In a year we will be voting for president and, good chance, I will end up voting for whoever we Unity08 people end up choosing. Though maybe not. Hard to say. Give me a year.
Either way I love the Unity08 philosophy and fully believe that it's methodology has a spitting chance of working. Especially if we get, say, Clinton v Thompson from the big parties. (Reading Socrates on statesmanship isn't helping me feel optimistic, by the way.)
Anyway, right now Unity08 members are ranking some issues on importance to them. You can see how things are falling here. I haven't put my say in yet but I'm thinking about it and will. The first thing I'm doing as part of my thought process is subtracting all the issues I don't think a president should be concerned with. So, ixnay on:
Balancing the Federal Budget
Health Care Reform
Reducing Poverty in America
Restoring Family Values
Solvency of Social Security
Take abortion as an obvious example. The president's ability to affect the nation's abortion law is so minuscule (and, even when largish, indirect) that it's silly to think his/her opinion on the subject matters at all. It really doesn't.
Of course, modern politics means that, actually, the president does in fact have a lot of sway over purely legislative and judicial matters, which is why I let some things slip off the ixnay list even though, technically, they should be on it as well.
Let's see what's left:
- America's Role in International Affairs
- Are a shambles, pretty much, and this, in large measure, is the president's job. Let's elect someone who can mend some bridges.
Campaign and Election Reform
- The president enforces law. There are some decent laws governing campaigns and elections--I would love to see them more rigorously enforced. Not something a Republican- or Democrat-sponsored candidate is apt to manage.
- It's becoming more and more obvious all the time that if we look past today, this is a hugely important issue. I would like to see what candidates have to say about this--not that they can control it, but their alignment will likely make a big difference with how things play out.
Global Climate Change
- This is as much an international issue as a domestic one. That's where I'm most interested in a potential president's views.
Growth of the Economy
- I don't like that this is a de facto presidential responsibility. But so it goes. I'm not likely to make any decisions based on someone's views here, but I'll listen to them.
Involvement in Iraq
- This is very important. Obviously.
Lobbyist Corruption in Washington
- This is also totally the president's job. Of course, there are things he can't do without stepping on another branch's toes, but his/her actions are in line with general American opinion, he should be fine.
- I'm not going to really consider this issue in choosing a president.
- I expect my president to protect me. What about our harbors, people?!?!
Upholding the Constitution
- This may well be the most important of all.