City-County Councilwoman Christine Scales announced Wednesday she is dumping the GOP and becoming a Democrat.
"I ran for my council office as a Republican and have voted with the party for more than
40 years," Scales said on Facebook. "This is a difficult decision for me, but one I feel I must make in order to serve the best interest of my constituents.”
Councilor Christine Scales
Scales praised Mayor Joe Hogsett and council President Maggie A. Lewis for their leadership and inclusiveness.
"I anticipate accomplishing more of behalf of my constituents, as well as being able to better work toward the greater good of the City of Indianapolis," Scales said.
"This is a decision that allows me to elevate my level of service by aligning myself with those in the city whose goal it is to advance positive policy initiatives and work tirelessly to improve the quality of life for all residents.”When the news broke, several people asked me how I felt about the development. I totally understand where Christine is coming from. Job #1 for Christine has always been service to her constituents. Although a loyal Republican, partisan political battles always took a back seat to what was best for her constituents. Christine's was an understandable, indeed a commendable, approach to public service. But that approach earned her the ire of council GOP leadership and then Mayor Greg Ballard.
Christine indicated in the Star article that Mayor Hogsett and the Democrat-majority council is more interested in offering positive proposals for the City than local Republicans. Sadly she's right. For years, the GOP controlled the Council and held the Indianapolis Mayor's office and the focus seemed always on partisan battles and enriching campaign contributors rather than doing what is in the best interests of Indianapolis residents. You would think that losing the mayor's office and the majority on the Council would cause local Republican elected officials to wake up. But sadly GOP councilors, led by Minority Leader Michael McQuillen, continue to put politics ahead of constituents, i.e. voters
Christine finally had enough and chose to work with Democrats instead. While McQuillen and Marion County GOP leadership are quick to blame Christine, they can look in the mirror to find the people who should be blamed for losing Christine's critical vote on the council. Without her, the Council expands from 13-12 Democrat majority to 14-11.
I too know what it is like to be a life-long Republican who has had his faith in the party challenged. But for me, I'd rather fight for the conservative, constitutionally limited government values my party has long represented, values that are currently under assault by the phoniest of GOP prophets, Donald J. Trump. While my choice is to stay and fight for the soul of the Republican Party, I can understand why those who like Christine who, weary of the battle, make a different choice, a choice in Christine's case allows her to serve the people of her district better.
Regardless of whether Christine Scales is a Republican, a Democrat, a Libertarian or independent, you can bet that Christine will put the needs and wishes of her constituents first. And that is why she is one of the best public servants Indianapolis has ever had.