One of the benefits of considering oneself a member of a political party is the proxy value of that membership. Here's what I mean. If someone runs as a Republican in a race against a Democrat, I can know nothing about the particulars of the race but STILL have some basic sense of how I should vote simply because someone adheres to the same party as I. And if I do not educate myself on those particulars, the party proxy is sufficient for me to vote for that person.
We have in our county, and elected council. One of the members of the council is a friend of ours, Catherine more than me, but a friend nonetheless. He is a Republican. I know this only because I had to do significant searching around to figure it out. It is nowhere on his electioneering material, his yard signs, his bumper sticker--nada. He is in fact, a member of a small subgroup of county council members who sorta run as a block--Democrat and Republican--under the banner of "County over Party".
I decided that I was not going to vote for him in the upcoming election, because of his attempt to be apolitical. During a conversation with the Kitten yesterday, she was much exercised by this revelation. Now the Kitten and I don't do politics all that well, because the few things she cares about, she cares about deeply, and sometimes I disagree but care far less deeply. Those conversations never end well. The Kitten was really taken aback by my stance, and insisted that it didn't make sense. I made the counterargument that it makes perfect sense, that I prefer to spend my days thinking and reading about national and international issues, and that I use the "party proxy" to guide my local decisions. This simply didn't wash, and I could see that she was getting a bit upset with me--not only because she is friends with the guy I wasn't going to vote for, but because in her opinion, his stances on the issues were much better aligned with the interests of our household. Sensing the significant likelihood of there being no good way out of this, I stumbled upon an idea of true genius.
I said, "ok, Kitten. You will be m proxy. I will consult with you on local elections and matters, and rather than use the party as my proxy, I'll use you." Problem solved. Pure, f*****g genius.