After several months of consideration, I filed for candidacy with the Federal Election Commission on September 8th, 2017, becoming an official candidate for New York's 23rd Congressional District.
I am running as an independent.
I choose this path because party politics is a large part of the problem in Washington. In fact, the partisan divide is itself the greatest danger to our democracy. It causes dysfunction in our government and hobbles our ability to appropriately react to a changing and dangerous world. As this divide grows wider and more toxic, it divides us as well, at a time when we need unity more than ever.
I also choose this path because someone needs to speak for those of us who have been left out. I have never been affiliated with any political party and have therefore never voted in a primary. I am not alone in this, as more and more people register as independent. Who can blame us, as both parties become more beholden to their biggest donors, and all debate is reduced to loudest and most well financed voices from the extremes of left and right.
Finally, I choose this path because WE the PEOPLE need someone to represent US - all of US. We need representation that serves the interests of the people and not of corporations, not of PAC's, and not of the political parties. Because I want to represent the people and only the people, I will accept no contributions from PAC's or corporations. Period.
I choose to run for the House not only because I live here but because it is the most democratic of our institutions. Since every seat is up for reelection, it is also the place where the most rapid change can happen and it is where I feel I can do the most good. We have to start somewhere. Let's start here. Let's start now.
- James Brian Clasby