My wife and I consider ourselves independent voters. However, we do register in a political party — different ones.
She’s the Republican and I’m the Democrat.
We decided we would register in different parties when we first got married so our household would have at least one vote in each of the primaries. Politics wasn’t really a factor in the decision. Sometimes I’ve been the Republican and she has been the Democrat, but we oftentimes end up supporting the same candidates, regardless of party affiliation.
We have canceled out each other’s votes a few times, usually when it comes to president.
The downside with such an arrangement is that during the primary election season we get twice as much political junk mailings, texts and emails.
Recently my wife was shocked with one text she received. She said “here’s a guy who labels himself an ‘LDS candidate.’ Does he think just because we lived in Utah for so many years that we would automatically vote for a candidate because he is Mormon?”
“LDS” is a common reference to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and Mormons. It is used by Mormons and non-Mormons alike in general terms even though the church officially frowns on it.
Still, even in Utah, most candidates didn’t actively call themselves “LDS candidates,” even though most of them were, Republicans and Democrats, alike.
As my wife was ranting about using religion in politics, she handed me her phone and I read the text.
“That’s not LDS,” I said with a smile, “that’s LD8,” which refers to our legislative district.
She took the phone back, squinted at the text, then in her best Emily Litella impersonation said, “Never mind.”
(For you younger readers: Emily Litella was a fictional hard-of-hearing character created and performed by comedian Gilda Radner in a series of appearances on “Saturday Night Live.”)
A couple days later we got a visit from our “LDS candidate.” He rang the doorbell and my wife answered. She didn’t recognize his name as being the candidate whose legislative district she had confused with a religious affiliation. But she politely told him we had just sat down for dinner. He apologized and excused himself.
Days later we got a postcard from the candidate apologizing for interrupting our dinner. It was addressed to “resident.” Still, it was a nice personal touch.
The primary rush will come to an end Aug. 4 when in-person voting is held. Those who received ballots in the mail have until July 29 to return them by mail.
And remember, if voting by mail, to wear your glasses if you need to. You don’t want to confuse your ballot with your church tithing pledge card. Then it may not be a political candidate who rings your doorbell at dinnertime.
You can contact Andy Howell at email@example.com.