Jon Haffenden likes to run into voters outside the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. He was sitting in the airport’s carrier lounge reading a book when we struck up a conversation.
“I never really thought much about running for office,” said Mr. Haffenden, a 45-year-old software developer who lives in San Antonio. “But my dad’s going to have a heart attack soon.”
According to Mr. Haffenden, who won a seat in the Texas House of Representatives in 2002, his older brother, who lives in Phoenix, has been very sick with cancer. “The administration seems to think he is going to die in two weeks,” he said. “So what I’m thinking is that if they really wanted to do something about my dad’s health care, then they’d make the plans.”
We talked about health care and whether Texas should expand Medicaid.
“The concerns of the elderly are very different than the concerns of the working poor,” he said. “I don’t want my vote to be about whether or not the disabled will get care, which makes sense. But people are being forced to quit work because they have high-deductible health insurance plans.”
Mr. Haffenden, who will be voting for President Donald Trump in November, thinks the popular perception of GOP voters has gotten out of whack. “When I walked into a polling place recently, I saw at least one woman who was walking around angrily because she saw two men making out in the middle of the day,” he said. “Apparently these guys were Republicans.”