Earlier this year when it was clear that Governor Mike Huckabee was not going to win the GOP nomination I was unsure about Senator John McCain.  I had areas of disagreement with him like embryonic stem cell research, the immigration reform law that he sponsored, McCain-Feingold, etc.  His checkered past with evangelicals also troubled me.  I still disagree with his position on those.

I was in a quandary.   I knew I would not under any circumstances vote for Senator Barack Obama.  A candidates position on abortion is paramount for me, while it isn’t the only issue I look at; a pro-choice position will disqualify a candidate for me.  There are numerous positions on which I disagree with Senator Obama: gay marriage, taxes, gun control, his being against increased drilling, the war on terror, his position of community and faith-based initiative (ignoring the 1964 Civil Rights Act which allows faith-based organizations to discriminate based on faith) and more.

At best I thought maybe I would vote for Senator McCain in opposition to Senator Obama.  I even entertained not voting at the top of the ballot or voting third party (though not sure who).  I appreciated his military service, his work towards ethics reform, and his desire to work across the aisle.  I just wasn’t sure if I could get to the point of publicly endorsing him and actively working toward getting him elected.

I am happy to announce that I am wholeheartedly endorsing Senator John McCain and Governor Sarah Palin.  I started to move in this direction after watching the Saddleback Civil Forum.  It reminded me of what I do hold in common with Senator McCain, but what finally cliched it for me was his choice of Governor Sarah Palin as his running mate.  I want to share why I think you should vote for McCain-Palin in November:

  • Experience – John McCain’s life has prepared him for leadership.  His military service, his years as a POW, his time in the U.S. House and Senate.  He has had a wide breadth of experience that will serve him well in the Oval Office.
  • Leadership Ability – He has made hard decisions as a Naval officer, as a POW when he turned down early release, in the Senate on several pieces of legislation – even if I didn’t agree with him on every single item I can see that each decision was principled.  Each decision was selfless because quite frankly some of those decisions cost him politically and he knew that they would.  His opponent voted present 140 times.  Obama hasn’t demonstrated the ability to make hard decisions unless they were politically expedient (leaving his church).  He also hasn’t authored a single piece of legislation while in the Senate.  I guess he’s been busy running for President.
  • National Security/Foreign Policy – He knows the military.  He knows warfare.  He is a competent leader.  He has the respect of the troops.  He was right on the surge in Iraq.  He knows the consequences to our security if we lose the War on Terror.  He knows we need to make sure that when we pull out of Iraq we leave it in a secure position.  He understands global conflicts – take for instance the Russia – Georgia conflict.  McCain had insight into the dynamics in play there.  It took Obama several days to get it right.  McCain had Vladmir Putin pegged when President Bush had him wrong.
  • Fiscal Responsibility – He is against wasteful spending in Washington, and he is against overspending.  He worked on earmark reform.  I didn’t agree with his original no vote on the Bush tax cuts, but I can understand his reasoning – spending was out of control.  He has said that he will veto earmarks and make the authors of them famous.  I love it!  He also said that he will not approve of us continuing to send money to countries that work against us.  His choice in Palin also augments this as she has a record in Alaska of cutting wasteful spending.
  • Ethics Reform – Both McCain and Palin have made a name for themselves in trying to bring reform to government.  Both have gone after corruption and unethical practices in the GOP.
  • Energy Policy – Both McCain and Palin know that we need to increase our drilling for oil in order to break our dependence on foreign oil.  They both see it as a national security issue.  They also are both committed to putting everything on the table – wind, solar, nuclear, natural gas, coal, etc.  Now if Governor Palin can just convince Senator McCain to drill in ANWR as well.
  • Taxes – McCain won’t raise taxes.  Obama will.  McCain wants to increase the child tax credit.  He wants to keep the tax rates low – not increase the top tax rate of 35% (nobody should have to pay more than that), maintain the capital gains tax, cut the corporate tax rate, and more.  Barack Obama has already said that he would raise taxes for the wealthy and on businesses.  Who do you think creates jobs?  Who do you think are the most philanthropic?  Does he really believe that the government (and this is just the federal government) deserves more than a third of a person’s salary?  Increases taxes will hurt our economy plain and simple and hurt those whom he claims he wants to help.  Plain and simple.  Jobs will be lost, charitable giving will decrease, and dependence on government aid will increase.
  • Education – While my co-contributor Eric will say that the federal government shouldn’t even be involved with this, and he is right.  Since they are and I don’t see that changing anytime soon I am supportive of Senator McCain’s position of school choice and home education.
  • Judges – He will not appoint judges that legislate from the bench.  He will appoint strict constructionist judges.  We need to end the judicial oligarchy that has taken hold.  The imbalance of power that we’ve seen in the Judicial Branch goes against the Founders’ intent.
  • Sanctity of Life –  He wants to see Roe v. Wade overturned.  He position on judges impacts this issue as well.  He also wants to find new ways to empower and strengthen the groups that work with unwed mothers in order to engage the abortion debate at a human level in order to “help build the consensus necessary to end abortion at the state level.”  Barack Obama is not committed to that.  John McCain also will promote adoption, and they have lead by example by being adoptive parents themselves.  Also in his pick of Governor Palin he has a running mate who is also committed to not only speaking out for the pro-life cause, but living it as well with their fifth child Trig who was diagnosed with Downs’ Syndrome prenatally.  Most of those babies who are diagnosed in the womb are aborted.  John McCain is also against human cloning, and the intentional creation of human embryos for research purposes.  He will strongly support funding for promising research that includes amniotic fluid and adult stem cell research, as well as, other types of research that doesn’t involve the use of human embryos.
  • Marriage – He believes marriage is between a man and a woman.  He will choose judges will not overturn existing law and subvert the rights of the people to decide this for themselves.  He has stated that he will support a Federal Marriage Amendment if federal courts overturn state law and state constitutional amendments.  Governor Palin also supports this.
  • 2nd Amendment – He doesn’t mind it if we cling to our guns.  Seriously this right protects all of the others.  Law abiding citizens should be allowed to bear arms, and not have to “give up their rights because of criminals – criminals who ignore gun control laws anyway.”

This is not exhaustive.  I encourage you to check out his issues page on his website.  It give much more detail on the above issues and more like technology, natural heritage, fighting crime, agriculture, veterans, immigration, health care, and more.

Please vote for McCain-Palin on November 4th.

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