#WithHerFirst: Paula, Milwaukee
Meet Paula, a Milwaukeean who is knocking on doors, making calls, and excited to get out the vote for Hillary! We caught up with Paula on the first day of early voting in her municipality to hear why she supports Hillary and Tim.
“My dad was a career marine, my mom started working by making phones at Motorola. My parents immigrated here, and I’m a first generation American — I feel like I’ve been really fortunate to have that American dream because my parents came to this country so we could have a better life.
I moved to Wisconsin seven years ago to do an AmeriCorps program called Public Allies. I did ten months of public service, working specifically with refugees. Before the people participating in our program would get here, I would make sure their apartments were set up, I would go to the airport when they got here, welcome them, get them to their apartments, and then focus mostly on preventative health classes. We would talk about things that we wouldn’t even think about, like in the winter explaining proper ways of heating your home and fire safety.
My experience at AmeriCorps is one of the reasons why I celebrate service and why I love Hillary Clinton—because she has that service focus. Hillary talks about how being a good citizen is serving the country in whatever fashion you think fits. Even when you look at the college debt plan, she is looking to the history of you doing service — she’s a huge supporter and I think it’s really important because those were formative times for me.
My dad was in the military. Serving our country and valuing democracy was very important in my family. We grew up with the Filipino news on and then the nightly news on with my dad — nightly news being Bill O’Reilly. I was raised Republican.
The first campaign I ever worked on was a Republican state senate campaign. I was 18 years old, knocking on doors and campaigning for Republicans. I was lucky because I had parents that cared about being involved, and feeling like your vote mattered.
And then I was in the ministry and saw how not everyone had the same opportunities I did. It made me realize that even though the church is a very important part of society, we still need the support of the government for a strong democracy. We have to have a greater public good that we all can agree on, because not every has the same faith and we can’t rely on one group of people.
Just like Hillary says, we need to be stronger together. We all need to do our fair share.
It’s not equal. Not everybody can just work hard and have what I have. This mindset made me transition into being a Democrat.
Hillary cares about women, children, and families — she’s consistently been somebody that has lived a life for others. If you look at what she’s done, you can see that. During the Democratic National Convention, she said that within the first six months of her presidency she will implement an economic plan that focuses on the middle class. She has my vote right there, knowing that she focuses on infrastructure, which is something we need—especially in Milwaukee and our local cities.
Creating and sustaining jobs is really important. Preserving public education — being able to have people go through school and not be in six figures of debt, that’s something she values. She has been a champion for the environment, and that’s something that we all need to consider.
Hillary is a candidate who has real plans that are detailed and clearly laid out. That foresight and that thoughtfulness—it’s unparalleled to anybody who has run for president this election.
Her campaign is really inspiring me! I want to run for office someday and believe if she can do it, then I can do it. It’s important to have that in society: where you can see people that represent you, lead you.”