I needed to post this, to explain why I’m going to Napavine tomorrow morning, to vote for Cheryl Crist, who is challenging sitting incumbent Brian Baird for the party nomination to run for the 3rd Congressional District seat in the U.S. Congress. It is not an easy explanation for me to make.
I dissolved any ties I had (albeit loose ones) with the Washington State Republicans back in the late 1980s. An Evangelical Christian faction had basically taken over the party, and I could not stomach seeing the likes of the people who were rising to become leadership in the Legislature. I was revolted and turned off by them, in comparison to the Libertarian ideals which had drawn me, along with the cushy patronage jobs I kept secured by illegally campaigning for the state Republican Party. The illegal campaigning was all been done with orders from my boss in the House Republican Caucus Communications office, Leslie MacMillan, and the blessings of the House R Caucus Executive, and “sin industry” lobbyist Vito Chiechi, under the direction of none other than Jennifer Dunn, who later became one of our U.S. Senators. “Both sides do it, it’s okay, we’ll protect your jobs, just fill out these sick-day forms, and we’ll turn them in if the other side asks us why you’re missing” is what we were all told. From this experience, I feel I learned a lot about how people cut corners to get ahead, and why they should never do that when it comes to politics and their responsibilities in the public arena.
Alas, I’m older now, (and much more principled, I think) and feel I have to do something now to change the direction in which our country is headed. I was against the War in 2003, and I’m even more against it now. In fact, I’m against using war, weapons, and violence as a means to solve any economic, social or political disagreement, and I vow never to participate in such foolishness, but instead to help those who may be hurt in our community by such actions. (To some, this is a subversive statement, go figure.)
So tomorrow I travel to Napavine, to cast my vote as Precinct Committee Officer for my district as the Democrats try to re-assert control over who runs on their party ticket following repeated findings by courts that the primary process in Washington is unconstitutional. I will vote for Cheryl Crist. I don’t do it with glee, as I like Brian Baird well enough, I’ve communicated with him, and given advice on Telecommunications issues that affect consumers, and overall he’s done a decent job. However, he abdicated his responsibility as a Congressman under the constitution to declare war, and instead gave president Bush a blank check, and more war powers to the Presidency. He still feels we need to stay in Iraq, and that is too troubling to me to not do something to remove him from office.