As a new voter I’m challenged to make sense of the American system and to effectively evaluate my choices of ”Democrat,” ”Republican,” ”Libertarian,” ”Green,” and ”Independent.”

I’m wary of the Democratic Party for it’s characterization as the ”Tax and Spend” party. I’m especially wary of the Republicans because of the sad legacy of Reagenomics and the fallout of their platform plank of de-regulation. Sadly, tax cutting and de-regulation are still at the top of the Arizona Republican platform.

Much of the Libertarian approach makes sense yet strikes me as unrealistic and impractical. In a sense, Libertarians, Greens, and Independents may amount to little more than ”ticket splitting.” Studies of Independents have variously characterized them as either a party realignment in process or as a values and beliefs voting block who are strongly anchored on one issue and who choose candidates according to that issue.

My preliminary considerations clearly suggest that I am most strongly aligned with Democratic policies at this point. The current economic detritus brings the imperative of appropriate financial regulation to the political forefront. It is also clear that budgets cannot be balanced by forever rolling back taxes. Nobody likes taxes but current levels of services cannot be funded without anteing up increased rates of contributions to the public purse at all levels of individual and corporate income.

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