With Election Day just over a week away, it’s a good time to remind the voters of Massachusetts that they have more than two choices when it comes to electing our next governor. This week I chat with Evan Falchuk, who is hoping to earn enough of the vote to qualify his United Independent Party as an official party in future state elections. I asked him why he’s doing it, plus what inspires him.
You’re running as the candidate of the United Independent Party. In fact, this is your party. I’d love to hear a little bit about why you think Massachusetts needs a third party.
This is a nationwide problem. Here in Massachusetts, most voters aren’t enrolled in one of the two political parties. We are building a framework for a lasting, independent voice. We have serious problems and challenges, and the establishment is not addressing them. Meanwhile, more than half of our state legislators are running unopposed in 2014. By 2016, we’ll have lots of smart independent candidates on the ballot and will bring real, meaningful reform to our politics, economy and government.
There have been a number of scandals recently—issues with the Massachusetts Health Connector website, the Department of Children and Families and the Probation Department. Do you think today’s political climate is more receptive to an independent candidate running for governor?
People are definitely more receptive. Voters are frustrated right now, and it’s hard to decipher what the true priorities of the state are. The cost of living is skyrocketing, driven by increased prices monopolistic hospital systems charge for health care. Meanwhile, schools aren’t being funded properly, seniors struggle to afford homes and care, and veterans are homeless. My goal is to help our communities grow and thrive. The recent corruption is troubling. The public’s confidence in government is eroding, and it’s bad because we need our government perhaps more than ever to help solve these problems.
How does your Judaism affect your politics and political choices?
I think Judaism is a religion that constantly challenges you to really think about everything—so much of it has to do with questioning every story, every lesson and every event. And even with all that questioning, it’s a religion of enduring faith. In that sense, it’s always been an important part of my life. Looking back on my own family’s history, my grandfather left the Ukraine at 14 because of a pogrom in which much of his family was killed. He ended up in Cuba, alone, and eventually found his way to Venezuela. He lived until he was 101, and he always wanted to make sure his sons ended up in America. We have so much to be thankful for, and I feel my generation has an obligation to fix things that aren’t right in this country so the faith in our country as that kind of place can continue.
You come from a prominent Jewish family. Your mother is a past president of Hadassah and your brother co-created the FOX TV hit “Glee.” Who would win in tag team wrestling: the Emanuel brothers or the Falchuk brothers?
The Falchuk brothers would win! We have youth and lack of ties to the two-party system. We also watched a ton of professional wrestling when we were kids and know a variety of moves. We would defeat the Emanuel brothers and go on to become tag team champions of the world!
Four Questions is a weekly interview column featuring interesting people connected with the Greater Boston Jewish community. Find past columns here. Have an idea of someone we should interview? Email Molly!