Just the other day, my friend Laura DeGarmo-Hall posted a note on my Facebook page that simply said, "I don't know who to support, and Super Tuesday is right around the corner". I responded that she needed to decide which issues are more important to her, and then align herself with the candidate that most closely matches those issues.
But the problem is, with so much jibba-jabba out there, who knows what candidate believes what? That's why I decided to do a little research, and with the help of the Clinton News Network, aka, CNN, the DNC-TV, aka MSNBC, the Birmingham News newspaper, and Fox News, aka Fox News, I wanted to present what I call your own guide and reference tool to the issues upcoming.
I don't begrudge anyone for voting Obama... but know why you are voting Obama. No one that supports Obama can tell me why they do! Same for Hillary. So, I'll list them too. And if you agree, then hey, this is American, where you can be a socialist if you like.
My biggest issue? Immigration.
Hillary and Obama both voted for the 2006 bill that gave a path to citizenship for all illegals, and supported a border fence. Huckabee favors allowing illegal immigrants to gain citizenship through penalities and restrictions (the way he wants to do it looks good on paper, but won't work in real life), McCain supported the 2006 bill that Clinton and Obama supported, but now says he would secured the border first and foremost. Romney opposes the path to citizenship for illegals with penalities, and supports a border fence, National Guard at the border and ID Cards.
My vote: Mitt Romney. Read more here.
My second biggest issue? Taxes.
Huck supports a national sales tax, ie, a "Fair Tax" which again, looks good on paper, but will never... never... I REPEAT NEVER EVER NEVER NEVER get it passed through a Democratic congress... he might as well be saying "I'm going to give every American citizen a 56" flatscreen TV!" It sounds good, but know it will never happen. Not now. McCain opposed some of Bush's tax cuts, but now flipped and says he wants to keep them permanent. He also wants to cut corporate taxes to 25%. Romney says to give tax breaks to those earning less than $200K, get rid of capital gains taxes and interest.
The short answer on taxes for Hillary and Obama would be "Yes". The long answer is that Hillary wants to raise income taxes on the wealthiest citizens (a 60% tax bracket is not out of the question, mind you) and to keep estate tax. Obama wants to raise taxes, capital gains and interest taxes on the wealthy. Keep in mind that in some cases, making $60K per year is considered "wealthy". Give 80 billion in tax breaks to the poor and elderly.
My vote? If Huck could do a Fair Tax, I'd say Huckabee all the way. However, the Fair Tax will never happen, so I gotta give it to Romney again. Here's more on the subject
What about Social Security?
John McCain says he would consider almost anything in a compromise (with the Democratic congress) to save Social Security, but he rules out higher taxes for now. Romney simply says "higher taxes are the wrong way to go". Huck wants higher benefits for people who delay retirement past 70. Let retirees choose to get their money, or leave it to their family upon death.
Hillary proposes a federal match of up to $1,000 to set up 401(k) plans. Considering raising the cap on payroll taxes (ie, higher taxes for social security out of your pocket). Obama also considers raising payroll taxes.
My vote? Romney, especially if you read further.
Gay Marriage, and should there be a Constitutional Amendment banning it?
Hillary and Obama say no. McCain says no. Huckabee and Romney say yes. My vote? I don't agree with gay marriage, but no, I don't think we should write a constitutional amendment banning it. I think civil unions is a better option, and furthermore, I think it should be a right of the state to allow or disallow it. So I guess I side with Hillary, Obama and McCain on this one.
Can't believe me? Well, here's the page.
Huckabee wants to give more states authority to run education. McCain wants school choice and more community college aid, while Romney supports No Child Left Behind and school choice. Hillary wants $10 billion dollars for universal--
--understand that when the word "universal" comes in, that means everyone has to do it, and people who make more than $50,000 per year have to pay for it, ie, higher taxes--
--universal pre-school. Yes, demanding your kids go to a pre-appointed pre-school. She also supports a $10,000 per year scholarship for college for national service. Obama wants $18 billion for universal pre-school, teacher pay, $4K in college tax credits for community service.
My vote? I would say Huck, because I'm a big proponent of states rights... however, most states have unionized education, which makes for bad education, so I'm leaning towards Romney or McCain on this one.
Read more about thoughts on education
Hillary and Obama say yes. Huck and McCain say no, and Romney said yes 20 years ago, but now says no. My vote? Anything no. Anyone who cannot support a ban on Partial Birth Abortion should be sent to the corner. Its barbaric. Do not talk to me about Gitmo and Abu Graib when partial birth abortion is allowed.
Read more about the candidates on abortion rights
The Hoax Known as Global Warming
Hillary says she wants a $150 billion, 10 year energy package for new fuel sources. (which drives me nuts. THERE IS OIL IN OUR COUNTRY!!!!! THATS OUR NEW FUEL SOURCE!!!! FREAKIN' DRILL FOR IT!!!! SCREW THE SPOTTED HORN OWL!!!!!). But I digress. She also backs stringent caps on greenhouse gas emissions.
Obama wants pretty much the same thing.
Huck supports a 35 mgp fuel efficiency increase by 2020 and emission caps. McCain led the Senate effort to cap greenhouse gas emissions, and favors tougher fuel effeciency. Romney wants tougher mileage on cars, but opposes greenhouse gas emissions unless other countries do the same thing. He says the answer is to not depend on foreign oil.
My vote? I love Romney's answer... we won't sacrifice unless other countries do as well. He's got me here. Though honestly, if John Edwards stepped up and said "I think global warming is a farce", I'd be tempted to vote for him. Here's the page on energy research.
Stem Cell Research
First, let me explain to you that embryonic stem cell research
From a site I found: Those who value human life from the point of conception, oppose embryonic stem cell research because the extraction of stem cells from this type of an embryo requires its destruction. In other words, it requires that a human life be killed. Some believe this to be the same as murder. Against this, embryonic research advocates argue that the tiny blastocyst has no human features. Further, new stem cell lines already exist due to the common practice of in vitro fertilization. Research advocates conclude that many fertilized human cells have already been banked, but are not being made available for research. Advocates of embryonic stem cell research claim new human lives will not be created for the sole purpose of experimentation.
Also (this is d$ talking again) you have to know that despite all the research that has been done on embryonic stem cells, there have been no significant breakthroughs of any kind... unlike those of adult stem cells, which doctors and scientists have found many medical advances.
President Bush has very tight federal restrictions on embryonic stem cell research. Hillary and Obama want to relax those restrictions. So does McCain. Huck and Romney do not.
My vote? Romney. As governor, he tried to stop legislation that backed more embryonic stem cell research.
Read more about embryonic stem cell research
Hillary and Obama support gun control. Huck favors "right to carry" laws, McCain opposed ban on assault type weapons, and Romney favors strict state gun control.
My vote? Toss up. Romney favors state control, ie, let the states decide, but I do like McCain's opposition to the ban on assault weapons and favoring background checks. Here's the info.
Ah, the big one. Under HillaryCare, we'd get taxed for a $110 billion per year mandatory universal coverage, and this would happen as soon as she takes office. Tax credits to make insurance more affordable (not for you and me, though). Obama doesn't ask for mandatory health care for adults, but for children. This means you, Laura DeGarmo-Hall, can't take Junior to your doctor, you have to go the one you are mandated for.
Huck wants to "spend more money on prevention, and let market and states expand insurance", while Romney actually signed into law what was aimed at ensuring universal coverage. McCain wants a $2,500 tax credit per taxpayer to help pay for insurance.
My vote? Romney's leanings toward universal care scares me. That is the worst idea you can think of. I'm going McCain on this one... for now. To go more in-depth, click here... don't forget, under HillaryCare, and even ObamaCare, free health care would be given to the tiny children through the age of... 25. To poor families barely meeting the poverty line, making up to... $80,000 per year. No, KT, I wish I were kidding.
The War in Iraq
Hillary opposed the troop increase & surge that happened over the last 12 months. She doesn't have a timetable for withdrawal, and though she voted for the war, she said she would vote differently now. Obama says he'd get the troops out in 16 months, and spoke out against the war at the start.
Huck faults Bush for not sending enough troops in at the start and has been critical of the President's handling of the war. McCain was a critic of the war in its early stages, but backed the surge, and opposes any scheduled pull out. Romney supported the surge and the prosecution of the war.
Understand this truth, though. The Democrats have been doing everything they can to get President Bush to fail in Iraq, and to have our troops lose under his watch. If the Democrats get the White House, however, there is no stinkin' way that they would want to lose the war under their watch. They'll do everything they can to finish because no one wants to be known as the president who lost a war that was being won handily.
My vote? Yes, yes, McCain is a war hero. He knows the military--for this, I have to give him the edge here... but only razor-thin slightly over Romney.
What about Iran?
No matter what Hillary and Obama say about Iraq's shoulda woulda coulda, Iran is a problem the next president will be forced to deal with. Huck says to intensify talks with Iran, and believes that we can do military action without Congressional approval. McCain agrees with possible military action, but wants Congressional approval. Romney says the US should not engage in bilateral talks with Iran, and that military action remains on the table.
Obama wants to talk more. So does Hillary. She did vote to declare Iran's Revolutionary Guard a terrorist organization, Obama abstained from the vote.
Read more here.
And finally, one that is now dear to my heart... the housing "crisis", which is really a fallout of Congress demanding that mortgage companies give the poor, broke people a chance to buy a house they can't afford, to which the mortgage companies have done--hence, Sub Prime Lending--and now that those people who were poor and broke when they got the house they couldn't afford are realizing they can't afford the house they have because... well, they are poor and broke, Congress is demanding bailouts for the foreclosures and coming down hard on those mortgage companies.
Greedy mortgage companies + irresponsible people + Congress who won't let the market do its thing = lots of foreclosures and bankruptcies that you and I will pay for via tax dollars.
I'll let you read the details here, but know that I support Obama's "Credit Card Bill of Rights", but I really like Huck's line that says the problem needs to be handled by the people who got themselves in the mess in the first place, and does not support a government bailout. I agree with Huck more than I go with Romney.
My vote here? Huckabee.
So there you have it... the issues in a nutshell, and what each candidate thinks. But please, don't take only my word for it. Research, Google, read more for yourselves.
I was pulling for Giuliani initially, but then became a Thompson supporter... and that didn't pan out. I'm a conservative first, and Republican second, and I just think that we should help people get on their feet, but no more. Then let 'em work for it, like the rest of us do. We help you when your down, but your responsibility is to educate yourself and work hard so that you don't get down again. Not to sit around and collect handouts because you are entitled to something. You aren't entitled to anything. Sorry.
My vote? I'm going for Mitt Romney. I am not happy with my choices, but this is the guy I will get behind as it stands. Vote your heart and what's important to you, Laura.
Oh... and let's close those borders!!