Patricia, age 77, sits at her crafting table on the thirteenth floor of an independent living apartment building in Vancouver. A longtime artist and crafter, she is surrounded with materials and mementos from a well-lived life. But she is concerned about what the future holds for her and her family. With bright eyes, she speaks emphatically of her support for President Obama and her fear of the Romney/Ryan agenda.
“If Romney wins, I would lose so much,” she says. “He wants to cut Medicaid and fool around with Medicare. He’d cut housing subsidies and food stamps. He’d cut my diabetes supplies. I don’t know what I’d do if he was elected. Truthfully, it scares the hell out of me.”
Patricia lives on a fixed income, and receives both Medicaid and Medicare. She feels the Romney/Ryan plan to end Medicare as we know it would adversely affect her ability to get necessary medical treatment that helps her survive. Also, she is a mother, grandmother, and soon-to-be great-grandmother, and she worries about what a Republican presidency could mean for her loved ones.
“If the Obama administration doesn’t stop the Republican onslaught, there’ll be nothing left for my family in the future,” she says. “The Republicans want to make sure every baby gets born, but they don’t want to take care of the children.”
When asked how she feels about President Obama, Patricia’s mood brightens.
“I like the president’s attitudes about seniors, women, low income families, and the middle class. I like how he’s handled foreign relations. He’s kept us out of more wars. And he stopped the Iraq War and is ending the Afghanistan War,” she explains.
Patricia points out that Republican obstructionism in Congress has prevented some of President Obama’s agenda from seeing action. She believes if the Democrats take back the House and retain the Senate, necessary legislation will be passed to encourage further economic recovery and job creation and prevent a Romney/Ryan tax plan that benefits the wealthy at the expense of the middle class.
“If we don’t elect a Democratic House and Senate, we’ll still be at a stalemate,” she worries.
Donating money to the Obama campaign from her tightly allocated income, Patricia hopes her contribution can help our president retain the White House. She feels President Obama understands the needs of elders, and is committed to helping them live well. Trusting our president to work for a brighter future for her grandchildren, she encourages everyone to get out and vote.
Smiling broadly while she scans a view of Mt. Hood from her crafting corner, she is optimistic. She’s lived long enough to know forward progress improves the human condition, one step at a time.