A question often asked is “How does Matt Shea keep getting elected?” If you’re not on Shea’s side of the political isle it’s simple to assume that it’s because the people who vote for him are completely in line with his thought processes and ideology. Which, quite frankly, is the easy way out when it comes to answering this question.
The current political culture dictates that we assume the worst about anyone who has voted for candidates in the party we don’t align with. If you’re pro-choice then you must be ok with killing babies. If you’re pro-gun then you must be ok with children getting shot in school.
This mantra that we automatically dehumanize and defame the character of someone who aligns with the opposing party with regurgitated ad-hominem talking points we hear in the mainstream media is dishonest and disingenuous at the absolute best. In many cases the answer to a simple question is complex.
Being an individual who voted for Shea on multiple occasions hopefully my comments will provide some insight to this seemingly simple question. For a moment leave out your political affiliations and take an objective posture to the answer of the question.
The constituents of the 4th Legislative District are just like any other American Citizen. They have careers and own businesses. They have children with extracurricular activities, PTA meetings, hobbies, and all of life’s little surprises to deal with. Just like the rest of us, they’re busy living their lives. Many are also relatively conservative.
What they hear is “less taxes, less government, more freedom.” These men and women look at his voting record and hear his talking points. They want their property rights, gun rights, water rights, less regulations over their businesses, fiscal responsibility, and less taxes being taken from those businesses and paychecks. When they look at his voting record this is what they are seeing him fight for. Agree or disagree with that platform, it’s the truth.
Now you’re probably reading this and thinking, “How does this mean they are not completely in line with his ideology and beliefs?” That answer is derived from the former statements.
Due to the political divide when they hear a media outlet come out against Shea they ignore it since it’s par for the course these days. Just as many of us do no matter what party we align with when it comes to a perceived attack on our preferred candidate. With a busy work schedule, children, hobbies, and life happening all around them they look at the superficial selling points of his platform and run with it because they do not have the time to dive into what is going on behind the scenes. Just as many of us do.
Having said all of that, my fellow conservatives and libertarians, there is no shortage of qualified and intelligent individuals who would make phenomenal candidates and run on the platform of “less taxes, less government, more freedom.”
Tanner Rowe is a life-long Spokane resident, former Matt Shea supporter, and host of Podcast Northwest.
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