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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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“Necessary duty”: Spokane community leader voting for Biden, but not excited about it

Mariah McKay, a community organizer, has supported Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren in the past. She doesn't like Biden but thinks he will undo some of the damage from Trump.  (DAN PELLE/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW)
Mariah McKay, a community organizer, has supported Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren in the past. She doesn't like Biden but thinks he will undo some of the damage from Trump. (DAN PELLE/THE SPOKESMAN-REVIEW)

Mariah McKay is voting for Joe Biden, but she’s not really excited about it. It’s more of a “necessary duty.”

McKay, 37, supported Elizabeth Warren in the primary, and then Bernie Sanders once Warren dropped out. McKay has been an organizer in the Spokane community for years. Her focus in life is to deal with the despair of the country’s political chaos, something she says has become even more apparent in the last four years. 

She founded a business alliance organization that looks to create an equitable economy through organization and education. She also created Spokane’s first co-housing community. 

“We need to engage in better choices,” she said.

McKay doesn’t think Biden will be as bold with his policies as she hopes, but he will likely undo a lot of Trump’s policies that she says has been “assaulting communities’ rights on multiple levels.”

“I think Trump is a reprehensible human who’s brought shame to our country around the world,” she said.

Her priorities this election are tax reform, healthcare reform and immigration reform. After this economic recession, the government has a moral responsibility to invest in its communities, McKay said, and refusing to create an affordable housing solution is killing people.

It’s frustrating to see the policies of those in power shift so dramatically away from her beliefs, she said.

“It seems like what we’re calling for is no longer common sense,” McKay said. “It’s like a wishful dream.”

McKay didn’t volunteer for Biden, partially because she still doesn’t know what specific policies Biden supports, as most of his campaign has been about beating Trump.

She has low expectations, she said, but hopefully, Biden is just a step toward more progress.

“We have a flawed game, and we have to play that game,” McKay said.


Laurel Demkovich's reporting for The Spokesman-Review is funded in part by Report for America and by members of the Spokane community. This story can be republished by other organizations for free under a Creative Commons license. For more information on this, please contact our newspaper’s managing editor.

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