I know a lot of you folks are convinced that Barack Obama is dangerously inexperienced and liberal OR your convinced that John McCain is deranged and nothing more than a George W. Bush carbon copy. Demonization of “the other” in politics is a long and storied American tradition. I’ve played along many a time. But this year, things are different.

This election, we have two good choices – or at least the best two choices for which we could have hoped.

I know, that’s political blasphemy. I’m sure some of you are typing “naïve” into the comments right now. But I think there’s a lot to like about Obama and McCain. I think both are coming from outside the “typical” in American politics and I think both will be less beholden to partisanship than either of their opponents would like us to believe. These are two very smart men who I believe are patriots in the truest sense of the word. I have serious disagreements with them both, but I’d trust either to keep a steady hand on the wheel of state.

I’m not that old, this is only the fifth presidential election in which I’ll be voting, but I think I’ve learned one very important lesson: it’s never as bad as the wild-eyed opponents claim it will be. Despite whatever screw-up we put in the Oval Office, the nation survives. Whichever self-interested political party we put in charge of Congress, we keep right on going. Whoever appoints the judges and whoever those judges are has yet to upset the rule of law. We go on and we do pretty well.

I realize this is an important election. George W. Bush has left a few messes, and globalization and terrorism are pressing problems that, if not handled well, could cause significant harm to our nation. But being president is about more than policy preferences. It’s about leadership and the ability to make the right choices in unforeseen moments. In that regard, I think both of these men would lead us as well as we could hope through the next four to eight years.

McCain, at this moment, seems to me to be the better option, based on his experience and his resistance to solving problems by expanding government. But government has solved problems in the past and I’m not so bold as to say Obama’s plans would fail or irrevocably harm our nation.

I’m supporting McCain but I won’t lock down that support at anything near 100%. I’m open to reconsideration and I wish more of my independent-minded brethren would also realize that this year does not offer us an obvious choice. Both sides are doing an excellent job of demonizing the other, exaggerating small details and resorting to fear mongering. But I don’t plan to buy in to such b.s., no matter how loud it gets.

For the first time in my life, I feel I have the opportunity to vote for someone rather than against someone. Call me naïve for saying that. But, damn it all, I’ve found reasons to like them both.

Politics Two Solid Choices