A while back a good friend of mine referred to me as his "Republican friend from New Mexico". And technically, he's correct, on my voter registration card it stated I registered as a Republican. I don't know if I ever explicitly told him that, or if he inferred it from the Christian message in most of the posts here. ("Christian" usually is usually equated with "conservative", especially when talking about politics and the "Christian conservative vote").
To be honest, I can't tell you why I registered as a Republican when we moved to New Mexico, when we lived in Nebraska and Iowa I was registered as an Independent (thus exempting me from participating in the primary and caucus process, but what can you do?)
I feel that a person's vote is a personal matter and I won't go into exactly how I exercised my right to vote; but let me be very clear on one matter: my political affiliation listed on my voter registration does not represent my support for the actions of politicians who are members of that political party. 'nuf said.
As the Presidential race dominates the headlines these days, I am learning something: The political parties as they exist today are becoming more and more polarized and are drifting further and further away from anything that truly resembles the views of the average American citizen - the middle class working people who really only care about what directly affects them.
I'm finding that my political views are landing somewhere in the political no-mans-land that is not represented by either party - or more correctly a little by one party and a little by another and a bunch of fuzzy gray area that neither party fully lays claim to, though both kind of hem and haw around.
I do have very strong views when it comes to some issues, like Pro-life vs. Pro-choice, so-called "Gay marriage", things like that. However, I have found that if I vote to those convictions, that doesn't get me anywhere. Two things I've discovered, you can't legislate morality (specifically, religious morality), and if people choose to do things that are contrary to my morality it doesn't really have any direct effect on me or my family(unless they choose to murder my family, but no one is about to repeal any law regarding homicide.)
(Sidebar: If, just for example, I were really desperate for this country to end abortion, I would no longer do it by demanding my government do something about it. Instead I would work through individual people, starting with my own children, to help them be in a position where that choice won't even be an issue for them. Hypothetically speaking.)
What I want, what I really want out of the political parties in this country (besides having them either go away or totally rebuild themselves into a system where non-rich people matter) is candidates that will do something for ME and MY FAMILY and PEOPLE LIKE US. Do something that makes it cheaper to drive my car, get medical care, and basically just make overall survival easier or cheaper or generally just make more sense.
I'm not a conservative. The thought of being put in the same category as Rush "pulled-myself-up-by-my-own-designer-calf-skin-gold-plated-leather-bootstraps-and-you-should-too" Limbaugh makes me want to gag. It's hard to pull yourself up by your bootstraps when you can't even afford boots. I'm not a liberal. I do feel that people need to take some personal responsibility and not rely on government to take care of everything for them or fix everything with money. Some people that need help can't get it, and others are getting help that don't need it. Government shouldn't be so polarized that this situation continues.
So don't call me Republican, and don't call me Democrat. Who am I going to vote for? At this point it's about the lesser of two evils, and I'm not sure that's a good place to be in.