Kerry's few words which may be debatable.
As I posted on here straight after the Vice-Presidential debate, I thought John Edwards snipe about Dick Cheney's daughter was unnecessay and unbecoming - but I thought Cheney's response was genious. Well, in the final Presidential debate Kerry raised it again in what I thought was a genuinely cynical and unnecessary way. It even elicited an exclamation of "oooh": not something this hardened political cynic is want to do often! As such it is no surprise the furore that it is engendering here and here and indeed all over the country.
To a certain extent they're right, that it's the best hand the Bush team have got after allowing Kerry back into the race over the debates but it is also right that Kerry shouldn't have said it.
Comments such as these make me feel very reticent indeed about supporting Kerry, even though, as is well documented here, I have great and grave problems with Bush's presidency:
-The pro-Kerry columnist Margaret Carlson put her finger on it, finding that Kerry and Edwards "realize that discussing Mary Cheney is a no-lose proposition: It highlights the hypocrisy of the Bush-Cheney position to Democrats while simultaneously alerting evangelicals to the fact that the Cheneys have an actual gay person in their household whom they apparently aren't trying to convert or cure." (Italics mine.)
-After the outspoken Lynne Cheney blasted this unsought intrusion of her daughter's private life as "a cheap and tawdry trick," the Kerry campaign hustled forward John Edwards's wife to charge that such motherly outrage "indicates a certain degree of shame with respect to her daughter's sexual preferences." That's a low blow in my book.
I have great issues deciding which side to come down on in this race. I was opposed to the War in Iraq but struggle to rationalise my dislike of 'neo-conservative' thinking. I am a fiscal conservative who believes in a balanced budget and a small state which neither candidate is offering. I believe in healthcare for all: something neither candidate is realistically offering. I believe the greatest challenge domestically facing my generation is the pensions system, something Bush is offering reform over, but I feel very uneasy around the religious zealots with whom Bush strongly associates. I agree with a lot of Kerry criticisms but when he suggests his 'plan' or alternatives I wince at the substance and the rhetoric. I find it hard to associate with many of the Michael Moore-like lefties who worship at the Kerry altar, and don't wish to see them in the ascendance, but I worry about the effect of a Bush Supreme Court on basic liberties and protection from the state. I naturally prefer an underdog fighting passionately with his back to the wall, but Bush has backed himself against the wall and fails to inspire himself.
I am normally very quick to castigate and criticise those who say "a pox on both their houses", but in this question I have a luxury I don't normally have. It's not a choice, thankfully, that I have to make. I don't have to choose between a President who has undertaken a war I wouldn't have done and run up massive deficits with a tax-and-spender who doesn't inspire supported by those who scare me. And I thank the Lord for that every day. Unless Kerry can find it in him to do the right thing and apologise for any offence he may have caused, then it may well be a case of "a pox on both their houses". Unless one of them does something to make me positively abhore them, then I may be climbing up the fence and taking in the view from the top for the first time in my life!
Watch this space...