Welcome to the Party
Matt Fetick recalls canvassing for Ronald Reagan around Chester County with his mom in the 1980s. The Republican Party at that time promoted itself as the party of family values, fiscal conservatism and smaller government. Today, the mayor of Kennett Square realizes that party is long gone. The Republican Party under Trump has abandoned its principles for the sake of enabling an authoritarian charlatan and clinging to a status quo falsely branded as patriotic. Reagan’s message of unity has morphed into Trump’s message of division.
Until this year, Fetick was a registered Republican, running on that ticket for each of his three terms as mayor. It was only natural for the Chester County native to stay on the traditionally red, conservative path. But over time, he’d been getting more and more uncomfortable with the direction the party was headed. He felt a responsibility to stay with the party under which he’d been elected, so he sought to be the voice of reason from within. He found that the people controlling the narrative didn’t want change. There was no longer a seat at the table for him.
The absolute refusal of the Republican Party to deliver a comprehensive immigration reform policy and their abject failure to act on healthcare reform gradually eroded his identification with the Republican platform. But it was the ousting of Marie Yovanovitch – the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine – that was the last straw and a turning point. A lifelong public servant (he was a police officer and paramedic before moving on to real estate), Fetick could no longer associate himself with a party that would not only abandon but vilify a career diplomat. He changed his party registration to Democrat.
As the mayor of a small, diverse town, Fetick knows the importance of standing up for your neighbors. He sees the Democratic Party as providing a seat at the table for everyone. He knows there are fellow voters in his shoes: those who identified as Republicans for most of their lives but now feel abandoned by their party. He’s doing his part to make sure the Democratic Party capitalizes on this opportunity to bridge the gap with moderates looking outside their bubbles for the first time.
So, heading into the general election, you’ll see Fetick out and about canvassing for candidates on the November 3rd ballot. This time, however, it’s the Democrats he will be supporting!