I’ve been involved in some worthwhile dialogue recently about political realities encountered when contemplating a run for office. My view has always been idealistic, I suppose. I appreciate the two-party system. I am often enamored by serious third-party candidates, however. My disappointment with the status quo has led me to believe that real solutions will be offered not by either of the major parties, but by a new independent movement. Though the idea is appealing to many, the same people tell me it’s virtually impossible. I understand the arguments but find myself unwilling to accept them anymore.
I’ve been a registered Republican since I came of voting age many years ago. Increasingly, I’ve found myself pulling the lever for candidates of all stripes – Republican, Democrat, Independent, Conservative – especially at the local level where ideology often counts for less. The cumulative effect of the political bickering and maneuvering between the various parties has achieved very little other than consistently increasing the tax burden. I’ve had enough.
I’ve discovered recently that party structure and decision-making is rigid and controlled, driven by motives and mechanisms I don’t have any interest in. I mistakenly believed that our interest as citizens was paramount. I’m disappointed to learn otherwise.
I find myself at a political crossroads of sorts. I’m not a politician. A purely independent run is daunting and appealing in the same breath. But if I don’t win, then what was the point? I’m not looking to make a valiant stand for idealism – I’m looking to make a real contribution to the betterment of my community. I want to make a positive difference toward preserving, protecting, and enhancing the Quality of Life of my neighbors. I think I have something worthwhile to contribute to that end. I need a stronger voice than the one I’ve been exercising as a voter and concerned citizen.
In the end, labels are irrelevant. If elected, I’ll serve everyone – Republican, Democrat, whatever – equally anyway. Does it really matter what my label is? To some, surely. To most, I hope not. I won’t be beholden to anyone other than the residents. That’s the way it’s supposed to be, right?
My message will be concise and understandable. The path I take to deliver it might wind up being a bit unorthodox but I’m intent to deliver the message.