Why I'm Voting for Obama.
1. "I don't want to just end the war, I want to end the mind-set that got us into war in the first place." -Barack Obama
2. When Hillary Clinton voted to authorize the war on Iraq I was devastated. Millions of people all over the country knew that she voted for an unjust and unnecessary war. The fact that she said "If I knew what I knew then I never would have voted to authorize the use of force," is exactly right: If she knew that her vote for war would become a massive political liability she would have voted differently. That's how she has approached so many issues as a senator, and especially when it comes to the military. Twenty-three senators voted against that resolution and she clearly showed the world one of two things:
a: She is hawkish and entirely too willing to resort to military force.
b: She is calculating and willing to vote against what she knows is right as a political maneuver even when thousands of lives and livelihoods hang in the balance.
And while I honestly don't know which one she exhibited, either one of those two characteristics definitively disqualify her for my support.
3. Obama is an inspiration to me. His language and his integrity have changed the whole atmosphere of the primaries and I believe that as president his way of being and speaking will entirely alter what is possible for our government. Just like JFK, maybe he won't be an extraordinary policy maker (though his experience shows much more promise than JFK's). But just like JFK I think he will create an atmosphere of hope and possibility in which radical change on the ground level will be possible in our country and in the world. An Obama presidency will vastly change the Global perception of America, and a Clinton presidency will not.
4. Obama unlike Hillary seems abundantly willing to say what he believes and what is right even when it is unpopular. Hillary started sounding that way in the last debate clearly following Obama's lead, but from what I know of her senate record it was a very new development in her rhetoric. From his support for Driver's Lisences for undocumented immigrants to his expressed willingness to talk to embattled foreign dictators. From his straight talk about taxes even to his stance on health care, he tells the truth plain and simple.
5. Hillary's health care plan is universal. The problem is that I don't believe Hillary has the kind of leadership and integrity to make her plan happen. Again I believe that Obama has that strength. I believe that Obama has considered more deeply the current political landscape and come up with a plan that is more viable, and is a powerful and imperative step towards universal coverage. This for me is the main reason Democrats are hung up on Hillary. Because they are focusing on positions rather than interests. Hillary's policy solution is more enticing to democrats but really Obama is who promises to start a conversation about interests on both sides of the aisle, which is the only way to pass health care reform. Both of their plans are campaign promises and I believe that choosing a candidate based on their promises is an error. I want to support a candidate who I believe will have the greatest capacity to make change and be change.
6. Obama said it best: Hillary does have the experience to hit the ground running on day one. But it is just as important (and probably more important) to be right on day one. To put the interests of humanity and a commitment to honesty before your own political well being. Here is the video of that moment in the debate.
7. Hillary is an absolutely brilliant woman. Watching her debate is truly impressive. She is immensely knowledgeable and well spoken. If she were to win the nomination I would be happy to campaign like hell for her, and would be thrilled to have her in the White House. But it is overwhelmingly clear to me that an Obama presidency would usher this country into a very new and radically different era of governance. I hope that you agree and vote for change on Tuesday.
If you need to see what I mean I recommend watching Obama's Iowa acceptance speech or his speech on MLK day.