What a Difference a Year Makes

By: Cassie Barbieri

Last week, thanks to Facebook memories, I was reminded of where I was after the close of the 2016 Democratic Primary. I won’t lie; I was disgusted with the Democratic Party. In fact, you can read my words yourself. Words I eat today.

I just ended a 17 year relationship with the Democratic party. I was loyal, I trusted them, and they let me down. If they expect me to fall in line like I always have & vote for someone they decided to crown queen before their people have spoken they are vastly mistaken. That relationship is over.

You might be calling me a hypocrite right now and if you did, you’d be 100% right. The fact is, I did go back. Not only did I go back, I became a PC for my Legislative District and now even sit on the board. I helped found AZ Blue 2020 and am working my tail off for the party by which I felt so betrayed.

But why? Well in one word, Trump.

I, like you probably, did not think it could happen. But happen it did. You see, by walking away from the Democratic Party, I did exactly what the GOP salivates over–I lessened the liberal vote. And to lessen a liberal voice in our current climate is not something my conscience will allow. My holding a grudge won’t secure my two daughters’ reproductive rights. My bitterness is not going to protect our planet from the vultures now in power. A protest vote won’t provide insurance for the millions of people from whom the GOP wishes to strip it.

So today I write to tell you I was wrong and implore you to also reconsider if you still harbor the feelings I did last year. Do I still lack trust in the party? I do. Have I forgotten why I walked away? Not at all. Am I hypocrite? Perhaps.

I can tell you, as a re-registered Democratic voter, I’m very much holding the party accountable. I am not a quiet woman and very much speak my mind. I do so now as an active participant and with a voice that better warrants a listen. I was shocked to find that listen they did. Many in the Maricopa Democratic Party actually shared my views.

While I can’t control the party at the national level, (Yes Obama, I see you and your $400,000 speeches, tisk, tisk.) I can control who is running my community. And now, I’m one of them.



3 thoughts on “What a Difference a Year Makes

  1. John Ainlay

    I love your blog post, Cassie, because it expresses the ambivalent feelings many of us have struggled with over the last year. Thank you for your candor and for helping create AZ Blue 2020 which is a perfect vehicle for people like me who may not be 100% comfortable with the Democratic Party yet still want to work with the Party and through it to bring progressive change and take back our state and our country!

  2. Susie Thornton

    Cassie, I was where you were after the primary. I felt betrayed and heart-sick that Bernie wasn’t the candidate who would go up against Trump. I came close to leaving the party. But then I ended up in the same place you are now. However imperfect the Democratic Party is, it’s up to me to do what I can to make it what I believe it should be.

    Thank you for all your passion and activism. People like you make me feel hopeful that we can prevail.

  3. Jodie Galassi

    Cassie, I can’t blame you for feeling frustrated and betrayed. How could we have known how absolutely crazy this man would be as he has even surprised even the most cynical among us. Glad you are back and we are all lucky you are out there!


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