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Thoughts on Voting

"The people who cast the votes don't decide an election; the people who COUNT the votes do." -- Joseph Stalin

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Importance of Experience in Iowa: Hillary, Obama and Abe Lincoln

As the first Democratic primary approaches in Iowa, local residents have been bombarded with tv commercials, personal appearances, and mailers, all espousing the merits of the individual candidates and some besmirching the qualifications or personal integrity of the others. An unfortunate circumstance has Hillary Clinton resorting to dirty tricks similar to those used traditionally by Republicans such as Richard Nixon and George W. Bush. Click here for Proof: Hillary Attacks Obama.

The main focus of Ms. Clinton's attacks has been Barack Obama. The Illinois senator is in this race as the ONLY candidate who has not been stained by his Washington insider connections and use of lobbyists and his mantra for Change has elevated his status among the voters. Thus, Ms. Clinton is forced to resort to unseemly attacks in order to push John Edwards above Obama in Iowa and slow his march toward the Presidency.

Mrs. Clinton's main focus on Obama has been his so-called lack of experience. First, let's examine Ms. Clinton's experience. As a young girl, she was very conservative, supporting right-wing candidate, Barry Goldwater, as one of the Goldwater Girls. During her husband's eight-year reign as President, Ms. Clinton really did not take a very active part in his administration. We know about her failure to bring about healthcare reform. But what about her participation in foreign affairs? She held no security clearance, was not provided a copy of the President's daily intelligence briefings, and did not attend National Security Council meetings. In fact, she had very little involvement in her husbands' policy making decisions. It is pure speculation as to how much she was actually communicating with her husband during the Monica Lewinsky fiasco.

As the US Senator from New York, she has done very little to distinguish herself legislatively. On Iraq, Ms. Clinton says she will pull the troops out, but then says she will keep a force there to conduct counter-terrorism operations. This ability to stand on both sides of the fence on issues as she has clearly demonstrated in the "debates" we have seen, shows a true politician, and, in my opinion, not a person anyone can rely upon to stand firmly on an issue. Can you say "flip-flop"? Her vote to declare the Iranian Republican Guard a terrorist organization (the only Democratic candidate to side with George Bush on this issue) is a RED LIGHT. She was fooled once on Iraq, is she being fooled again on Iran?

Experience.

So, let's give Hillary credit for her experience as a US Senator. Her First Lady "experience" is questionable.

Now, let's take a look at Senator Obama and compare his experience with the man many consider the greatest President of all, Abraham Lincoln. Mr. Lincoln's experience was as follows:

1832 — Ran for the Illinois legislature; LOST.
1834 — Ran for the Illinois legislature and was elected Representative for Sangamon County.
1836 — Re-elected Representative to the Illinois legislature.
1838 — Re-elected Representative to the Illinois legislature.
1840 — Re-elected Representative to the Illinois legislature.
1846 — Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives.
1854 — Elected to the Illinois legislature; resigned to run for U.S. Senate; LOST.
1858 — Ran for U.S. Senate; LOST.
1860 — Ran for President of the United States and was elected.
1864 — Re-elected President of the United States.

Mr. Lincoln served as a state legislator for 8 years, and for 8 years in Congress. He then lost his race for the US Senate TWICE, and finally was elected President.

Mr. Obama lgraduated from Columbia University, where he majored in political science and specialized in international relations. He then attended Harvard Law School, graduated magna cum laude, and served as the first African-American president of the Harvard Law Review. After law school, he worked as a community organizer and a civil rights lawyer in Chicago. He also taught at the University of Chicago Law School as a senior lecturer specializing in constitutional law.

Obama represented the South Side of Chicago in the Illinois State Senate for 8 years from 1996–2004 as a Democrat. In 2004, he was elected to the U.S. Senate, winning with 70% of the vote against conservative black Republican, Alan Keyes. Obama became the only African-American serving in the U.S. Senate (and the fifth in U.S. history).

Obama's idealism, commitment to civil rights, extensive knowledge of and respect for the Constitution, and experience and knowledge of other cultures and international affairs, make his candidacy one that can transcend the normal political hijinks we are experiencing from the Clintons.

TO ALL IOWA VOTERS: Don't be fooled by the so-called Experience factor. Vote for Barack Obama.

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