A Republican Party chairman from northeast Iowa is considering a vote for a Democratic candidate.
Neil Shaffer, who heads Howard County’s GOP, thinks President Donald Trump will again win support from voters who backed Barack Obama in 2012, but he’s been checking out the other party’s candidates, reported The Guardian.
“I’ve toyed with this whole idea of Pete Buttigieg just because I love his positive message,” Shaffer said. “That was what was so endearing about Ronald Reagan. It was always that shining city on the hill, Morning in America, tomorrow’s a new day, and it’s always going to be better.”
“I went and saw Pete Buttigieg in Decorah,” he added. “Sounded very moderate, very positive. Hardly even mentioned Trump, which I like. I like to listen to the plans not just the negativity.”
Shaffer, who describes himself as a 60/40 Republican, likes most of what he’s seen from Trump — especially on the economy and judicial nominations — but he’s also troubled by the president’s divisiveness and hostility toward immigrants.
“Trump thinks the system’s a problem whereas Buttigieg or (Joe) Biden are going to say the system can fix the problems,” he said. “It’s a whole different way of looking at how to solve problems.”
“I think my libertarian leanings allow me to be more open-minded to both sides of the political spectrum,” Shaffer added. “I honestly wouldn’t have had a hard time voting for Bill Clinton. Pete Buttigieg, he’s got some cultural issues. Obviously, his gayness is an issue. But we elected our first black man as president and we came pretty darn close to having our first woman as president. So I don’t see that as that big of an issue today as it was 20 years ago.”