We have many different political ideologies when it comes to charting an individual on the political spectrum. I consider myself to be in center. I lean right or left, and up or down on some issues. I have Communitarian views, Liberal views, Libertarian views, and Conservative views. It all depends on the issue. When it comes to guns and marijuana I lean Libertarian. On issues of the greater good I lean Communitarian. When it comes to Civil Rights, corporate regulations, and workforce issues I lean Liberal. And I am completely Conservative in regards to military and fiscal issues. I am a registered Republican, but I fundamentally agree and disagree with each party equally.
Since 2014, I’ve been a Ward Leader. As a Ward Leader, I pledge to support the Republican nominee in every election. But before becoming a Ward Leader, I did not mind splitting the ticket. Here are some of my previous political choices for office (locally, statewide, and federal):
For President, George Bush ’92- In my opinion, there was no one person more prepared to be President. And I believe he was the greatest President of my lifetime. For Senator, Arlen Specter ’92 thru ’10- Along with Bush ’92, they are the reason I registered Republican. Specter is the only reason I remained a registered Republican. And as you will see, my voting patterns trended with Specter. For Governor, Tom Ridge ’94 & ’98- Bush & Specter made me pay attention to Ridge. He is, in my opinion, the best PA Governor of my lifetime. For President, Perot ’96, and George Bush ’00 & ’04. For Governor, Ed Rendell ’02 & ’06. For President, Obama ’08 & ’12. For Governor, Tom Corbett ’10.
As you can see, I have never been a straight ticket voter. Even I being a Centrist is a great story. I grew up in a two parent household, and my maternal grandmother lived with us.
My maternal grandmother, who was born in 1913, was a Republican for the obvious reasons. She was born in a small town on the eastern shore of Maryland, right off of the Sassafras River. The same area that encompassed much of Harriet Tubman’s Underground Railroad. She was an Eisenhower Republican. She viewed the Democratic Party as the racist party. Even after the southern strategy, she still hung with the GOP. Her parents were not far removed from the Emancipation. And as a child she told me, “Republicans freed the slaves and fought for black people.” She moved to Philadelphia where she worked in the houses of rich Jewish families. She loved Arlen Specter but she also liked Frank Rizzo, who at that time was a Democrat. I remember how excited she was when Wilson Goode, another Democrat, got elected; and how very proud she was that she voted for him. She always made it clear that in the general election she voted for the best man for the job.
My father was a UAW sheet metal worker, who was heavily involved in the union. He would always say I was wasting time coaching collegiate track. “Just get a good city union job so you can get a good pension,” he would tell me. Even though he was a Democrat he was very much a social conservative. But he was a complete pro-labor Democrat. I’ve always said if my father was alive today, I probably would have ran my first race as a Democrat. When I told him I was voting for Bush ’92, he said I was “hard headed.” And when I voted for Bush ’00 he said, “Boy you’re still hard headed!” I told him I wanted to move back to Philadelphia from King of Prussia and run for City Council as a Republican. He told me to “keep that Republican nonsense out in Montgomery County.” Although he was a Democrat loved Arlene Specter, he always voted for Specter, and so did my entire house. Specter was the only politician that the entire house agreed about.
So due to my upbringing it’s natural that I’m Centrist in my political views, growing up in a politically split household.