I was a Republican until my 20s.
My political views changed dramatically over the next decade as I learned to embrace a wide range of progressive views.
In fact, I began as a libertarian.
I grew up in a conservative household in a small town in North Carolina, where my father worked as a state representative and my mother was a teacher.
My first political awakening came in middle school, when I decided to get a college degree in political science and politics.
I joined the Peace Corps and served in a number of Peace Corps posts around the world, including Afghanistan, Liberia, Nepal, and Bangladesh.
I spent the next six years living and working in different parts of the world while also studying for a master’s degree in public policy.
I was in my early 20s when I became a conservative.
But I quickly learned to be a liberal Democrat.
After working as a journalist for the San Francisco Chronicle, I left to pursue my own political career, which is now at the heart of my book, which I’m calling “I’m a Republican, but I’m a liberal Democratic.”
In my early twenties, I had a chance encounter with one of the first liberal Democrats in the country, Elizabeth Warren, who introduced me to the idea of voting for someone you disagree with.
After I won my first term in the U.S. Senate, I became convinced that the GOP had the better chance of governing the country.
But after the 2016 election, I thought I had made a mistake in my decision to vote for Donald Trump.
I felt so betrayed that the party had so consistently failed me, and I decided I would never vote for Trump again.
This decision was the catalyst that led me to run for office.
After months of hard work and a few sleepless nights, I am now the only Republican in the Senate, the only Democrat in the House, and the only member of the Republican majority in the White House.
I’ve never been more proud of who I am and the direction I’ve taken my party.
For more than 20 years, I’ve spent my time as a member of Congress working to make America a better place for all Americans, regardless of their political beliefs.
That’s why I’m writing this book.
I’m not afraid to be an outsider and to be my own person, and as a result, I’m willing to break with party orthodoxy to defend what I believe in and how I believe the country should be.
And in that spirit, I welcome your comments and suggestions.
If you want to read more from Thoma, be sure to check out his blog, the Weekly Standard.