Posted by: brian | October 25, 2008

Could John McCain have gotten my vote?


Last spring, shortly after he had secured his position on the Republican ticket, I thought he had a chance. For all the jokes about his “maverickness,” he often did work to cross party lines and tried to do what he thought best, not just what his party told him to. Even though most of the time the two coincided, he wasn’t a slave to party ideology.

I was thinking the other day that the “old John McCain” might have been able to get my vote. But the “new John McCain” is fitting all the stereotypes of the Republican party, and his selection of a whackjob for a running mate has made it worse. Now, supposedly, McCain wanted to put Joe Lieberman in the number 2 spot on the ticket, but this choice was deemed unwise by his advisors, because it would “alienate the base.” By “base,” I assume they meant “religious nutjobs who love their guns and don’t want to pay any taxes.”

But the more I thought about it, I thought, where would those people go, if McCain picked Lieberman? Would they vote for a Democrat? I don’t think so. I know people who vote based solely on whether there’s a (D) or (R) behind the name on ballot. Those people would grudginly vote for McCain/Lieberman, citing the “lesser of two evils” reason. And many independents would have been drawn to the prospect of a more centrist ticket. So instead of picking up only the die-hard right-wing by pandering to them, the GOP might have gotten enough support from the middle to put another Republican in the White House.

Yeah, it would have been another pair of old white guys running the show, but it would have represented a bigger shift than putting a woman or a black man in the office, if those two candidates fall more squarely into traditional party categories (and they do).

Am I excited about the prospect of an Obama presidency? Yeah, because he is an intelligent, well-spoken, charismatic person. But I’m also nervous about his lack of experience and how well he’ll handle the clusterfuck of a situation that the previous administration has led us into (though not wholly on its own; I think there’s ample blame to go around on both sides of the aisle). I also am somewhat concerned about the prospect of a Democrat President with an overwhelmingly Democrat-controlled Congress – when the Republicans controlled the whole thing, look where they put us. I’d prefer more balance in the power structure, and I think a McCain/Lieberman administration might have been able to provide that.



  1. I for the most part agree with you… I do not think that the experts in Obama’s wake are taken into thought to much though? It is the experts that a president has that makes or breaks a president, not the actual president…

  2. […] Palin fiasco was the thing that sunk him. The economic troubles didn’t help, but like I said before, if he’d gone with Lieberman, I would have given him a closer look, and I think a lot of […]

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