The EFM Feature

After my brother Charles’ prodding, I thought it appropriate for me to rear my ugly head on EFM again. Trust me, it’s a nice break from trying to figure out the parol evidence rule (don’t ask).
Anyhow, I just got back from casting what will surely prove to be the decisive vote for Gov. Romney in Florida. It’s funny, I’ve now voted in three very different places–Massachusetts, Northern VA and Florida–and I swear the same sweet old lady has been working at every polling station I’ve visited. She’s like Santa Claus! Seriously though, I get a little burst of civic pride when I think about poll workers. (Mostly this helps me mask the fact that I’m too lazy to ever volunteer myself….)
Anyway, in lieu of regular blogging on this site, you all will be glad to know that I have been ruthlessly seeking to persuade my fellow law students to support the Governor. I may have even succeeded with one or two. My conversations have been very revealing, particularly since the circumstances here have led to an either/or debate whereas prior states had to deal with a small army of purportedly viable candidates.
Two things have been most interesting to me:
1. That three-legged conservatives are clearly in the Governor’s camp, particularly now that Fred has left the race. We’ve seen this in national polls, but it has been interesting to actually talk to folks about their transition. This tells me that Gov. Romney has done a good job making the case for his conservative credentials, even as Sen. McCain and others have trotted out the flip-flop meme.
2. That Republicans are not fooled by John McCain’s attempts to define himself as the conservative in the race. Nearly every McCain supporter I’ve talked to here has readily acknowledged that McCain has, more or less, liberal tendencies on a whole host of issues. These Republicans think that after Bush–they always say that–we need a new kind of Republicanism, a sort of Rockefeller Part II. Despite my frustrations with the potential electoral results of this approach, I’m actually glad that folks are seeing the debate this way. I think it helps concentrate the mind. In the end, we are making a conscious, deliberate choice about the future of our party, one that will define it for the foreseeable future.
The choice is not between two conservative Republicans with similar visions for the country. The choice is between an honorable man whose instincts consistently lead him to value pragmatism over principle and an honorable man who understands that pragmatism is meaningless without principle. It’s between a man who has utilized class-warfare rhetoric to denounce tax cuts and a man whose business experience has taught him that low taxes are the lifeblood of a strong economy. It’s between a man who admits to knowing little about the economy, and a man who made a living by understanding the economy. It’s between a man who moves his lips the right way on social issues–but never makes a sound–and a man who has displayed a willingness to fight for the unborn, marriage and the family in general. It’s between a man who has spent his entire professional career in Washington, and a man who has spent his career outside of Washington fixing everything he could get his hands on.
My fellow Floridians and I may or may not give you the right candidate tonight, but we’ve at least helped frame the debate. To our friends voting on Feb 5: Choose wisely.


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