I don't write about politics very often, though I do vote almost every time there is an election in my area. I do admit to missing one or two local elections but that is very rare.
As an eighteen year old teenager, like almost everyone in Louisiana back then, I joined the Democratic party and when I voted I usually voted democratic. I did not vote in the 1980 presidential election even though I was twenty at the time. I was in the Navy and at the time of the election I was on board the USS Francis Hammond. The Francis Hammond, FF 1067, was at the time of the election deployed to the Gulf of Oman, which is near the Straits of Hormoz just off the coast of Iran, but I very strongly supported Ronald Reagan. As one serving in the US Armed Forces I had a strong dislike for the feeble leadership of Jimmy Carter. Reagan was the only Republican I would have voted for that then.
Four years later, I was back in South Louisiana and still a moderately loyal member of the Democratic Party. I was married, and my wife was pregnant for our first child. I was working as a labourer, doing odd jobs at a local refinery. I met a guy at the plant that was very active in the Democratic Party and he had been a delegate at an earlier Democratic Presidential convention. He told me that he had a copy of the Democratic Party Platform. I mentioned that I would like to read it and he loaned it to me.
I took the Platform home, read it from cover to cover and returned it to it's owner. The next time I had a day off I went to the parish courthouse and changed political parties. I was disturbed by what I read in the platform.
I was now a Republican and got more involved in the political process. I now voted "mostly" Republican, but I did vote independent on occasion and for Democrats I liked if they were running for local offices.
I was never a "party" guy. I have always been willing to vote for the person I thought best even if they belonged to the "liberal" party, because there were still some good Conservative Democrats.
When the Republicans had control of the Congress and the Presidency they proved to be just as addicted to pork (though it was a different cut off the pig) as the Democrats had been. I got more and more disgusted by them, so when I moved and had to update my voter registration, I decided to register independent. I no longer belong to any political party, and I've been registered this way for nearly four years.
Now to the Primary. I will not be able to vote in the primary because you have to be a member of one of the major parties to participate and I am not. With that said, there is NO ONE one the Democratic side of the ticket that I could, with a good conscience, vote for. On the Republican side, depending on who wins the nomination, I MAY BE able to vote for their candidate next November. IF I do I may have to hold my nose when I do it. I may decide to vote third party, but we are to far from that day to even think about it right now. I did vote third party once before (and no it was not for Ross Perot). It is always an option.