The Right Kind of Friends

I have friends who are Republicans. It’s true.

They are scared of Obama because they feel he is too liberal, too soft on terrorism and all style and no substance. They are core conservative in their values – work hard, less government, lower taxes. They will vote for John McCain because he’s the conservative candidate. They aren’t particular excited by McCain, but in their eyes he’s the lesser of two evils.

And I can support their decision.

I don’t agree with it, mind you. They have, on occasion, said they wish I would write more about the two and half hours away girl then presidential politics. Stuff I’ve written here have made their blood boil in probably the same way I feel whenever I hear the garbage coming from Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter or Rush Limbaugh.

Still, in this election cycle the Republican brand is toxic. George Bush has tarnished the Republican party in the exact same way Richard Nixon tarnished the image in the 70s. We have some Republicans denouncing the recent McCain attack ads and even some endorsing Obama.

McCain, in order to become president, has inexplicably gathered many of the Bush cronies into his campaign. I don’t see how embracing the neo-con movement helps the Republicans in the Fall. George Bush is not exactly the kind of friend I’d like to have in my corner in 2008.

As much as I’d like to try and convince my friends that choosing McCain over Obama is not a good choice, it’s still their choice. My only argument that might have a bit of traction with them is, “are you better off now then you were eight years ago.” They might waffle on that one, but for them they might actually be in a better place. I’d say they are the exception to the rule.

Of course, none of this matters. Presidential politics in early August is the calm before the storm of VP picks, conventions and debates. As soon as voters start paying attention to the presidential campaign again (the conventions, the debates), I expect they will see what I feel the race for the presidency will boil down to: a young, vibrant, inspirational leader who doesn’t represent the status quo vs. a cranky, grumpy old man who can’t get his positions straight. Plus, the grumpy guy has the wrong friends.

I, on the other hand, have the best friends in the world be they liberal or conservative.