Sunday, April 29, 2012

So who to support?

Barack Obama Vs. Mitt Romney

Santorum and Gingrich are out, Ron Paul... exists, and Huntsman, the candidate which I supported in the past, faded away and died due to a lack of recognition and funds. So now it has come down to two choices, incumbent Barack Obama, or runner-up Mitt Romney. So who do I support?

The reason why this is a tough choice is that I honestly like both Romney and Obama. Mitt Romney, for example, was previously a moderate Massachusetts Governor from 2002-2006. During that time he showcased his stance as a fiscal conservatism while still being relatively liberal when it came to social issues, indicated by his previous support for gay and abortion rights. His previous experience as an executive at Bain Capital, and the President and CEO of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympic Games Organizing Committee indicate his experience as a leader.

You'd think that with all that said though, Romney would be the definitive choice. Admittedly, when it comes to the economy, Romney's stronger when it comes to fiscal issues when compared to Obama, who's current rhetoric reeks of populism due to proximity of election day. However, the reason why I won't support Romney is due to the fact that the positions he held as governor previously have long sinced changed, his stance changing from that of a moderate Republican, to that of an extremist.

Normally, I wouldn't hate this. I accept that people can change in any direction with time and experience. With Romney though, the changing of his views coinciding with his 2008 Presidential candidacy is too much of a coincidence to make this idea of evolving views even reasonable. This coupled with his "severely conservative" statement made at CPAC 2012 make it glaringly obvious that Romney is being an opportunist. He obviously is more moderate then he claims to be, but his willingness to hide behind extreme conservative positions such as opposition to gay marriage and abortion rights, is infuriatingly disappointing. This isn't enough to make me opposed to a Romney presidency, as I don't think it's possible that Romney could, in good conscience, follow up with all the outrageous campaign promises he has made to the conservative extremists, but it's enough to cause me to support Obama.

Two things need to made absolutely clear about Obama though: I do not believe that he has done a perfect job and I definitely do not support him with much enthusiasm. The populist tone and the bashing of the wealthy definitely don't sit well with me. That being said, Obama has done well with foreign policy issues and has improved the economy, albeit slowly. His social liberalism is great, but his hesitance to fully embrace gay rights is a bit frustrating, though a repealing of Don't Ask Don't Tell does indicate what side he's leaning on. Economically, Obama is more mixed. Being a Democrat should make me automatically disagree with his economic policy, but his actions in office have been quite surprising. His willingness to allow for cuts to social programs during the debt fight was the most shocking due to the improbability of a Democratic president even considering those cuts. This showed a willingness to cooperate with the Congressional Republicans, the actual failure of the negotiations occurring when the Republicans became completely uncompromising by not allowing for the expiration of the Bush tax cuts and the raising of revenues. However, Obama has not done the nation any favors by the demonizing of the wealthy, an obvious attempt to strike a populist tone by pandering to the societal hostility towards corporate culture.

It is for these reasons that I will vote for the reelection of President Obama come election day. While my enthusiasm has definitely waned, he has shown himself to be extremely moderate when compared with the "Romney of Today." That isn't to say that I'm against a Romney presidency, but I just wish he would be more honest and allow himself to be labeled a moderate. Moderate should not be a bad word.

No comments:

Post a Comment