Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Note to Obama --- you need the anti-war votes

Obama may have made a mistake in taking the peace vote for granted. Opposition to the war is a super-majority position of American voters but Obama is not getting their support. Polls show that three independent and third party peace candidates could influence the outcome of the election. An August 27th Time/CNN poll shows Ralph Nader polling 8 percent in New Mexico, 7 percent in Colorado, 7 percent in Pennsylvania, and 6 percent in Nevada. Nader’s support has been increasing throughout the summer. Similarly, Bob Barr has been polling between 1.5 percent and 4 percent in swing states. Green Party candidate Cynthia McKinney, who is rarely asked about by pollsters, is polling at 2 percent in Colorado and 3 percent in Nevada .

I'm going to vote for Obama, not because I have any illusions about substantial policy changes but because I think electing McCain would be tantamount to ratifying our nation's mistakes over the last eight years. (Let's face facts: The U.S. was a belligerent empire before 2000, but "W" made the U.S.'s dark side into its only side during his stint at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.)

Instead of shitting on all the aforementioned third-party candidates (the Democratic Party modus operandi for the last few elections), principled Democrats (if that isn't a contradiction in terms) need to call Obama's campaign offices and tell him what we all know:

"Americans don't want anymore wars, especially those fought on the basis of lies. Support the anti-war position and it will support you, Barack. Ignore it and tack rightward at your, and our, peril."

At this point it is up to the peace movement to demand Obama earn their votes and get on the side of the super majority that wants the Iraq war and occupation ended — really ended. Obama has the Iraqi government, the Iraqi people and the American people all in support of this position. Certainly he is a capable enough pol to side with the majority.

If Obama is unable to capture the vote of the vast majority of voters opposed to the war he has little chance of winning this election.

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If he is unable to capture that vote, then frankly he doesn't deserve to be president. And if our electorate is too stupid to avoid falling for another Republican dog-and-pony show, then the U.S. deserves all it has coming.

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