I have been told that if I want to avoid lines when I vote early today, I should arrive at the one location for early voting in LA County before noon. Given that there is only one such location in this, the largest county in the nation, we should expect long lines. But, I’m not sure that if I get there at noon, I’ll have made up my mind.
I guess I’ll just take a book and some print-outs of articles on the election so I can entertain myself when I vote later in the day — hoping I have come closer to a decision.
While I am certainly leaning toward one candidate, I have my doubts about him as I have my doubts about his rival for the GOP nomination. After getting polled on Friday, I got phone-banked on Saturday. Perhaps, aware of the indecision I expressed in that poll, McCain’s campaign wanted to remind me of his conservative record.
I heard the Arizona Senator’s recorded voice express a commitment to conservative ideas. (I had to rush to grab a pencil so was not able to transcribe the first few seconds.) He called himself a “Ronald Reagan conservative,” pledged to lower taxes and, on the issue of immigration, to securing the border first(glad to hear him recognize this and his shift from the legislation he proposed last year). He said, “I will appoint conservative judges” like Chief Justice Roberts and Associate Justice Alito. Most importantly, he reminded me that the “greatest challenge is the defeat of radical Islamic extremists.”
Were it not for his performance in last Wednesday’s debate — and his past bucking of the party — that call might have sold me on John McCain.
I am pleased that he is reaching out to the right. I was delighted to read that not only has he won the endorsement of Steve Forbes, a prominent fiscal conservative, but that he has also brought one of the nation’s leading conservative jurists, former Solicitor General Ted Olson onto his campaign, to co-chair Senator McCain’s Judicial Advisory Committee. A good sign that if elected president, the Arizona Senator will appoint conservative judges to the federal bench.
McCain will need to make more such moves if he wants to win over his party’s base. In his phone appeal, he has shown that he understands how to talk the conservative talk. But, the real issue is, how he convince us that if elected, he will walk the walk?
[Please note that I have called this part one as I hope to build on the ideas I am developing in this post on how McCain needs to reach out to conservatives to win the Republican nomination this spring and hold onto the conservative base this fall]
UPDATE: Decided to go to an event at my synagogue this morning. I returned home to find a message on my answering machine from John McCain. He begins by saying that he has “listened and learned” on immigration. I want to believe this is true.
I will weigh this message as I head off to vote in a few minutes.