Pulling the Lever

PULLING THE LEVER….So who am I going to vote for tomorrow? Answer: Barack Obama.

I’ve got some good reasons and some bad reasons for changing my mind. The good reasons include (a) the ugliness coming out of the Clinton camp over the past couple of weeks, which has turned me off, (b) a growing sense that Obama’s steadiness running his campaign under fire is a good sign of what he’d be like as president, and (c) some of the red state endorsements Obama has gotten recently, which speak well for his potential to produce strong coattails in November.

There are also some not-so-good reasons. I’m half embarrassed to admit that this stuff even affects me, but the fact is that the actions of both the candidates’ supporters and detractors has had an impact. Watching Andrew Sullivan rant and rave on a daily basis about Hillary, for example, has had the perverse effect of keeping me on her side. I just hated the thought of fever swamp hatred like that influencing my party’s nomination. Conversely, today’s Paul Krugman column, which was yet another installment in his months-long anti-Obama jihad, had the opposite effect. I don’t like Obama’s mini-demagoguery of Hillary’s healthcare plan either, but for chrissake, it’s an election. A bit of hardball is to be expected and I can’t for the life of me figure out what Obama has done to drive a sensible guy like Krugman over a cliff.

Anyway, I realize that this stuff shouldn’t matter, but it’s all part of the mix. And while I still like both candidates a lot (which is what’s kept me on the fence for so long), I guess I finally decided that Bill Clinton was right: voting for Obama is a roll of the dice. I still don’t know whether Obama is likely to be the Democratic Ronald Reagan (my hope) or the next Democratic Jimmy Carter (my fear), but I like his temperament, I like his judgment, I like his foreign policy, I like his obvious ability to inspire, and I think he’s more likely to be RR than JC. I guess I’m willing to roll the dice.