Ok, so it is 3 weeks until the presidential election and I cannot decide who to vote for. Each candidate has aspects that I like and aspects that I dislike. In fact, each one has things that would make it virtually impossible for me to vote for them under normal circumstances. So, that leads to the question: Do I vote for none of them? Or, do I vote for the one who is the least evil? In other words, do I hold my nose while voting? What I've decided to do is to write up how I see the pros and cons of each candidate and see if I write myself into voting for one of them.
Let's start with President Obama. While I like the fact that he is trying to ensure the welfare of people through healthcare, training, etc., I fundamentally disagree with his position on abortion and (as mentioned before several times) his contraceptive mandate. I have taken a few quizzes and tend to agree with most with President Obama, but I do not think I can get past his support for abortion. I know that this may piss off alot of people, but I honestly do not see any circumstances where abortion should be legal. The only possibility is when the mother's life is endangered, but I think (and I could very easily be wrong here, so not a doctor) that even then every step should be taken to preserve the life of both rather than abort the baby.
As for Mitt Romney, the man has done so many flip-flops on issues and has twisted himself into such a pretzel to accomodate the Tea Party that I don't know what he truly believes anymore. I hope that he is sincere about his anti-abortion beliefs, but I don't know if I can believe it. Between these and his support of issues not congruent with Catholic social teaching (especially within his own family), I am very hard-pressed to vote for him either.
Then there is Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party. To be honest, I have never liked the Libertarian Party. The Libertarian Party (from everything I have read about them or learned from discussions), basically wants to reduce the government to a tremendously small size. While I admire the Party's stands on issues regarding election reform and other similar issues, I feel that they come too close to approaching anarchy. Not no government, but a government where the only rule is to not infringe on the rights of others, which is an unworkable practical government. In a perfect world where people are angels, it would work, but people are not angels. People are flawed and need some sort of guidance to choose what is right or wrong.
The next choice is Jill Stein of the Green Party. Here, I admire the social justice aspects and the dedication to political equality, I again choke on her beliefs in regard to abortion and other contraceptives. She seems to want to give on-demand access and government funding of these, which is far worse than President Obama's support. I must say that much of what she says I agree with.
Next, we have Virgil Goode of the Constitution Party. Virgil Goode is the only thoroughly pro-life candidate on the ballot. I like this, but what I do not like is that the Constitution Party is more or less the same as the Tea Party, only not within the Republican tent. As such, there are some differences, but many of the problems that I have with the Tea Party and the Libertarian Party are also applicable here.
Finally, we have Rocky Anderson (I believe of the Justice Party). Like Jill Stein, we have a man who is dedicated to political and social equality, which is good. On the abortion issue, he fully supports Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers. Once again, a candidate I cannot get behind as a result of this fundamental issue.
I know this may sound like I am a one-issue voter, but really I am not. It is just that this issue of abortion is one of the utmost importance to me. All life is sacred and must be protected from being unjustly taken. Without the right to life, no other right is worth a damn. That is why it forms the cornerstone of my voting patterns.
In closing, I do want to say that if you think I have misrepresented your favorite candidate/party, plese feel free to tell me so *IN A CIVIL MANNER*. Anyone who starts yelling, screaming, cursing, or being abusive will be ignored. I love having good, thought-provoking, civil discussions and welcome people to help me make-up my mind by making me think about things I haven't thought about before.
[Post edited at 3:15 pm on 10/16/12, in the Jill Stein paragraph changed "last choice" to "next choice", added paragraphs on Virgil Goode and Rocky Anderson per comment]