Wow…hard to believe all the campaigning is over. It was a drama-filled 2008 for sure. McCain rises from nowhere in primaries, Obama and Clinton battle till the convention, the Palin selection, Joe the plumber. Crazy…
Well first of all, I was anticipating staying up late last night, but thank goodness it was over early. I caught the end of the Rockets vs. Celtics game and hit the sack around 10pm!
More seriously, looking back there are several great things that I see from this election. Here are my thoughts:
Why I voted for McCain
For me, speeches and promises in a campaign don’t count for much. I’m really of the opinion that a politician will say virtually anything for a vote…the thirst for power is very strong. As my seasoned government professor at Harding said, “once a politician is elected to office his number one priority is to…get re-elected.” With that in mind, I looked at McCain’s record and past actions and compared them to Obama’s record and past actions. Neither one thrilled me, but if you look at McCain’s actions in the Senate, he does get stuff done and he usually works in the middle. I thought he would have done a decent job as president and nominated good qualified judges and justices (my #1 issue).
The dude is a motivator…I’ve never seen so many people name-dropping with Obama (I just sat through a marketing meeting and one attendee talked about how her “friend Obama” sent her emails yesterday). Tracy McGrady even wore Obama sneakers during the game last night! I’m glad he inspried so many folks. Let me be clear: It is a great thing that our country has elected an African-American president. I hope we elect many more minorities in the future…so many that we won’t even consider race or skin color an issue. Anyone who is qualified to lead should have every opportunity to run and win the presidency, or any other office for that matter. It is also a great thing that so many people voted this year. Every citizen should vote (once) in the election (I won’t start an electoral college discussion). I hope voter registration continues to climb in the years ahead.
Obama has every chance of being a superb president, and I hope that’s the case. I’ll pray for him, as we all should. I will assume that his motives are pure and he has the best intentions in mind when governing. I’m not scared about the future (alas, some of my Facebook friends appear to be).
I mentioned earlier about how I don’t put much value into campaign speeches and pre-election talk. There are two things I hope Obama doesn’t do that he’s said he will.
First of all, he said the first thing he would do as President is sign the Freedom of Choice Act. I hope he reconsiders that…surely there are more important issues right now (energy, the economy, the war, a college football playoff system, etc.).
Secondly, he has said he will nominate judges who “(have) the empathy, to recognize what it’s like to be a young teenage mom. The empathy to understand what it’s like to be poor, or African-American, or gay, or disabled, or old…”. Now I know he’s like a constitutional law professor or something, but to me that sounds like a good list of attributes for a legislator, not a surpreme court justice. When I read this, I just envisioned a poor disabled old lady standing in front of the supreme court, and a justice replying with “Darling, the law isn’t on your side, but I’m so full of empathy that I’m going to side with you anyways”. I’m not sure a Supreme Court justice is supposed to be empathetic, but rather objective. I’d rather have justices that say “Sweetheart, your case is really compelling, but I’m afraid you’re going to have to go talk to your representative and get the law changed. I have to interpret the law objectively, even though your situation brings me to tears.”
So there you go…those are my thoughts, and hopefully I didn’t say anything that I’ll regret later. Feel free to rip me apart in the comments. And God bless the World!