I am not voting today, and things more than likely will be over by the time I get to vote (May sometime), but I thought I should at least note where I stand. I intend to vote for the unity pony.
I wish Dodd had been given more of a chance, but that just didn’t happen. Absent that, I am left with Clinton and Obama as my only realistic choices. Either one (and in the case of Clinton, this is truly depressing for me to state) will be a radical improvement from Bush, and either one will be better than the GOP candidate that is upchucked from the bowels of the “conservative” base. Both have very similar positions on many issues.
So why am I then choosing Obama? A number of reasons, starting with why I am not voting for Clinton, and don’t think you should, either:
1.) Over the past few weeks I have grown weary of the Clintons, and weary really is the right term. They are tiring to the bone. Everything is calculated, nothing is what it seems to be, and they are just too cynical for even me (despite my cardinal sin the past few years being a resounding lack of cynicism and skepticism). Every time I hear her name, every time I hear her voice, I think to myself- “God, I am so sick of the fucking Clintons.” It may be unfair to vote against Hillary because of the din created by her opposition, but I would be lying if I did not admit the role that has played in my decision making. I am just tired of the fuss, the noise, the animosity- I have no doubt the right wing will manage to make Obama public enemy #1 if he wins the nomination, but at least it will be something new. Everything with the Clintons is so recycled, so old, so tawdry. Yes, Hillary, I do need a change.
2.) There is nothing in the Clinton past that makes me believe they will end the war in Iraq, and additionally, I can see her engaging in military adventurism just to prove she is strong on defense.
3.) I don’t see her rolling back (at least willingly) the executive over-reaches of the past 8 years.
4.) I don’t trust her. I just don’t. Flame me all you want, but I think she has the capacity and willingness to be just as secretive as the Bush administration.
5.) I don’t like the company she keeps. Mark Penn, anyone?
Why then, choose Obama?
1.) I trust his judgement. He has been using this to great effect during the campaign, but it is true- on one of the most important foreign policy judgements of my lifetime, Obama was right. This war has been a disaster, should never have been launched, the junior Senator was right, Hillary was wrong, I was wrong.
2.) I like his wife. A lot. Tough, no nonsense, can relate, yet still charming and witty and beautiful. Another point towards Obama’s judgement. Hillary, on the other hand, chose Bill.
3.) I like the company he keeps- his list of national security/foreign policy advisors includes a group of clear-thinking, pragmatic folks.
4.) I like the impact he has on people. I am a cynical bastard, but I really have enjoyed the fact that he really does seem to inspire people. I have somehow been immune to his charms (and mocked them), but I am not oblivious to the impact he has had on others. That is a good thing.
5.) He is young, and from a new generation. It is time for new blood.
So there you have it. Some rational reasons, some irrational reasons, but all reasons nonetheless. I intend to support Obama for the nomination, and should he lose, I will hold my nose and vote for Hillary.