The Search for a Presidential Candidate: A Prologue

The Search for a Presidential Candidate: A Prologue

There are three things I want to be forthright about before I delve into my thoughts about the candidates.

Number I. I consider myself a Libertarian. I find that I am not quite as Libertarian as most of the Libertarians I know, and this frustrates both them and me. The likelihood, at any rate, of me voting for a True Blue Democrat or a Red Handed Republican is gone with yesterday, never to be seen again. My feeling thus far is that the Democratic party will not have any candidates to tempt me. I am, however, open to any new faces that come to the show.

Number II. About a year ago, I contemplated how to best use my vote in this election. I don’t want to waste a vote, you see? I hear so many Libertarians and mid-road voters say that to vote Third Party would basically be throwing a vote away. I want to be clear: I disagree with this sentiment wholeheartedly. Wasting a vote would be casting it for a man or woman whose character and policies contradict my own. So how do I spend my vote wisely, seeing as I only have one? I set a standard, that’s how. And what is that standard? For me, it is twofold.

First, it means that I’m not going to spend my support and vote on a mud-slinger. That’s right. The money that is wasted in this country on smear campaigns is ridiculous and offensive to the needs around the world. It offends every fiber of my being. So candidates who are spending money to disparage other candidates? Candidates who employ a name-calling, loudest-voice-wins-the-argument, bully tactic? I’m sorry, but how you speak of another human being tells others more about you than it does the other. Honestly, we’ve had enough of that nonsense in our governing offices.

Second, it means that when a candidate speaks, I’m listening for content and not advertisement. Listen, I understand. With seventeen candidates aching for the Republican party nomination, this first debate was a big deal; It was a defining moment, whereby many candidates were going to sink or swim. It was almost necessary to have a thirty-second blurb that you could revert to when you had a moment to speak, otherwise you may never have another moment to “sell yourself” to the voter. I get it. But don’t you think we’ve had enough of slogans and sales tactics? This nation doesn’t need the best price, the best deal, the newest model. We are seeking a Leader, not a Used Car Salesman. And for that matter, I’m not interested in promos and political promises. “This is why you need me in office” doesn’t cut it. “I’ll defund Planned Parenthood” is a vain promise or threat, depending on your stance. How about substance? Give us some meat and keep your dainties for when you’re entertaining the political elite.

Number III. I don’t often write about politics. Quite frankly, if there’s one sure way to scare off my three blog viewers, it’s to wax political (hm…wax political? Wax politic? Anyone know the proper way to say what I just attempted?). In fact, I’m not sure what is stirring in me that requires writing about it here, but it definitely does. Please understand that my words are, in no way, an attempt at persuasion: I value the society that allows men and women to freely think, speak, and disagree with one another. Neither are my words a vain endorsement: It is much too early in the presidential race to avow myself to any candidate. Again, I want to be absolutely clear about this fact: I am not a political blogger. I am not a political anything. I’m just me. I’m just a mid-thirties gal who is trying to be informed and involved in the issues facing this nation and this world. I know it’s almost cliché to say this, but I sincerely believe that we are living at a precarious moment in history. It’s time for Americans to be awake and aware of what is happening around them, not to simply throw themselves at the mercy of a candidate or a party or one solitary conviction. That’s right–I don’t think we’re at a place in our nation’s history where we can afford to vote solely the abortion issue. It’s time to expect more of men and women and accept less of the status quo.

If you’ve read this far and your head hasn’t exploded, I encourage you to stay tuned. Tomorrow morning, I will share my first blog about the Presidential Candidates.



To Vote or Not to Vote

That is the question.

There are some candidates in this election that I feel I could get behind ideologically. But this year more than ever before, I am struggling to find candidates I can support. In the past, it seemed alright to vote “the lesser of two evils.” Not this year.

The stakes are higher this election. The tension is greater. The need to elect public servants who will be a thorn in the paw of our overbearing government has been nagging me like the tick-tocking of a clock in the dead of night.

But who will do the dirty work? Who will be who they say they are and stand for what they say they stand for? It’s hard to tell.

My personal peeve this election season has been the money spent on attack ads. Maybe I’m naive. Maybe politics really is “a dirty business.” Maybe television and radio commercials (and billboards and fliers in the mail every day for the last four weeks) are absolutely necessary in order to one-up an opponent. But it has left me dissatisfied with almost all of the names I will be seeing on the ballot today.

Can we really accept this? In the age of instant (and free) internet publicity, with the wildfires that are (or can be) twitter and facebook and blogging, can we honestly justify spending millions (or billions) of dollars on advertisements?

In this economy, I would have gladly thrown my support fully behind a candidate who utilized the great curse of the internet. I would have gladly cheered for those who not only preached what I thought we needed to hear, but also ran campaigns that reflected those ideas. I would have gladly–and wholeheartedly–cast my vote today for anyone whose values trumped their need to disparage an opponent.

That’s what I thought this election was about: breaking the political mold that we’ve cast in America; running on principles and ideas rather than “look at how filthy my opponent is.” And there may be one or two names on my ballot that fit this bill. But by and large, I am just as dissatisfied with this election as I was the last…

And the one before that…


Yet, in honor of my freedom–and those who have spilled their lives and blood to secure and protect that freedom–I will decidedly cast my vote today. It is my duty…my responsibility…and my great honor as an American.

What about you? Are you off to the polls today?