of both parties.  And that is sad, and a problem for our community. When it comes to local government, seldom can you identify a "Republican" or "Democrat" position on an issue.  I know I can't.  You just have to make the best and most informed decision you can.