First and foremost, I am a proud Democrat. I chose to be a Democrat; it was not thrust upon me. I chose to be a Democrat because the platform and values of the Democratic Party reflect my values.
I believe in equality for women. I would have voted for Lilly Ledbetter and the Equal Pay Act. The majority of my Republican friends would not.
I believe in equal rights of all people under the law. I believe in a woman’s right to choose during the early stages of pregnancy. I believe the government should not impose laws that restrict the right of a physician to prescribe medication to a patient on purely "moral" grounds.
I believe that the expression "judge the individual, and not the party" should be used by the voter, not the candidate. When it is used by the voter, it means the voter has found a quality in the candidate of the party he does not usually align with that the voter admires.
I hope that voters of all parties will judge me for who I am. Included in that analysis they may consider that I am running as a Democrat. I will not ask you to judge me as an individual, and ignore my party, because the fact that I joined my party is a fair piece of information available to the voter for consideration and in my case I am proud of my choice.
Of course, I am not beholden to a party and do not agree with everything it has pursued.
One issue with which I disagree is casino gambling. I do not think the Commonwealth should rely on funding that comes largely from people who cannot afford to contribute. I do not think it is a good idea for the Commonwealth to pluck a percentage of the losses of gamblers. What goes on in Las Vegas should stay in Las Vegas, or, in my opinion, not come here.
As a teenager, I lived in Ledyard, Conn., the home to Foxwoods casino. Foxwoods was not built when I lived there, but I still hear from people who are there. The casino has harmed the region. It creates terrible traffic, as the roads and bridges of the small community were not built for the huge amount of congestion attracted to the region. The casino may be a destination, but very few of its patrons stop to support other local interests (the tourist area in Mystic several miles away aside).
Even if people in a particular area of Massachusetts are in favor of a casino, I still would not support it. I would not put something I would not want in my backyard in somebody else’s neighborhood. For that reason, I would not have voted in favor of casino gambling.