Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Values, Not Candidates

There's a disquieting trend in the Republican party of late. Several, actually. One is to nominate a pseudo-Republican like John McCain, who has proven his penchant for buddying up with enemies of conservative interests. His record on the Constitution isn't all that grand either; his McCain-Feingold Legislation (which the president was foolish enough to sign) severely bound the First Amendment with respect to elections. His position on the Second Amendment has been tedious; support for anti-gun legislation, and supports some assault weapons bans. McCain also supports federal funding of embryonic stem cell research, anti-global warming efforts and amnesty.

Granted, many of these positions lie amidst a sea of seemingly conservative stances, but in the best-case scenario, they demonstrate instability. Also disturbing is his inclination to work with members of the Left such as Ted Kennedy, Russ Feingold and so forth.

As bad as this trend may be, there far worse devilry afoot. Disgusted members of the party have a mind to "teach them a lesson" by voting Democrat and putting Hillary Clinton or Barak Obama in office. That will show them!

This is about as smart as kicking the door jamb because you stubbed your toe.

Conservatives are (should be) more about values than about any specific candidate. Any intellectually honest voter does not vote based on the letter "R" or "D" after a candidate's name. They have a range of issues (usually with a select few being very dear to them, such as gun rights or abortion or the environment are to me) and determine their candidate based on his or her positions.

That is why I also discourage personal comments about a candidate. Who cares how big Barak Obama's ears are, or how shrill Hillary's voice is, or how permed Mitt Romney's hair looks? If Hillary Clinton took better stances on the issues, she would get my vote. (Not now of course; a mid-stream shift from her could not be trusted.)

Tactics matter too, of course. Deception, underhandedness and fraud are seldom justifiable means for a given end, however noble.

If John McCain gets the nomination, I cannot see myself stamping my personal seal of approval by his name on election day. But I would not, for one moment, consider putting my name to the likes of Hillary Clinton.

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