< link rel="DCTERMS.isreplacedby" href="http://bokertov.typepad.com/ btb/" >

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Gore 2000
Bush 2004

My own letter to politicalunit@abcnews.com will not budge from the Outbox (hopefully, their mailbox is full and it's not some malfunction on my end), so out of frustration I thought I'd post these half a dozen or so from others. Enjoy.

Dear ABC News,

I saw your request here for emails from people who voted for Gore and are now going to vote for Bush. You claim not to have heard of any. Wow. Where you been? Just in my personal experience, I estimate 8-10 face-to-face, and I estimate 30-40 people in discussions on blog comment threads over the past 6 months.

I voted for Clinton both times, don't regret it, voted for Gore in 2000, was very upset at the Florida voting dispute. I am feminist, pro-environment, pro-gay-rights, pro-choice, very civil libertarian and supportive of improving human rights around the globe. Fiscally I am moderately libertarian. I found Gore a good match in 2000, although he seems to have become fairly deranged since.

I will be voting for Bush this year, because the war on terror trumps all other issues right now, and Kerry is clueless (not to mention has no character or positive track record). Also I don't like Kerry's demagoguery on outsourcing. The candidate most in line with my political profile would be Leiberman, but the Dems didn't want him, so I am going with Bush.

Judith Weiss

* * * *

Because I believe the U.S. is now composed of September 10 people and September 12 people and George Bush AND Dick Cheney are men that will lead us where we need to go in this World War in which we are now engaged. I don’t have any interest in having a Commander In Chief who will make the decision to send my children to war (my son just got back to Germany from Iraq), only if the French tell him it’s okay to do so.

There are very many of us thinking Americans who believe that our country and way of life is under long-term, potentially fatal attack from Radical Islam and we are in a World War that we must win in order to preserve the U.S. and that John Kerry is not the man to lead us in that war. I’ve been unable to determine where John Kerry stands on any issue other than the issue of his own election.

My problem with John Kerry stem entirely from his voting record, which has been clearly against the military for his entire Senate career. Although I am the daughter of a deceased Vietnam veteran, I do not believe Kerry’s Vietnam service record should have been an issue in this campaign but since HE chose to make it one, he must therefore take the heat he’s getting from Vietnam Vets and Vets’ families.

While I do not support George Bush on many of his policies, my bottom line is that he is a man who will do what he says he’s going to do and I believe that is the kind of leader we need at this time in our history.


* * * *

Here's the text of what I wrote abc news:

I voted for Al Gore in 2000 in the state of Illinois, Cook county. I am voting for Bush this time around mainly for one reason, 9-11-01. We are at war with Muslim Extremists, and I support the President in the actions he has taken since that fateful day. This is not a time to be nuanced, thoughtful, sensitive, or particularly worried about what our European “allies” think about our actions. It is a time to be strong, and take strong action against those that want to kill us simply because the majority of us are infidels. You can disagree with every one of President Bush’s domestic policies, as former Mayor of New York City Ed Koch does, and still vote for Bush because of the leadership he has displayed in this historic struggle. Tax-cuts, welfare, school vouchers, expanded medicare, universal healthcare, etc. won’t mean much if we have car bombs and other terrorist attacks going off daily and the US resembles the carnage that is Israel on a daily basis. No, I don’t have much faith in Mr. Kerry’s grand plan to get out of Iraq and the overall war on terror by involving France and Germany and the other nation’s who’s leaders secretly hope that he beats Bush. Nations do not make foreign policy based on personalities. It is clear that they do not have the stomach for the fighting in Iraq, and it is up to us to finish the job. Mr. Kerry’s record in the Senate strongly indicates that he is for multi-nationalism, a weak American military, and appeasement as evidenced by his postions both during the cold war and the first Gulf War. That is neither realistic nor what this nation needs at this critical time in our history. I’m sorry, but I just can’t go Democrat this time, I’m voting for Bush

* * * *

You're kidding, right? Not one Gore voter who is now voting Bush?

Well, here's your one. Feel free to count my wife as number two. But really, I can't imagine you guys have been truly looking and come up empty. I mean, have you considered asking Zell Miller?

Look, I know we're not the only ones. I'm not that atypical. I live in the suburbs, I have an undergraduate degree from a Catholic liberal arts university, I have two kids. And voting for George Bush is a no-brainer. Reasons:

  1. September 11. Predictable, I know. But this is when I said to myself, "Thank God George Bush is our president and not Al Gore." Keep in mind this was before Gore went into cuckoo-land. Bush isn't going to hedge with terrorists. He isn't going to play nicey with countries that support them just because they have a seat at the UN (unlike our poor friends from Europe who are getting the run-around from Iran). He wants results, not a maintenance of appearances. We all know that Kerry has no intention of being a leader against terrorism. His obeisance is to the "international community," to "consensus," and to an appearance of peace. It is not to security. The smoke and mirrors of the convention couldn't cloud over what comes out of his own lips.
  2. Integrity. Democrats will only admit this when it serves their purposes, but deep down they know it's true: George W. Bush governs by his principles and he sticks to them. Sure, in a political season there's plenty of opportunism and rhetoric. But the policies of Bush--from anti-terrorism to immigration to tax cuts to education--come from his fundamental beliefs, not from pure political triangulation. They aren't crazy fundie religious beliefs, either; they're just common American values. I thought Gore was the same way when I voted for him. But given his post-2000 decline, I think it's clear that there was a deep instability in his values. Kerry, meanwhile, can't even summon up the kind of mask that Gore had. His values are groundless, fleeting, and may as well be non-existent because he has no interest in expressing them publically. I may not agree with every step Bush takes, but I trust that he has a compass that's taking him somewhere. Kerry's groundlessness begins right at the root of his personality: he's a sham Catholic who can't stand up against the political demands of his party to defend even one important principle of the religion to which he claims to adhere.
  3. Fiscal responsibility. I don't mind paying taxes. I don't mind my government spending my money on things of value, even abstract value. I want it to support the arts. I certainly want it to have the best weapons. All I ask is that it is accountable to someone besides itself. I don't know if Bush's private social security accounts will work. But Kerry and the Democrats won't even entertain the idea merely because they want to protect the existing bureaucracy and keep the money safely in government hands. Bureaucracy is not what I pay for; results are. Same with schools. If John Kerry really wanted to improve education in this country he wouldn't be pandering to the bureaucracy that's been failing miserably for decades and has no plan for improvement besides "more money please." Does Bush's deficit annoy me? Sure. But his priorities for where to take the money from and where to put it are far better than, say, Tom Dacshle's. Or John Kerry's. Again, I used to think the Democrats had the best sense of balance between big and small government. But Kerry's unthinking fealty to government programs--especially ones that don't work--is crippling. When Democrats can't even field a candidate with the political courage of Bill Clinton, then I'm going to abandon their spineless party and so are a lot of people.

I probably sound too harsh and too decisive to be someone whose political affiliation changed over the course of the last four years. But a lot has changed in those four years. The strength of my words here don't reflect the strength of any party loyalty, only the strength of my basic values and my desire for a good life. I think you'll find a lot of Americans share those same values and that same desire. So I think you'll also find--if you really bother looking--that a lot of them will be voting with me.

Look, I'm just a schmoe who can't even afford the $25 to register with the National Journal, so far be it from me to question their expert analysis. The election may indeed be beginning to favor the challenger... Too bad there is no challenger.

Chris Floyd
Broomfield, Colorado

* * * *

Gore voters mugged by 9/11
By: Sissy Willis

I immediately fired off a note to The Note, calling their attention to the case of one Stewart Johnson, a Brooklyn portfolio manager at a Manhattan financial services firm quoted in Mark Wallace's recent New York Times article, For Red-State Visitors, a Touch of Kerry Blue, where the life-long Democrat mugged by reality spilled his heart out:

"The change for me started post-9/11," Mr. Johnson said of his political shift. "The Democratic Party has just totally changed. They've gone from icons like F.D.R. to Michael Moore. How far can you fall?"