I just had a thought. I have become so used to the idea of voting for the lesser of two evils during Presidential elections, that it never really occured to me that I could, for once in my life, be voting for the greater of two goods this November.
I am still firmly on the fence, but it's refreshing to think it could be because I really don't have anything (YET) of substance against either candidate. Barack is a bit too much "rock star" for my taste - especially given his very REAL lack of experience. John McCain is, frankly, about 10 years too old. But overall, I find both men to be attractive candidates - likable, believable and intelligent. Compare these two with the candidates from the past few elections...
2004 - George W. Bush vs. John Kerry - The epitome of lesser of two evils. Bush was not proving to be a particularly effective President, but America just plain didn't like John Kerry.
2000 - George W. Bush vs. Al Gore - People love Al Gore today, but he was a pretty weak candidate back in 2000, and so was Bush. Heck, if Gore had carried his own home state, we never would have had to learn about pregnant chads.
1996 - Bill Clinton vs. Bob Dole - Okay, I'll grant you... this was NOT a lesser of two evils election. Clinton did have an effective first term, and Dole was a well-respected elder statesman. But given Clinton's incumbency, this was never a very close election to begin with.
1992 - Bill Clinton vs. George H.W. Bush vs Ross Perot - The fact that Perot drew nearly 19 percent of the vote shows this was the ultimate in the lesser of THREE evils elections....
1988 - George Bush vs. Mike Dukakis - America was not really thrilled at the idea of giving a third straight term to the GOP, but Bush was running against Dukakis, who was a Democratic prototype for John Kerry.
Call me idealistic, but I think there's a real chance Americans will go to the polls on November 4th feeling good about the choices they have to make. It's far too easy in our sharply divided nation to take sides, and we spend far too much time trashing our opponents. There is plenty that is subject to change in the next 57 days, but as of right now... If my choice (whoever it turns out to be) doesn't win, I think I'll be fairly comfortable with the other guy in the White House.
Obama may be a rock star, but at least he's not a wooden board like Kerry or Gore or Dukakis. McCain may be old, but he's not (no matter what the Democrat talking points say) a carbon copy of George W. Bush, and he will be a strong leader if elected.