By Carol McIntire
October 30, 2012
Carrie Tabler is no stranger to Presidential elections or the political process
The 85-year-old Leopard Rd., Malvern resident has voted in the last 15 Presidential elections. Her first was in 1948 when incumbent President Harry S. Truman defeated Thomas E. Dewey. She has voted in every election since.
“It’s important that people get out and vote,” she said Friday sitting on the coach of her home. “I tell all my family, vote, vote, vote! There are so many people who don’t care and that is wrong. It’s our right, we should all vote. I’ve had three heart attacks and I still vote. Last election I went to Minerva and voted with my two sons.”
This year, due to health reasons, she plans to cast an absentee ballot. “I talked to the people at the Board of Elections in Carroll County and they are supposed to send me a ballot,” she said.
Tabler is especially proud of her collection of photos of U.S. Presidents. “I have one of each,” she said. “I got one of Obama (she refers to President Barack Obama simply as “Obama”) when he was elected and now if Romney (Mitt) wins, I need to get one of him. It doesn’t matter to me if they are a Republican or Democrat, I get a picture of each one of them.”
She keeps most of the pictures tucked safely away in her family Bible, but a few are framed. She quickly produces pictures of Bill Clinton, John F. Kennedy and “Obama” from her bedroom. “The Bible is too heavy for me to carry down here to show you the others,” she admitted pointing to steps that lead to the second story of her home, “but they are in there.”
She keeps the pictures as her own record of history. “It’s history, our history,” she stated. “We need to document it and tell our grandchildren about it.”
Her memories of elections and campaigning go back to the days of the Great Depression. “I lived through the depression…was born in 1927,” she proudly states. “Lord, that was some tough times.”
She remembers her father, James Mayle, being involved in political campaigns in those days.
“Daddy couldn’t read, write or drive a car, but he was well known in the community,” she recalled. “The politicians would give him a driver, pints and fifths of whiskey and dollars. They would drive him around and he would offer people either a dollar or a pint or fifth of whiskey for their vote.”
Many years later when Carrie was helping clean her mother’s house, she came across boxes in the closet that were filled with bottles of whiskey. “After the election, they let the people of campaigned for them to keep the whiskey,” she said. “I remember mom telling me us to ignore the stuff in the closet, but I knew where it came from.”
She says elections have changed over the years.
“Back then you went to the courthouse to find out who won. There wasn’t any TV to give you the results like today.
“Daddy was a Democrat,” she said, “but he never told us how to vote. We were allowed to decide that on our own. One of 11 children, she says all seven of her brothers voted like her dad. “Not me, “she said. “I can vote either way and have been known to do so.”
She keeps her satellite TV turned to the news channel and can tell you about each Presidential candidate and their platform.
“I’ve been listening and watching TV,” she said. “I’d like to tell both of them a few things about how to run the country. We have too many government programs. People need to work for themselves. Go until they can’t go no more and take of themselves and their own families, not rely on the government to take care of them.”
When talk turned to which candidate she favored or who she planned to vote for, Carrie kindly declined to answer the question.
“All I’m going to say is I’m going to vote cause if you don’t vote you can’t complain.”