Do you know how your ancestors voted?
Voting, of course, is a very personal matter. There are myriad factors a person uses in deciding where to mark that X on the ballot. But the biggest factor for many of us is that we are firmly rooted in one political party, voting the same way our grandfathers and great-grandfathers did.
Louise Mohler, for example, has voted for every Republican presidential candidate since 1948 – Dewey, Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan, Bush 1, Bob Dole and Bush 2. But Louise faces a dilemma next month – she recently found out that she’s a distant cousin of Democratic candidate Barack Obama.
"You can tell this man is really brilliant," says Louise, acknowledging that her lengthy streak of GOP voting may soon come to a halt.
I’m not absolutely certain how my grandparents voted, but I have a pretty good idea. I don’t recall any overly heated political disputes in my own family, but I had plenty of friends in the 1960s whose political views were in direct conflict with their parents’ in quite visible, often bitter, ways.
In the current political climate, it’s interesting how some families are inadvertently drawn into the fray. Take the original Mavericks, for example. This Texas family has a lengthy history of supporting progressive issues yet its name has been co-opted generically by the McCain campaign as supporting its anti-liberal brand. Also, some non-Republican McCains around the country have banded together to form their own McCains for Obama group.
How about your family? Do you know your family’s political leanings? How did they affect the family dynamics?
Flickr photo courtesy of Just-Us-3.