Saturday, May 28, 2016

Race for the White House Volume 74

On this Memorial Day Weekend, it would be wise to spend some time thinking about all the Americans whom throughout the course of our history gave the ultimate sacrifice so we could live in freedom. Our democracy and system of elections is certainly part of that, and something that should never be taken for granted. I cannot help though but feel a sense of shame for the America of today presenting such a disappointing choice. It is said that a Presidential election is more than a contest, it is a mirror held up to the country. Those who died in service of their country throughout the years might not be proud of what we have become.

For many Americans, this is the "lesser of two evils" contest, as the country prepares for Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton vs. Donald John Trump. Some fanfare was made this past week of Trump formally clinching enough bound delegates to become the nominee on the first ballot and I will maintain that it is shameful that people in the Republican Party did not fight him more. Over the past couple of days, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, a former candidate who campaigned for a stretch against Trump on moral grounds, made clear that he was not happy with the situation, but that he had to support Trump against Clinton and would be happy to do whatever he was asked to do that in regard. This has disappointed many of his past supporters in the Never Trump camp. To be certain, I really wish Rubio were the presumptive nominee at this point, but I do not think his calculation at this point speaks too strongly of him. Some things are just too much to ask, and asking someone to vote for Donald Trump is definitely one of them. I realize what a difficult position this is for many in the GOP, but Jeb Bush was my first choice, and while he was not the right candidate for this cycle in regards to winning Republican votes, I am proud that he is standing on principle and not supporting Trump. The same can certainly be said for Mitt Romney, the candidate I supported initially in the two previous elections, and George W. Bush, whom I supported in the other two. I think I know how to pick the right people and their stands on Trump justify that for me.

As Trump continues to make headlines, with some polling results this past week not as good as the prior week, more civil unrest at his events, and by doing distasteful things, such as attacking New Mexico Republican Governor Susana Martinez in her state, just because she has not endorsed Trump and did not show up at his rally, it was also not a good week by any stretch for Hillary Clinton. The bad feelings between Clinton supporters and Bernie Sanders supporters continue to escalate (and with Sanders now going out of his way to try to defeat DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman-Schultz in her Florida Congressional primary due to his belief that she presiding over a rigged system designed to nominate Clinton).

While I certainly maintain the belief (perhaps hope) that Trump can never win a general election, there have to be numerous warning signs for Democrats about just how weak a candidate Clinton really is. The questions about her character, honesty, and trustworthiness, after more than a year of the email scandal are not going away. Even many who had been defending Clinton on the topic had to admit this week that the State Department's Inspector General's report was really bad for her. While the report, conducted of course not by Republicans or by Ken Starr, but officials of the Obama Administration's State Department made it clear that Secretary Clinton willingly and knowingly violated clear departmental policy regarding her use of personal email and that security risks in doing so were very present. While people may have differing views on whether using personal email or having a server in one's home was a bad idea or not, it continues to become very clear that all the explanations and promises Clinton made about the matter a year ago were very false. The facts are now clear that she was not doing this out of "convenience" but out of a desire to protect her privacy and despite many calls throughout the month to the contrary, she has been refusing to fully cooperate with the investigation.

Of course, besides the State Department's internal look at this matter, there is also the investigation being done by the FBI. I still do not think the Obama Justice Department will ever sign off on a prosecution of Clinton, regardless of what the FBI recommends, but it has to at least be considered a possibility. Donald Trump is certainly hoping so. At this point, Bernie Sanders likely is as well, and maybe Vice President Joe Biden can be added to that list.

As a near lifelong political junkie, as this summer begins, I am finding it more and more easy to try to avoid a lot of political news, but this campaign is going to be hard for anyone to avoid. That does not make it any less depressing. If nothing changes, the next President of the United States (and I think we really do need a new one after the last eight years), will either be a Democrat whom I happen to believe might very well belong behind bars, and a Republican whom I think deserves to be shunned from public life and discourse. Maybe by the end of this summer, the situation will look different and there will be someone else who might possibly become President and be worthy of the honor. It just looks very hard to see how anything (worth rooting for) might produce such a remedy.


At 3:42 PM, Blogger Steve Boudreaux said...



Post a Comment

<< Home