I’ve been relatively undecided about whom to vote for in Feb. 5 primary–and for the first time EVAH! I actually get to decide who the Democratic nominee will be. I was leaning towards Edwards. Since 2004, he was the most liberal candidate on most issues, even though his political record before then was spotty (I think that of all ‘big three’ Dems; why everyone was saying how strong the Democratic field was still mystifies me). Now, that Edwards is out, I plan on voting for Obama. Here’s why:
- Obama is far less hawkish than Clinton. In retrospect, I don’t think Clinton voted against her better judgment when he supported the Iraqi Clusterfuck: she actually believes that neocon crap. Obama is more likely to end the Iraqi Occupation, which we simply can’t afford, both in terms of lives and money. I also think Obama is less likely to do something really stupid in foreign policy than Clinton is.
- Related to the previous point, I think a candidate who can actually run as a candidate who opposed the war will do better than one who can’t.
- Of these two, I think Obama does less damage to the downticket candidates (although Edwards would have been far better than either of them).
- On the other hand, Clinton is slightly better than Obama on economic issues. From what I’ve been able to gather, his economic advisers are far more conservative than Clinton’s (which is saying something). And his rhetoric about Social Security is disturbing.
- Having said that, I think Clinton’s instincts are conservative–she is incredibly risk averse, and we need someone more dynamic than that.
- Obama is bringing out young voters; I think this will help downticket campaigns.
- Obama doesn’t have Mark Penn as an adviser, although it’s not clear if Obama will be good on labor issues.
- While all that optimism crap doesn’t play well with me because I’ve seen that before, a lot of voters appear to like it.
- The longer the Democratic primary continues, the longer we can delay the onset of Compulsive Centrist Disorder.
- The traditional media don’t hate Obama like the do Clinton (yet).
As you can see, this is hardly a ringing endorsement, but Obama gets my vote. Damn, I wish Edwards hadn’t left…