Letter: Local GOP needs to be practical to win voters


The 2022 election results are in and there’s no other conclusion than the Island County Republicans got a shellacking. During the last two years we have lost five seats, challenged a very popular incumbent sheriff, discouraged the current Republican assessor from running and damaged our incumbents with the rhetoric that we openly displayed. In short, we spent more time diverting resources away from the most electable candidates then fortifying our position against the opposition. We made it easier for the Democrats to win in an already difficult situation for Republicans.

The election results of 2022 cast a huge shadow on the sunshine that should’ve shown on the Republicans during this election. God knows that we in the Pacific Northwest get little enough sunshine. Washington state is a blue state. Island County has turned into a blue county. The red wave of 2022 turned into a wipeout in Island County.

In 2020, President Trump got about 42% of the vote in Island County while President Biden got 55%. Being an unrelenting supporter of President Trump does not get Republicans elected in Island County or Legislative District 10. Even the red congressional district, WA 03, turned blue because the Republican congresswoman, elected since 2010, lost the primary against Joe Kent, who was a President Trump supported candidate. By the way, she won her 2020 election by 13 points over the Democrat. I hope this consequence isn’t pivotal to our gaining control of the House of Representatives. These are hard facts to swallow, but facts nonetheless.

Politics is not a spiritual pursuit based on absolutes, it’s about struggling to achieve the most important objectives, defining them clearly and pursuing them wholeheartedly together. Republicans are by nature independent thinkers, but focusing on the most important objectives must happen to achieve those goals. To me that would be to govern ourselves as locally as possible by supporting candidates who most align with our values, but are electable in our political reality. We elect our representatives who in turn are our voice at the table of government. If we continue dogmatically denying and acting contrary to our political reality in Island County, we will lose elections, no matter how loudly we scream from the sidelines. Republicans need to stand firm on their convictions, but also balance them with reality which is required in the political realm.

I welcome your thoughtful and constructive comments.

Maria Cablao