To date this blog has focused exclusively on the '06 mid-term elections. So what better day than 06/06/06 to begin to talk about '08?
I'll preface this by providing a bit more color on my presidential politics voting history.
In my profile I express the hope "that by being complete, forthright, and transparent in my personal political bias and history, I can unload some of the emotional baggage carried in every political conversation, and deflect accusations of harboring a hidden agenda or participating in a conspiracy favoring Democrats (in '06) or Republicans (in '08)." The operative word in that statement is "hope" and not "expect". Springing eternally with that hope, and in the interest of transparency, I offer this additional background to support my identity as a "libertarian leaning independent".
Without additional comment, my complete presidential election voting history:
68 - Too young to vote - but worked for Eugene McCarthy
72 - John Hospers (L) (Nixon v McGovern)
76 - Gerald Ford (R)
80 - Ronald Reagan (R)
84 - David Bergland (L) (Reagan v Mondale)
88 - George H. Bush (R)
92 - Bill Clinton (D)
96 - Bob Dole (R)
00 - George W. Bush (R)
04 - John Kerry (D)
Ok, I lied. Looking over this list I am compelled to make a couple of comments. FWIW, I apparently have a problem maintaining political fidelity to any President for a second term, since I've never actually voted for a second term for anyone. So be it. Regarding my Libertarian votes, the first in '72 was ideologically motivated, as I had just finished reading the complete works of Ayn Rand. The second Libertarian vote in '84 was more of a protest vote, when I became disenchanted with Reagan's massive deficits and Iran-Contra machinations. The Reagan presidency planted the seeds that would eventually grow into the political philosophy articulated on this blog. I recognized then that the massive deficits under the Reagan presidency could never have happened with a Democratic President, for the simple reason that the Republicans in Congress would not stand for it.
As I describe in the DWSUWF voting strategy, my intent is to support a Republican presidential candidate in '08 if the Dems can take control of either house in '06. Or, conversely, a Democratic candidate if the Republicans maintain control of Congress. Depending what happens, just start at the top of the list and work down, and you have my candidate.
So, without further ado, version 1.0 of :
DWSUWF 2008 Presidential Candidate Preference Stack Ranking
- Chuck Hagel (R)
- Joe Biden (D)
- John McCain (R)
- Bill Richardson (D)
- Rudolf Giuliani (R)
- John Kerry (D)
- Newt Gingrich (R)
- Wesley Clark (D)
- Hillary Clinton (D)
- Condi Rice (R)
I used the MSNBC "Contenders" list as the pool from which to select my top 10 candidates (and I also borrowed their graphic for the top of this post - hopefully the gratuitous link will assuage their feelings)
Some caveats: This list will, of course, change over the next couple of years - and probably over the next couple of months. Beyond the top three picks, the ranking is somewhat random as I have not put a lot of analysis or thought into candidates 4 though 8, but we've got to start somewhere.
Net net: If the Dems take the House in '06, Hagel is my man for '08. The balance of this post will focus exclusively on my top pick.
I don't understand why Hagel does not have a higher profile and visibility with the electorate. Smart, articulate, Vietnam Vet, cripes - he even looks like a president. He was one of the very few Republican Senators to stand up to the President, and call a pig a pig when voting against the Medicare Prescription Bill Plan.
Check out these Hagel quotes from his bio on Wikipedia:
"To question your government is not unpatriotic -- to not question your government is unpatriotic."And if you really want to appreciate the man, read a few of his speeches. I particularly like this well thought out and frighteningly prescient speech on American Foreign Policy from 2003.
"I took an oath of office to the Constitution, I didn't take an oath of office to my party or my president."
"National security is more important than the Republican Party or the Democratic Party."
Some other links of interest:
Sandhill PAC - Hagel's Political Action Committee
Charlie Hinderliter is unofficially blogging for his candidacy
Hagel's official website.
We truly need a President like Chuck Hagel, but first we need to end single party control of the Federal Government in 2006 and for all time.