(D-109, NYS Assembly)
When did you become political? Were there any specific events in your life that caused you to become actively involved?
I grew up in Chicago in a very political town, so my parents were always political. They’re immigrants, and were always newspaper readers. I was coming up in the 60s when politics were huge. It was a very volatile time and I was very young and very impressionable. I didn’t become active until grad school in mid-80s. Then for many years I was in DC, where politics are obviously huge. I started in social work and realized I couldn’t affect change as much as I wanted to so I got into politics.
Do your political affiliations reflect those of your immediate friends and family or not? Do you discuss those things?
We talk politics all the time. In my immediate family, my kids are teenagers so my kids would probably be more liberal than me. My views tend to be more practical than my children or husband even. I work in government so I know the work that goes into pushing agendas, not just promoting them. And, I’m very influenced by my parents, who came from limited means. My parents both depression era children, and I’ve come to realize that as I’ve gotten older in life.
What are the issues in this election that are most important to you and how will they immediately affect you and your loved ones?
Some of issue I guess are most important is what candidates can move us on income inequality. The issues that are driving me are are education and jobs and I do believed that those are the issues driving the income inequality in our economy. Resolving these issues means focusing on youth, who can rally make changes, opening up opportunities to our youth, and making sure they have as many opportunities as the last generation did. The income inequality gap is really at the undercurrent at some of the very partisanship and craziness of this election. We need someone who can unite us behind issues and turn around the economy. One because who has the experience to make change. There are certain things about a few of the candidates that I’ve liked, but Hillary has the experience to make those changes. Also internationally we’re at a very difficult time, and I think having the experience there to make change will matter as well.
How do you see your candidate’s platform as addressing those issues?
Her experience. She knows the right leaders and the right people. I’ve had the opportunity to lobby for her. I’ve seen her when she was a senator and I’ve had the opportunity to meet her and her staff on the ground. She is the hardest person working in our business in a lot of ways. When she was working in the senate she learned ways to achieve her goals. She was a champion for the youth, a champion for young adults right as the recession hit. I’ve liked so much about what Senator Sanders has said, but she is the one that can get it done I think… Donald Trump has some simplistic ideas, without demonstrating the ability to carry them out. To me, nothing about Hillary is simplistic. I think she’s more battle tested than many four starred generals. Even when facing setbacks she keeps coming back, and I think that serves her very well. She knows how to muscle through and keep coming back. She has shown extraordinary experience. Things for instance Bernie has said, she has the experience to get it done.
What was the most memorable part of the rally/rallies you attended?
Having my teenaged daughter with me. I think it makes a big difference between what you see on TV on those 30-second sound bites and actually being able to see Hillary Clinton in person and hearing a full speech, seeing her through the eyes of a teenager, and seeing how impressed she was. She walked away so impressed and it left a lasting impression.