Medway resident Paul Yorkis is down in North Carolina for the Democratic National Convention and he is ready to make in impact. In a question and answer interview with Patch Yorkis expressed his interest in policy forums and learn about how technology has impacted campaigning.
Patch: How did you become a Delegate?
Paul Yorkis: I ran as a Delegate within the new 4th congressional district which is part of Jim McGovern's current district and part of Barney Frank's current district. I was elected at a caucus of registered Democrats from the new 4th. I campaigned via email and in person at Democratic Town Committee meetings and at various events for Democrats.
Do you think your presence at the convention will make a difference?
I hope so and I believe so. The convention is more than just the events broadcast on TV. There are a great number of meetings and policy forums for Democrats from across the nation to share ideas on housing, jobs, lending practices, equal rights, the environment, veterans, foreign policy issues, etc. Most delegates attend several of these events to share and to learn.
This is your first national convention since 1980, how do you think the party has changed since then?
I do think the nation has changed and I think the party has changed. The nation has changed in part because we are now in a world where news and opinion, facts and non-facts, are instantly transmitted at the nation and the world. The internet has changed how people communicate, how they obtain information, and they express ideas and opinions. When I ran as a delegate in 1980 it was a lot of face-to-face meetings and discussions. Today it is send me an email or text. Many people would rather text than talk. In 1980 there were no cell phones, at least none that I was aware of. Today the smart phones help the campaign process and help keep the organization working smoothly. The Democratic Party today I think pretty much reflects the same core values it did in 1980.
What are you most excited about?
There is a great line up of folks who are going to be addressing the convention. Being there to hear them in person is going to be great. Meeting leaders of the Democratic Party from across the nation will be great as well. The Massachusetts Delegation is an incredibly diverse group of folks in terms of race, age, experience, gender, and sexual orientation. The entire state is represented. I am extremely proud to be part of the delegation.
What do you wish more people knew about Barack Obama?
President Obama outlined his goals when he took office. He believed then and still believes today that the best solutions to our nations challenges come from people working together to address those challenges. I think many Americans do not understand that a President, any President, needs to lead and set a direction for the nation once elected. What President Obama has wanted to do, has tried to do, is to work with Democrats and Republicans in congress to develop the best solutions possible but has encountered great resistance because of some folks simply don't want him to succeed, because some folks don't like him, and because some folks do not know how to compromise. I believe that the President has been frustrated by those who simply would rather prevent problems from be solved because it may appear that the President has accomplished one or more of his goals.