Monday, January 21, 2008

"None of the above" isn't an option

This is the moment you have been waiting for. The historic announcement, anxiously awaited with hushed anticipation, of my endorsement for President.

I've got to start out by saying that there is no candidate who is 100% to my liking.

But some are significantly better than others. There are several candidates who I seriously considered supporting, most notably Huckabee and Thompson.

Huckabee is an interesting candidate. His Christian principles appeal to me a lot, and the guy is very likeable, funny, and eloquent. But his policies on taxes, spending, crime, immigration, and foreign policy convince me that he is not the right person to lead our nation. He staked a lot on winning South Carolina, but couldn't pull it off. In addition, he has failed to attract voters from outside the evangelical Christian community, so I don't think that he could win the election.

Thompson, on the other hand, is a true blue conservative. His positions are spot-on, across the board. From taxes to immigration to foreign policy, I can't think of anyone better grounded in conservative principles of limited government and separation of powers. Unfortunately, I don't expect him to still be in the race by March 5 when Texans have our primary. He has yet to win a primary, or come close for that matter. I believe that people gave up on him too soon, and for all the wrong reasons, due largely to media influence. We criticized Bill Clinton for being too slick. Fred's downfall was not being slick enough.

There are also a number of candidates who I believe would be particularly harmful to elect President. At the top of that list, of course, would be the two Democrat candidates, Mrs. Bill Clinton and B. Hussein Obama. The good news is that I don't consider either of them to be electable. Neither one has any experience actually running anything. Both are real rookies with just a few years in the Senate, making them some of the least qualified candidates in recent history. Hillary points out that she spent 8 years in the White House. Yeah, well so did Clinton's pastry chef. Obama can't even claim proximity to executive leadership. Hillary is dearly beloved by those Democrat party loyalists who thought that Bill Clinton was god on earth. This may be a large enough block of voters to secure the nomination, but it won't carry her to victory in November. Among the general voting public, Hillary has a 51% negative rating. No one whose negatives were higher than 45 in January of election year has ever been elected President. So I really hope that the Democrats pick Hillary as their man.

Moving over to the "Republican" side, there are several candidates who I would strongly oppose in the primaries. If one of these candidates got the nomination I would hold my nose and vote for him, because any one of them would be better than Hillary. Rudy is a pro-abortion, pro-gun control New York liberal Republican. He did a good job as mayor of New York City, but I could not support him in the primaries. Fortunately, his candidacy seems to be self destructing.

John McCain, on the other hand, seems to be on the up-swing. I voted for McCain for Senate back when I lived in Arizona, but since then he has decided to chase after liberal votes. This has made him every Democrat's favorite Republican, but it makes us see him much as Democrats see Joe Lieberman. He always seems to be teaming up with liberal Democrats to undermine conservative principles in one way or another: infringing on free speech, blocking originalist judicial nominations, opposing tax cuts, granting amnesty to illegal immigrants, drinking the hysterical global warming alarmism Kool-Aid, opposing drilling for oil in ANWR, and the list goes on... McCain seems to be gaining traction, propelled by a fawning media and their myth that he is the only Republican who can beat Hillary.

The race for the GOP nomination seems to be coming down to a long, drawn-out battle of attrition, in which the outcome may not be clear until very late, possibly even until the convention. I find this to be delicious. The last thing I want is a coronation where the outcome is determined by New Hampshire and a few other early primary states. I expect that soon it will be clear that this is a fight for delegates between Mitt Romney and John McCain.

Which brings me down to my endorsement. As a matter of principle, I will support the most conservative viable candidate. There is no question in my mind that Mitt Romney is that man. His track record, both in the private sector and as governor of Massachusetts, indicates that he is capable both of winning the election and serving as an outstanding President. I am not bothered by the allegation that years ago he took a "pro-choice" position on abortion, because he clearly corrected that mistake a decade ago. His business experience and his economic policy indicate that he is more than up to the task of countering the Democrat's strategy of running on the economy. His track record proves that he will not appoint liberal activist judges, but will instead appoint judges who will stick to their duty of interpreting what the Constitution actually says. I even hold out some hope that he will bring some fiscal restraint to Washington. As the only candidate to use the term "War on Islamofascism" I believe that he understands the importance of defeating Islamic extremists who seek to murder and destroy in their quest to spread lawlessness and tyranny.

I hesitated to support Mitt Romney because he is a Mormon, and we have vast differences in what we believe about God and who Jesus Christ is. But I have come to recognize that we can disagree on that without it making him any less capable of being a great President.

So today I proudly announce that I support Mitt Romney for President of the United States.

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