Why Conservatives Should Vote Against John McCain

Twenty-eight years ago, America elected the greatest president in my lifetime, and in the lifetime of anyone reading this blog.

Ronald Reagan changed the world. Hope was in the air in the 1980s—a sense of renewal, a sense that the present was bright and the future brighter. His policies were rooted in truth and in hope, and because of that they worked. They were rooted in the understanding that people will soar when they are not stifled by oppressive government-—be it the pervasive, evil oppression of Godless communism, or the relatively lesser, misguided oppression of high taxes and big bureaucracy. They were rooted in what Ronald Reagan believed, and what he reminded us that we believed too. Because Reagan’s policies worked, life improved, in America, and around the globe. And because Reagan’s exuberant optimism never failed, we believed that it would just get better and better. Through his strength and his success, he reshaped the world.

But as great as he was, Reagan was merely a man, and men make mistakes. Often, great men make great mistakes.

The biggest political mistake of Ronald Reagan’s life was the selection of George Bush as his running mate. An establishment liberal, Bush was the antithesis of Reagan. But because he was perceived as Reagan’s heir, Bush was elected president 19 years ago. And, to its great detriment, the Republican Party has been cast in his image, not Ronald Reagan’s, ever since.

And that brings us to where we are today, a dark day when the Republican presidential nominee is a philosophical vacuum, a conservative of convenience, and something of a flake.

John McCain is a disgrace to the party of Reagan. His namesake legislation tramples freedom of political speech, the cornerstone of republican government. Because he does not demonstrate a sliver of Constitutional fidelity, there is no reason to expect him to be able to recognize, much less appoint, judges who do. His amnesty legislation undermines the Rule of Law. His opposition to drilling in ANWR shows a resistance to commonsense policy that could reduce both energy prices and American dependence of foreign oil. His support for federal funding of stem-cell research belies his claim of a pro-life record (and expands big government). His understanding of economics is embarrassing; as he points fingers at the bogeymen du jour–Wall Street greed, the pharmaceutical industry, oil companies–he says nothing that reflects any textured understanding of the market economy, how it works, why it is the best means of creating prosperity. Instead, he backed Bush XLIII’s outrageous, unpopular bail-outflakily suspending his campaign to rush to Washington to accomplish, well, nothing–and even wants to go further, asking the taxpayers to help keep irresponsible borrowers in homes they never should have bought.

But won’t Barack Obama be worse? In the short term, yes. But the next few years are going to be bad no matter which of the two leading proponents of big government is elected a week from today, especially since, thanks to the Bush-led destruction of the Republican “brand”, the liberal Democrats are likely to gain seats in both houses of Congress. And since Sen. McCain is on the Democrats’ side so often, he’s likely to go along with many of their prosperity-crushing policies. In the cases when he doesn’t, they may well have the votes to override his veto.

If McCain is president, thanks to conservative votes, it will be McCain, and his fellow anti-conservatives–both those philosophically opposed to small government and those so philosophically unmoored that they have no convictions at all except power–who continue to shape the right-of-center side of America’s political conversation. And that will mean continuing to fight destructive Democrat policies with destructive Democrat-lite policies.

Rejecting McCain, on the other hand, gives us time and space and, most of all, integrity, to recover the principles that made Ronald Reagan the most successful president in modern times, and, in so doing, repair the conservative cause.

My fellow conservatives, please vote for America’s long-term prosperity. Please vote for the recovery of conservative principles. Please vote for hope. Please vote against John McCain.

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15 thoughts on “Why Conservatives Should Vote Against John McCain

  1. I’m with you Leslie. A vote for McCain or Obama is vote to maintain the status quo. I left the Republican Party on May 1st, 2008 to join the Constitution Party. I’m voting for Chuck Baldwin in this election. Baldwin is on the ballot in 37 states and is an officially recognized as a write-in candidate in 11 states (Votes for Baldwin will count in these states). The only citizens who will not be able to vote for Baldwin in this election are those residing in North Carolina, Oklahoma, and D.C.

    Remember that our Constitution is what secures our liberty and our property, and that Chuck Baldwin is the only candidate who actually will “preserve, protect and defend” that Constitution.

    Unless We the People remember those principles and vote for Baldwin, our constitutional republic will soon be finished – no matter which of the two major party candidates might win.

    In his message on Constitution Day (September 17th) this year, Chuck Baldwin pointed out the way back to constitutional government [see attached e-mail for the entire message]:

    “It is the responsibility of a free people jealously to guard the principles upon which their liberties are predicated. For citizens of these United States, the principles that duly protect our liberties are contained in the U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights, and Declaration of Independence. Therefore, it is incumbent upon every American to studiously familiarize himself with these documents.

    “Furthermore, it is the duty of every American to stubbornly hold their elected representative, at every level of government, accountable to his or her oath to the Constitution. The U.S. Constitution is the contract that every civil magistrate makes with ‘We the People.’ Failure of an elected representative to fulfill that oath to the Constitution should be met with swift and certain rejection by the people at the polls. Nothing else should matter. Republican or Democrat, man or woman, black or white, believer or unbeliever: it is the responsibility of every civil magistrate to submit to the restrictions and instructions of the Constitution.”

    Ballot information for Chuck Baldwin in this election is here:

  2. I disagree with you completely. McCain is an honorable man and Sarah Palin is a good woman. Both are patriots who love this country and will do what is right for this country. Both believe in family values, not community values, where groups are afforded privileges due to their inferiorities.

    In a family, all members are individuals with equal rights and equal protection under the law. In a communistic, socialistic, humanistic view of politics, groups are allowed to trample the rights of others. Always have the indolent and idle demand that government take from the industrious and productive.

    As imperfect as you might view McCain or Palin, Obama is a plant for the social radical arm, that now controls our media, our schools and most of our government. They have lied, they have cheated, they have misrepresented all the America and Americans stand for and they are a disgrace.

    Obama is an arrogant, narcissist, who refuses to release all the documents of his past that show us who he really is. He refuses to show a real birth certificate which means he is hiding something. We are being bamboozled, manipulated and we will pray a heavy price if we do not vote in the man of destiny, the POW who should have died a dozen deaths at the hands of the most evil captors, but who endured and lived to rise to Leader of the Free World.

    Don’t waste your vote on election day, tell the liberal lying media and the radicals in our colleges that we won’t be fooled again. We will choose a leader that is tested, and who running mate has more executive experience than Obama bin Biden, and more understanding of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness…who knows what this country means, that it is still for the people, of the people and by the people.

    Please ask God to be your Guide, and vote your deepest convictions and highest values. Vote Republican, for a republic is what we have and a Republic is what we should keep.

  3. While I agree with everything you said about the GOP and McCain, I would follow your lead if we didn’t live in a post 9/11 world. The decision comes down to supporting bad or supporting suicide. I’ll take bad.

    The silver lining of an Obama Presidency may be a repeat of 1979 and the country craving another Reagan Revolution. Having 2 young children, I can’t chance fighting the Islamic-fundamentalists in the streets of my hometown. That is how much I fear Obama.

  4. Doug, the difference here is that this characterization of Obama is based on what he actually believes, as stated by him (see: the 2001 radio show) and events that have already taken place (e.g. the use of thugs to intimidate his opponents, the public smearing of Joe the Plumber pour encourager les autres).

    Is it still paranoia when they really are out to get you?

  5. Leslie Carbone for 2008! (Hey, she is more intelligent than ALL the rest of them… and she’s waaaaaaaaaaaaay better than Sarah Palin… in every way.

  6. Leslie,

    We agree on many things, but not this.

    The loss of this war (and anyone besides McCain, including the unnamed candidate for whom you will vote, will lose the war) is a price I cannot pay.

  7. Erbo,

    Have you ever given thought to the fact that the right is expressing the same exaggerated fears about Barack Obama — right down to the idea that he’ll use the power of the state to supress dissent and cancel elections — that the far-left expressed about George W. Bush ?

  8. So, instead of electing a flawed conservative, we should let an out-and-out Communist occupy the White House? If that happens…what will we do when Obama finds himself “unwilling to risk another election” a few years down the road?

    Time to reread Sinclair Lewis’ It Can’t Happen Here. This is the closest we’ve ever come to the events of that book that I can recall.

  9. Great article. I’ll be making the same move as you with my vote.. and whole-heartedly disagree with chuck’s comment: “it is simply illogical to do anything else as a conservative than vote for McCain.” Simply put – you’re wrong, Chuck. Voting for the ‘lesser of two evils’ is still choosing evil… And is one of many factors that got us into the mess of each party deteriorating to the point they are both at now.

  10. I am not a fan of McCain either but I simply have to disagree with you. A vote for anyone else is a vote for Obama. You can tell yourself otherwise but it is still true. The reality is that McCain is a half of a conservative, but which is better, half a conservative or the most liberal presidential candidate ever? I sympathize with you and truly do respect your opinion, I have a hard time disagreeing with it, but it is simply illogical to do anything else as a conservative than vote for McCain.

  11. If you live in a state that allows presidential write-ins, you’re certainly welcome to vote for me. I am planning to vote for a “third-party” candidate. I would never counsel voting for Barack Obama.

  12. I can’t tell you how many arguments I’ve been in with 0bamabots who think Bush is the ne plus ultra of conservatism, and that the current economic “crisis” is the end result of faithful adherence to conservative principles, when in fact nothing could be further from the truth.

    These arguments go on, with the 0bamabots fully suckered by the “HopeChange” mantra into believing that even less conservatism, in the form of an 0bama autocracy, must therefore be the answer.

    You’re absolutely right that McCain doesn’t deserve my vote, but who does? May I have your permission to write your name in?

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