As many of you know, or could guess, if the election were held tomorrow I’d be voting for John McCain. However I wouldn’t be pulling the lever with 100% conviction; like most people, I suspect, I have my doubts and questions about my man, and I see the appeal of the other guy.
I long ago gave up the idea of anything I say here changing anybody else’s mind, but I’m open to having my own reality altered. So here’s what I’d like to do now. Over the next few days I plan to lay out, in brief fashion, the factors and arguments that led me to where I stand today. Your job is to shoot holes in each (or to agree if you feel that way).
But please – try to stay on point. Let’s not let this drift into a wide-ranging argument. If I say I don’t like Obama because he has big feet, don’t say, “oh yeah, well McCain has hemorrhoids;” tell me why big feet are good, or why they don’t matter.
Here is factor Number 1.
I fully appreciate why many of you would not vote for any Republican for President. In fact, had Giuliani, Romney, Huckabee or Thompson won the GOP nomination I’d likely be voting for Obama. But the fact that McCain is running on that ticket matters very little to me.
First of all, the national parties are nearly meaningless today. Ever since the “reforms” of the ‘60s and ‘70s the parties are loose coalitions of people with similar (but not identical) views who vote together most of the time and watch each others’ backs when it is convenient. Most of the time, however, they are independent loose cannons.
Second, John McCain is despised by most of the Republican elite. He voted against them countless times in the Senate, drove the campaign reform bus, advocated immigration reforms that infuriated most of the party, was the key guy behind nailing Jack Abramoff, which deeply embarrassed the GOP, and he nearly picked Joe Lieberman, a New England Democrat without a home, as his running mate. Finally, he stood on the podium the other night and lambasted the current administration for failing the American public the past eight years. Some Republican.
In short, I’m voting for the man, and not the party, in full confidence that the party will wilt under the force of John McCain with an electoral mandate. Conversely, if I thought Barack Obama was one-in-the-same as the Democratic party he’d have no shot at getting my vote. I don’t want Nancy Pelosi running things any more than you (or I) want the religious right running things.
So, tell me I’m wrong.