Vote/caucus today!

If you’re in a Super Tuesday state, remember to get out and vote and/or caucus (as appropriate to your state) today!

If you’re in Colorado, remember that your caucus doors open up at 6:30 pm – doors close at 7, although rules apparently state that if you show up late, you can vote in any business from the time you arrive forward. Since the presidential preference vote comes first, though, it’s best to be there when the doors open to make sure you get to caucus for your candidate.

Ok, so there’s the public service portion of this post.

Now here’s the biased bit.

I’m caucusing for Obama, and I feel pretty strongly about it. I was torn between Edwards and Obama, frankly, but Edwards stepping out of the race solved that.

Why am I endorsing Obama? (Oh, yeah, and I’m sure my endorsement is reaaaal important ;) )

There are two parts to it. The first is that I think Sen. Obama is an incredibly capable, straightforward and inspirational guy. I didn’t decide I liked Obama after a speech or some TV commercial – I used to listen to his weekly podcasts to his Illinois constituents on the way to work on the train and I thought they were considered, rational, and, most of all, right. Whether it was about foreign policy or domestic issues, this was a guy I could agree with.

And then the campaign started, and I am so impressed – and pleased – with how all sorts of people are getting involved, and how after these eight years of horror he has really presented a message of hope that people respond to. One can argue that it’s an abstract thing, but let me put it this way – people without hope become apathetic. And when people become apathetic, we get 8 years of George W. Bush, a ruined educational system, negative foreign credibility, war, no privacy, no accountability, etc. Without an engaged and hopeful populace, none of the rest of it matters.

But I also think it’s a ridiculous criticism to accuse Obama of being nothing but an inspirational speaker, which the Clinton campaign has strongly implied more than once. For a woman who is, quite frankly, running on her husband’s record and who furthermore voted for the Iraq war, the criticism rings a little hollow.

And I just want to say that his willingness to talk to our adversaries instead of this stupid policy of ignorance we’ve been following is a huge deal to me.

The second reason is, quite frankly, that I can’t under any circumstances vote for Hillary Clinton. Let me state something upfront – I was a huge Bill Clinton supporter in the 90′s. After 12 years of Reagan-Bush, it was hard to be otherwise, and he had charisma and energy that the country needed. And for the record, the 90′s under Clinton were the first years my family was able to prosper in my memory. I was ridiculously angry with Bill Clinton for the Lewinsky scandal – not so much for the blow job, but for walking right into the hands of right-wing folks who were just waiting for him to slip up and then, worst of all, lying about it. I figured the actual act was between him and Hillary, but that he was willing to do idiotic things after the fact that locked up the government and media for a year… that was really damned stupid. But I remained nonetheless a Bill Clinton supporter, politically speaking.

I am not part of the vast right-wing conspiracy.

But this isn’t about Bill, right? Well… the problem is this. Whenever it’s about the years of prosperity, Sen. Clinton talks about “we”. She includes her husband’s years in the White House in her “35 years of experience”. Fine. I don’t have a real problem with that, though it doesn’t really count in my book. Her experience arguement is pretty weak… But what it says is this – if you take credit for those 8 years, then you also take the liability that comes with them. And that makes you a huge liability for the Democrats in November.

Until recently, it was really only the electability thing that got to me. But then President Clinton decided he was going to get into the scrabble of politics again because he just couldn’t resist, and after South Carolina, I was truly disgusted. It was a reminder to me that we run a real risk of repeating that inability to move forward in politics due to real or imagined Clinton scandals if they become the first family again.

We simply can’t afford that, first woman candidate or not.

But my real objection to Sen. Clinton isn’t that – it just makes me think she’d be a bad candidate. My real objection to her are the votes on the Iraq War authorization and the Levin amendment.

“If I knew then what I know now”, my ass.

She has 35 years of leadership experience? I only have 35 years of breathing experience and I knew exactly what that vote meant, and was sickened to see Democrats support it at the time.

And the refusal to apologize is, I’m sorry, weakness. We’ve had 8 years of inability to say, “I made a mistake,” and this posturing has gotten us nowhere.

The word “change” has been so overused, but we have to have it.

And without hope and unity, there is no change.

End of my political blather. As a postscript, check this video I got sent today:

YouTube Preview Image

VOTE. Even if you disagree with me.

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