My choice for president is now out of the race. And, I am not happy with either remaining choice – Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton. I am weary of Obama’s claim that he “has been against the war from day one.” Fine, but he wasn’t in office, so to say that he would have voted against the war is a moot point and shouldn’t even be considered. He wasn’t there, so he wasn’t faced with the same choice that others had to make. And besides, in one of his first speeches, he stated he wasn’t against war, he was just against this war. So, one has to wonder which wars – if any – in the future would he support?
Obama has also said repeatedly that while he would have voted against the war in 2002 based on what he knew at the time, he could not be sure that classified intelligence reports made available to senators wouldn’t have changed his mind. Thus, Obama himself acknowledges the possibility that he might have been convinced had he been in the Senate at that time.
Clinton, on the other hand, voted to give authorization to use military force against Iraq. Any attempt to explain her vote away by morphing her justification for her vote into “I thought the inspectors were going back in” is ludicrous. S.J. Res 46 is titled: A joint resolution to authorize the use of United States Armed Forces against Iraq. Now how can that be any clearer?
Both Obama and Clinton have voted in favor of bills which continue to support funding for the troops. However, in a switch, the May 2007 vote found both senators waiting until the last minute to vote “no” on the funding bill. Obama voted first, followed a few minutes later by Clinton. As far as I am concerned, neither one has shown much leadership on the issue of getting us “unstuck” from the quicksand of Iraq.
Much as people make fun of Dennis Kucinich, he has consistently stood by his convictions from day one and not only voted against authorization to use military force but also voted against increased funding for the war.
So, I am in a quandary right now. Neither Clinton nor Obama has been consistent on Iraq and that is a tremendous disappointment to me. As the weeks go by, I will need to research more and more into the positions held by each. I may not make up my mind until I walk into the voting booth on May 5, 2008.