I'm not yet certain how I will vote in the upcoming election. I have never abstained from voting or voted for a third party candidate, mostly because it always seemed like throwing away my vote or helping the Democrats. I held my nose and voted for McCain and I held my nose and voted for Romney. That turned out terribly: eight years of Obama, the worst President in my lifetime. And I find myself facing the same dilemma: not voting, going third party, or voting for a Republican candidate who does not represent my conservative values. Can I hold my nose again, cross my fingers, and hope for the best? I’m not sure I can. This is awful.
I don’t like this feeling.
At least Ted Cruz offered some hope of a return to conservative ideals and a chance for a prosperous America. Clinton and Sanders offer socialism, more government control over our lives, more of the downward spiral toward tyranny. Trump offers ... hell, I don't know what Trump offers. He seems to have no attachment to principle at all; everything is negotiable. He has said too many things that seemed like policy positions and then changed his mind. He’s no conservative. His ego can’t fit in a room without pushing reason and common sense out the back door. He uses the best words, he’ll hire the best people, he hates and loves people better than anyone has before him. And they all hate and love him back. He will unite us all against us all. He’s the best at thinking he’s the best. And if you don’t believe him, just ask him.
Although I cannot trust Donald Trump to take a stand on any issue and then stick with it, I'll be listening to what he has to say over the next months in hopes that I will hear something worth clinging to. How sick is that? I have often said that politics is a promise waiting to be broken. And here I am … hoping to hear a promise I can live with … from a politician I already don't trust. I fear it is more likely that the next few months will reveal Trump to be worse than I have dared imagine.
I really hate that feeling.
Nonetheless, I will eventually make my voting decision and accept my responsibility for the outcome it creates. I will not sit out the election. My duty as an American citizen will be fulfilled.
I have these fanciful thoughts that suggest we are instore for a happy surprise. It’s not based in knowledge and does not reach the level of a “gut” feeling (which would give me more confidence if it did). This feeling is just a vague notion, a hope, perhaps merely wishful thinking that we will be rescued from these terrible political choices facing us. Maybe I’m just dreaming. The only way I can see it happening is if a viable third party alternative emerges and sweeps the nation with an undeniably persuasive campaign message, a message that will appeal to disheartened conservative voters, a message that can reach the rational minds of those Democrats, Republicans and independent voters who have fallen victim to emotion in this season of disrespect, this season of despicable front runners, this season of deceit so many have accepted as truth. Splitting from the party to make a third party run and then failing to get elected is likely a career-ending decision. Is there a nationally known conservative politician with that kind of courage, that level of leadership skill, a leader who can make us feel like one country again? Is it okay to feel that such a hero is waiting for the right time to show himself?
I guiltily cherish and nurture that feeling.
Maybe a third party candidate will also emerge on the left, given Clinton’s high negatives and potential legal problems. If that happens, the votes may get split enough for a third party conservative candidate to have a chance at winning the election. What a shakeup to our political parties that would be. There I go, dreaming again.
I don't know what to expect from the election. But I do know something: America is stronger than any politician or political party. America survived recent wars that have divided us, for and against; America survived two world wars that could have turned the planet dark; America survived a civil war; America was born in a revolution that defeated a mighty power to gain her independence. America has survived awful political decisions, recessions and a depression. And if she has to, America will survive Clinton or Sanders or Trump. Comparing the 2016 election to the trials of American history is like comparing a sparkler to a hydrogen bomb.
I am downhearted but I am not defeated. And I still have a part to play in Americas quest for freedom and prosperity. And so do you. We all just have to figure out what we can do to save our country. It won’t be easy but this is not the time to give up, not if the vision of the founders is still worth fighting for ... and it is. America is still the world's best hope to defeat socialism and radical Islamic forces … and we all must do our part to restore traditional American values, free markets, and individual rights. When we succeed, however long that may take, the world will owe us a debt of gratitude … and the founders will smile down upon us. Today may seem bleak but the future is still filled with wonderful possibilities worthy of great effort and persistence.
Each Sunday morning, I begin my day by tweeting a special message.
“Each new day imparts an honor I will always praise and cherish: to awaken in America and know that I am home.”
I love that feeling.
God bless America.