Ok, I never do this, and I'm going to preface this by saying that I'm not a very political person. I don't follow party talking points and I don't vote party lines. While I'm registered Republican, I don't consider myself a Republican. I consider myself a Reaganite. For the record, I have been a supporter of John McCain for the last 8 years and am thrilled that I will finally have the opportunity to thank him for his lifetime of service to our country by casting a ballot for him for president.
That said, I have a few 'talking points' of my own to make about this coming election.
When I look at the state of our great nation, I know we need a change. There are many things wrong with our economy, our policies and yes, our politicians.
First and foremost, my one pet peeve about politics are the political parties. Why do we need these? Why do we have to have something that fosters an "us vs. them" mentality on every blessed topic? Why can't people run for office on personal merit rather than party talking points? Why?? George Washington himself was suspect of parties, realizing early on that they were more divisive than anything else. It serves absolutely no one to have this constant tug of war over everything from major policy changes to the smallest minutia of every day governing. Bipartisanship is a good thing, and I know that John McCain thinks this way as well...just witness his relationship with Joe Lieberman.
That brings me to my next point. How many of our elected officials are willing to stand up for what they believe in? Not a whole hell of a lot, to be sure. Regardless of their party affiliations, so many of the men and women we hire by voting into office are too worried about offending the base that they blindly follow party talking points, regardless of whether or not they are good for the constituency and the country. Joe Lieberman is an exception to the rule. He formed his own opinion on Iraq and followed thru on it, even at the expense of his party support and nomination for reelection. I can't have anything but respect for someone willing to lose everything in order to stay true to their own principles.
Now, changes in our policies and the economy are harder topics to discuss. Everyone has his or her own ideas on things. Some people are for gay marriage. Others dead set against it. Personally? I don't see what the big deal is. There are some gay couples who've been monogamous far longer than some straight couples. And who am I to judge? As the good book says, judge not, lest ye be judged. Abortion is a volatile topic as well. As a woman, I find myself to be pro choice. I don't know that I would ever have an abortion, but I want the ability to make that decision for myself, should I ever be in the position to have to make an agonizing choice like that. Economic policies, trade restrictions, taxes...major, major topics in this election year. I don't know much, but I do know one thing: making changes to most everything I've mentioned here would take an act of congress. Very little power has the president on his own (wow...how Yoda~like of me!)
Now, that brings me to John McCain. Yes, I like him. I have liked him for 8 years now. I like that he talks TO me, not AT me. I like that he can make a joke and take one too. I like that he's soft spoken and compassionate. I like that he doesn't care what party you subscribe to as long as you are willing to have an open mind and work together. I like that this is a man who has spent his entire life in service to his country, and has both the physical and emotional scars to prove it. I like that, despite what has happened to this man because of his service, he still believes, like Ronald Reagan did before him, that America is inherently good. That our country is the "shining city on the hill". I like that John McCain puts country first. I like that John McCain is proud to be an American.