Ramble On

Friday, November 2, 2012

I Voted for President Obama

I’ve held off on making a political post on the blog so far this election season.  But now that the campaigns are almost over, I wanted to take a moment to outline the reasons I’m supporting President Obama for reelection.

I’ll make no excuses or attempts to hide my alignment with the Democratic Party – I have voted straight ticket since 1984, Mary and I met during the 1992 Clinton campaign, I was part of a veterans caravan for the 2004 Kerry campaign and helped the campaign on GOTV that year, I wrote letters for Clark during the primaries that year, and then supported Obama in 2008.  Just look at the “inauguration” label here on the blog, and you’ll see the enthusiasm for the promise that accompanied that election.

And I still believe in those things today.  We have come a long way since 2008 – despite the hurdles and obstacles that have been in the way.  President Obama’s record is one that on the whole makes me very proud to be an American.  He led the way to the passage of the Affordable Care Act, for one thing, and saw us through to the end of the war in Iraq, for another.  And he made good on his promise to hunt down Bin Ladin.

So many things are left to do, so I believe he has earned four more years.

There are many contrasts with the Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, and his running mate, Paul Ryan.  It is hard for me to find even one single common philosophy within the campaign they’ve run:

  • Romney has said that he would consider voucherizing veterans benefits, breaking the sacred trust with those who have served, and Paul Ryan included major cuts to those programs in his famous budget.  
  • Under the Romney Ryan plan we’d see a similar approach taken with so many other programs that are important to our society, and they’ve given no outline of how to compensate for the abrupt turbulence their proposals would create in the economy and the country at large – turbulence that would likely eventually evolve into something even more catastrophic for our economy.
  • Romney said his first goal in office is to repeal Obamacare – a step backwards on healthcare, rather than forward, and something that really outlines the whole premise of the campaign as far as I can tell…some kind of retrospective look at where the country should be.
  • Some argue that Romney’s business experience will be a great benefit to the country as we continue to struggle with a slow recovery.  Among the real reasons for the slow recovery is the Republican demand that we take a different approach with this one than we have in the past – a position established by and led by Mitch McConnell and John Boehner.  But consider the truth of Romney’s success in business:  he financed the purchase of business with loans and credit, and then tore them apart, selling toff he valuable pieces for a profit, leaving creditors holding the bag.  Jobs were destroyed or sent overseas in the process, and where there were some created, they were often low or minimum wage with poor benefits. These aren't the jobs that will lead to a faster economic recovery.
  • During the campaign, he’s outlined an approach that would add $7 trillion to our deficit.  He can’t offer any plan for offsetting this, except for perhaps $1 trillion in savings from the cuts I discussed above.  This alludes to that track record he’s running on – add to the debt, cherry pick the things of value, and then leave somebody else holding the bag.  That somebody else…well that would be the middle class in this case.
One of my fellow bloggers describes himself as being “one standard deviation left of the mean.”  I have never considered myself a liberal, but rather, more of a moderate – something that probably meets the definition my friend has provided.  And that means positions like these are diametrically opposed to what I see as the right direction for the country.   We just can’t get there with a Romney presidency.

So two weeks ago I cast my vote to reelect the President.  I’ll be proudly cheering for him during the election reporting next Tuesday.  

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