February 5, 2008

Obama on Super Tuesday

Super Tuesday is upon us, and that means voting in primaries for many Americans across the nation, now including Massachusetts.

I cast my vote for Obama. Obama and Clinton are very close in policies, but when I went through statements the candidates had made, I agreed more often with Barack Obama. (I used MyElectionChoices.com for some of my comparisons, because it was convenient). Especially on topics most important to me like education, net neutrality, campaign finance reform.

It was still a tough choice, however, because my research led me to believe that Hillary Clinton has expressed views similar to my own a lot more often in the realm of fiscal policy. It may be that Obama has not been as specific on the subject, but this worried me a bit.

But this only made it a difficult choice between two good candidates. Both candidates have mentioned autism in their plans for Americans with disabilities, with Hillary producing a very specific plan. Obama has consistently supported money for research into Autism spectrum disorders. (Pippa provided the link to this info)

I went with Obama because of two things which I think separate him apart.

I think he has a fresh view that will be more likely to produce new ideas. Experience can be a great boon to a candidate, but it can also make them too conservative. I think we're at a time when we need someone who might be willing to spend some political capital to undo the mess of the last 8 years. I think Obama would be more likely to spend that capital.

I also think the Obama would be less polarizing and be more likely to unite the country toward common goals using the values that Americans share, rather than dividing us with contentious wedge issues. We've experienced eight years of a president playing us off each other for his own presidential power, in many ways Obama promises to be a polar opposite. That's refreshing.

That's why Aces Full of Links is enthusiastically supporting Obama in this primary.

May the best candidate win.

Posted by James at February 5, 2008 11:46 AM
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Comments

This twenty minute long video comparison of Obama and Cliton by Lawrence Lessig is definitely worth the time and it goes by quickly.

Posted by: Mike at February 5, 2008 4:23 PM

Hey James, thanks for the link to MyElectionChoices. I tried that out (although I had already voted). Weirdly, it puts Clinton in first place for me, Obama in second, and McCain in third, which is exactly how I would have arranged them.

The surprise was that Romney was dead last. I would have put him ahead of Ron Paul and Huckabee at least.

Posted by: Chuck S. at February 5, 2008 4:55 PM

I cast my vote for Clinton. There was a great letter to the Globe this past Sunday that helped me in my decision:

***

MUCH HAS been said favorably comparing Barack Obama in 2008 to John F. Kennedy in 1960, trumpeting the politics of hope over lack of experience. As much as I admire JFK and fondly remember the days of Camelot, let us not forget the facts.

In early 1961, the newly inaugurated President Kennedy was persuaded by the CIA and military establishment that our government should support an invasion of Cuba by Cuban refugees. This led to the Bay of Pigs fiasco. Later that year, Kennedy went to a summit meeting in Vienna with Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev, where the Communist leader's assessment of the young Kennedy led to the Soviets' decision to send nuclear warheads to Cuba, precipitating the Cuban missile crisis. We proudly remember how Kennedy pulled the world back from the brink of nuclear war, but perhaps having a more experienced president in Vienna would have avoided the situation altogether. In addition, as much as we yearn for the days of Kennedy's liberal idealism, it took the master political tactician, Lyndon Johnson, to get the Civil Rights Bill, the Voting Rights Act, and Medicare enacted into law.

We live in a world as dangerous as that of 1960, and we have domestic concerns that will take strong leadership and political expertise to remedy. I am voting for Hillary Clinton on Tuesday.

PAUL S. ALPERT
Needham

****

I agree with him. It's the experience I want. Also, Bill Richardson endorsed her, and that means a lot to me. I would dearly love for her to choose him as a running mate.

Posted by: Patti M. at February 5, 2008 4:59 PM

I read today that the delegates in W. VA who were pledged to McCain threw their support to Huckleberry so that Romney wouldn't get any delegates (W. VA is a winner-take-all state).

To Romney, I say: HA HA!

Posted by: Patti M. at February 5, 2008 5:12 PM

That letter from the Globe seems like a reason not to vote for Kennedy. For someone to compare Obama to Kennedy, then explain what Kennedy did wrong does not strike me as a compelling argument!

Posted by: Julie at February 5, 2008 5:29 PM

Hindsight.

Posted by: Patti M. at February 5, 2008 5:46 PM

I don't remember having a nuclear war, so I think Kennedy did pretty well there.

In any case, I have to agree with what Julie said.

That said, I'll repeat what I have said in the past: Hillary would make an excellent president. I know many people who see her as a polarizing figure, but I disagree. I think she could get a lot of crossover support that would surprise people if McCain is the Republican nominee.

We'll see. Election season is certainly heating up.

Posted by: James at February 5, 2008 5:53 PM

Indeed it is, but wait until the polls close tonight and then let's see where we are. Obama has a lot of momentum, and though I'm supporting Hillary, I expect him to get the nomination.

Posted by: Chuck S. at February 5, 2008 6:04 PM

I wish it were otherwise but I don't expect Obama to get the nomination if current trends continue. If she has a slight lead going into the convention the super delegates will push her over the top since they're already leaning her way. Super Tuesday may have been his last good chance to catch up to her.

Posted by: Mike at February 6, 2008 12:36 AM

Mike,

Actually Super Tuesday is where Obama is weakest. He's stronger when he can concentrate on only a few states and really build momentum there. He's also stronger in caucus states (given his history as a community organizer and his ability to inspire passion in his supporters).

Talking to folks from the Campaign the last couple of days, it seems like they were hoping for exactly what happened - an even split between the two candidates. That puts a nail in the coffin of Hillary's inevitability, and gives him a chance to play to his strengths in the upcoming races while her fundraising dries up (most of her donors are maxed out, most of his are not).

In a lot of ways a long nominating contest is good for the party because it excites the Democratic base in later states, even "red states". We're seeing a lot of people who've never voted before coming out this time, and if they come out for a primary they'll definitely come out for the general. They'll also be more likely to volunteer and donate money. If the Republican race is over in two weeks, sure it means McCain isn't suffering attacks from his own party, but it also means folks in states like Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Oregon aren't getting all excited about the guy either.

Posted by: David Grenier at February 6, 2008 12:24 PM

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