As I have said on here several times, I take all high profile endorsements with a grain of salt because they rarely amount to anything when it comes to actual support. With that in mind, knowing my endorsement means even less, it's time for me to weigh in on who I'm supporting and why. My criteria is someone who has proven leadership, understands the times we are in, has a proven track record, a conservative, and is electable.
First, I'll go through the candidates I'm not supporting and why. The order is in reverse, from least favorite to most favorite.
All Democrats: It doesn't matter who the eventual Republican nominee will be, as I have done in the past, I publicly pledge to support the eventual Republican nominee. Any effort to support a third party candidate if your Repub nominee isn't chosen is extremely shortsighted and flat out dangerous.
There is not one Dem who understands the threat we face as a nation post 9-11, nor how to confront that threat in order to keep us safe. There is not one Dem who understands the huge damage tax increases will cause to the economy. There is not one Dem who understands how national healthcare will cripple the health care industry. For those reason and many many more, there is not one Dem in this race I can support.
Ron Paul: There is a lot that I like about Dr. No. He is hands down one of the most fiscally conservative and strict constitutional constructionist in Congress. However, he is flat out wrong on foreign policy. His isolationist policy is not what is needed, especially now. For that reason, I cannot support him.
Mitt Romney: He is a great business mind and would be a great manager. I just don't see him as a leader, and I just don't trust him. He has flipped on way too many issues that he needed to flip on to have any chance. For someone to say he is to the left of Ted Kennedy in one election and then say he is a conservative in another one doesn't pass the smell test.
Mike Huckabee: He says all the right things. He has all the trappings of someone I should love. In fact, he was my first choice for quite awhile. That is until he made it to the top tier and his record as Governor starting surfacing. As much as some are saying that Rudy would destroy the Republican party, Huckabee might be closer to that possibility. He is a big government supporter in the clothes of compassionate conservatism. He raised taxes way too much. His in-state tuition for illegal aliens was not smart. His pledge to ban smoking nationwide is nanny state government to the max. And one of his biggest faults in my book is his embracing of manmade global warming with all the government regulations that go along with it. He says most of the right things, but his track record says otherwise. He is also extremely weak on foreign policy as his latest gaffes on Pakistan have proved.
John McCain: I have a lot of respect for McCain. He paid a high price to serve our nation. However, he has been wrong on too many issues. Just to name a few: campaign finance, illegal immigration, gang of 14, waterboarding, and several others.
Fred Thompson: He is good on nearly every issue, campaign finance not being one of them. He would be very easy to support. However, he does absolutely nothing for me. He has no drive that I can see. He has no passion that I can see. And this isn't just in his presidential run. Talk to staffers on the Hill and they will tell you that was exactly the same when he was Senator. He was always a very consistent vote, but never lead or did much of anything other than vote right.
Duncan Hunter: There is only one issue that I disagree with Hunter on and that is his stance against free trade. Other than that, he is hands down the candidate that is the closest to my positions on all issues. However, he just has done nothing to raise his profile. I don't know if it is a personality issue or a campaign staff issue, but either way he has remained in the bottom tier and won't win the nomination. I really hope he gets a high cabinet position, Sec Def, to raise his profile for the future.
So, if you are keeping tabs, that only leaves on candidate.
1. He has a very proven track record. What he did to turn around NYC, a city labeled as ungovernable, is remarkable. From crime capital of the country to the safest large city is nothing to shake a stick at.
2. He is a proven leader. His handling of 9-11 was just what the city and country needed. He isn't labeled America's Mayor for nothing.
3. He understands the times. He has been very involved on multiple levels of facing the reality of the threat we face. He will not pander and will not care who likes us or not. His first priority, as all Presidents should be, will be to keep us safe.
4. He is a conservative. I know this is the area he gets hit on the most. However, social issues are only one of the planks of the Republican party. On taxes, on states' rights, on foreign policy, on size of federal government, on immigration, judges he has a proven record of being a conservative.
On the one plank, social issues, he is weak on, his support of states' rights and strict constructionist judges takes care of that for me. It is because of liberal judges that we have abortion on demand. It is because of liberal judges, we have gay marriage in a few states. It is because of liberal judges, that prayer in school and the ten commandments are ruled as unconstitutional. Giuliani has pledged judges in the mold of Scalia, Thomas and Roberts, and because he hasn't flipped on the social issues just to appease the base, I trust him to stay true on that commitment as well.
For people like Dr. Dobson to say that if he is the nominee they will go third party is ridiculous. All that will do is hand the election over to the Dem. That is so dangerous, especially post 9-11. One of the arguments they use is that we survived 8 years of a Clinton already and we can do it again. The problem with that theory is that Bill just wanted everyone to like him, and so he completely followed the polls and voted that way. Hillary is a true believer in all of the socialist agenda tenets and will fight to see every single one of them enacted. We can't take that chance, especially if we don't win back Congress. If Dobson were to hold the standard he is holding Giuliani to, he would have not voted for Reagan due to his support of abortion as governor of California. I have a feeling, back in 1980, he was a very strong supporter of Reagan as he should be a supporter of Giuliani over any of the Dems.
5. He is electable. If Giuliani is the nominee, that immediately puts states like NY, PA, CA and NJ as well as many other blue states in play. I don't think he could win any of them, but he will force the Dem to spend money there that they could use in red states with other nominees.
So far all those reasons and just a gut feeling that he is the right person for the job at this time, I support Rudy Giuliani for President!
Well, that's my two cents. If you want to read another endorsement of Giuliani that is way more elegant than mine, surf on over to Mike's America. Also endorsing on my blogroll: Wordsmith and LMC. If I missed anyone's endorsement of Giuliani, let me know.