What Does Being A "Centrist" Mean To You, And Why Did You Get Involved?
I have laughingly called myself a “retired Republican” since 1985. Growing up in the populist, pork-barrel spending, rural south, the Democratic party did not appeal to me as an education-focused, fiscal conservative who wanted to believe in hard work, the American Dream, and meritocracy. Yet, at age 18, as a blue collar kid striving for an Ivy League/Seven Sisters level education, I realized that the Republicans did not support the education and financial aid programs needed for me to achieve the American Dream. I’ve been a fiscally conservative, socially progressive independent ever since – and I mourn the loss of the “meaningful middle” in American politics and the functional government it inspires.
What Is A Policy Issue You Are Passionate About And Why?
I live to prove that one can be an energy industry executive and an environmentalist at the same time. I fight for our Constitutional rights – all of them, without cherry-picking. I fight for practical problem-solving because I am a fiscal conservative who believes that there are some difficult things that the private sector can not, or will not, accomplish on their own. I believe that I should not be able to discern the party affiliation of a good judge. And I believe that we must prioritize education, and a practically constructed and sustainable social safety net, as the bedrock of the American Dream.
How Do You Think We Can Unite Our Country And Fix Politics?
Take the power away from dark money and gerrymandering so that the real diversity of a community is reflected in the vote. Develop the functioning center so that people have to appeal to it. Unlock collaboration and innovation as a result.
Anything Else You'd Like To Add?
I choose country over party! All day long.