SIDNEY — Shelby County Democrats gathered Thursday night at the home of the local party committee chairman, Tom Kerrigan, to watch Hillary Clinton on television as she accepted the Democratic nomination for president.
Kerrigan had voted for Clinton in the primary election and is excited that she is the party’s candidate.
“I absolutely believe it’s time for a woman to be president of the United States,” he said. Beyond her gender, Clinton, he feels, will do good things for the nation’s economy.
“I’m a small businessman and I’m not a socialist,” he said. “I really believe that if Hillary is elected, the business economy will go through the ceiling. The stock market will double. That’s just my opinion.”
Kerrigan is concerned about the role he thinks the country has assumed as the world’s policeman.
“I think Hillary will do a great job as commander in chief. Especially compared to the alternative. He’s patronizing the Russians. He hates women, disabled people, Hispanics, and he likes Russians. He’s a bad reality TV show,” Kerrigan said of Republican candidate Donald Trump.
Kerrigan’s mother, Shirley Kerrigan, of Sidney, voted for Bernie Sanders in the primary; however, she said the demonstrations by Sanders supporters at the convention were “ridiculous.”
Now, she’s solidly behind Clinton.
“I wish they’d get off of the thing that they don’t trust her. They’re just hammering that into the ground,” Shirley said. At 86, she has voted in a lot of elections. And she has not always been a Democrat.
“My husband and I, one of us was a Democrat and one was a Republican. When he would go to work, I would put a Republican sign in the window of the house. I’d take it down before he came home each night,” she said. As she remembers it, she voted for Dwight Eisenhower, a Republican, in her first presidential election in 1952.
“My friends were Republicans and I just went along with them,” she said. It was John F. Kennedy who made her a Democrat. A Scottish-Irish Catholic, herself, she was thrilled to vote for the first Catholic to run for presidential office.
“And I’ve voted Democrat ever since 1960,” Shirley said.
“She’s happy now that she gets to vote for a woman,” said her son.
June Laughlin, of rural Sidney, who chaired the local Democrats for eight years, is also pleased that the party’s candidate is a woman.
“Time will tell what the outcome of the election will be, but I’m sure we’re writing a lot of history,” she said. Laughlin also is pleased that the woman is Clinton.
“Hillary’s background and experience is unmatched by any other presidential candidate we’ve ever had,” she said. “She brings more, different types of experience. She has foreign experience. That’s something her opposition knows nothing about.”
“I can’t remember an election to get so much discussion in our house,” said Jodi Siegel, of Fort Loramie. She and her husband have three children, two of whom will be old enough to vote, come November.
“It’s going to be an interesting election to watch,” she said. Although she’s a Democrat, she doesn’t agree with the entire party platform. The proposition for stricter gun laws is an issue in the Siegel household of hunters, she noted.
“I want to encourage everyone to vote (though),” Siegel said. “There have been so many people say they don’t know if they will vote, but there are so many local issues that impact us.”