What does it mean to be a Republican or a Democrat?
I would first like to tell you what it is not. It is not like being a fan of a team, and rooting for (or in this case voting for) the team of your choice.
In sports, you would follow, and root for your team, or your alma mater, pretty much no matter who the coach is, or who the current players are.
I think a lot of people look at politics this way. So many people don’t look at the candidates and what they stand for. Most people will say “I am a democrat” or “I am a Republican” go to the polls, do little or no research on the actual stance, policies, and record for the candidates and vote for the Republican or Democrat like they would root for the Cubs or the White Sox.
This is much more important than that.
First thing people should do is determine what they themselves stand for. Than for each race, local, state, and national, find the candidate, regardless of party, that most fits their beliefs and vote for them.
Of course the politicians of all parties often make it difficult to get a straight answer on their stance or views. Often, if you ask what someone thinks about something they will give you double talk and not a real answer on where they stand. DO NOT ACCEPT THAT. If a politician can not be honest and open with you during the campaign, how will they be honest and open with you once they are in office?
Then, inspect what you expect. That means, if you expect the person you are voting for is Pro-Life for example, check his or her actual voting record on that. If you hold your right to keep and bear arms as an important right, look at the candidate’s actual voting record on those issues. If you oppose tax increases, and wasteful government spending, look at their record, how did they vote on tax increases in the past, how they voted on spending in the past.
It is unlikely you will find someone who agrees with you on everything you believe in, but if you find someone who you agree with on most issues, that is the person you should support, regardless of party.
Remember, you are voting for an individual in each race, you are not voting for a party like you would root for a team.
As an American, you have the right to vote, but you also have an obligation to do your own homework on the candidates.