As the race narrows it becomes more a question of who people dislike the most. I think this is a side-effect of the US having an institutionally-enforced 2-party system because all major candidates tend towards the middle. Candidates in the middle will not offer real change, they need to be saying the least offensive things to the largest number of people.
A few thoughts:
- I’m glad to see Rudy go (or, almost go). While he may have been the closest to the left on social issues he definitely was trying to take advantage of 9/11, which didn’t sit well with a lot of people, including myself.
- On the Republican side, assuming there’s no chance Ron Paul can win, I still don’t have an overwhelming negative opinion of McCain, not that I’d vote for him though. His stance on the Iraq war doesn’t bother me much. I’ve always had the opinion that since the US “broke” Iraq they have to make every effort to fix it. This doesn’t necessarily have to mean a large military presence for a long time, but it probably does in the short term. His hints about wanting to attack Iran are obviously not good but I’m not sure how much credibility to put in those. Overall he seems like a relatively honest, straightforward guy, which is immediately better than 99% of other politicians.
- Of the Democrats I hope Obama gets the nomination. While Hillary would be 100x better than Bush, I still don’t really like her. Every single thing she does comes off as politically calculating. Perhaps it was with Bill as well, but he had so much charisma that it didn’t come across that way. Plus, she’s the ‘status-quo’ candidate. Obama talks about change, and while he may not get there in reality, there’s a better chance than Hillary.