Thursday, January 03, 2008

Do Ya Wanna Caucus With Me?

So I saw The Color Purple musical in L.A. last night with my friend/ex who works for a local politician. The musical was great.

So was the conversation prior to the show. While he's not being sent to Iowa, he is going to New Hampshire for presidential primary work this weekend with the staff of the politician. They all gotta help their candidate.

Which leads me to tonight's caucus events in Iowa. I had dreams all night about the caucus outcome. I guess I like politics a little much... or just excited that we're counting down the last year of the current regime.

Anyway... I'm undecided. I'm happy with all the three frontrunners on the Democratic side, and so yeah, I'm a Democrat. I think you knew.

Though I am undecided, I have been sporting a bumper sticker for one candidate. I have been leaning toward HER since there was speculation she would be running a couple years ago. Hillary Clinton.

But my undecidedness comes in this form. Idealism versus practicality.

Idealistically, I would love to see a woman or black person become president. Heck, we deserve it and are ready. Thus, I'm straddling the Clinton and Obama line. In terms of experiences, I feel like I have a firmer grasp of Clinton's experiences and positions, mostly due to her visibility for the past fifteen years. But I also like the feeling of change that Obama seems to talk in his stump speeches, though I've only really known about him in the past year or so.

Overall, I really like John Edwards... and his wife Elizabeth. They are likeable to me. And I like the fight for the working family mantra they've embraced. If I voted/decided to vote just on who I really like, it would be Edwards.

So that's my idealism on all three.

My practicality side says... Democrats needs to win the presidency, and ultimately the party needs a candidate who can realistically win a national election. As much as things have changed socially, I'm skeptical about a person of color having a chance to win a national election. I'm still skeptical about a woman having a chance, but I think that chance is a little more plausible.

Which leads me to think... who can run against and win against the conservative Repub machine. I think the Clintons (and yeah, I kinda put them together in a package deal) have that chance because they've done it before. They seem to know how to win elections. I think Edwards could too. He just seems really smart and personable.

Last night before the musical I watched a story on CBS Evening News w/Katie Couric. An interesting voting trend the story noted... in Iowa, a lot of undecided Repubs and those unhappy with the Repub candidates are leaning Obama.

So of course, the conspiracy theorist side of me thought... what if this recent surge in Obama's numbers in Iowa is because of Repubs thinking/knowing the same thing... if Obama is the eventual Democratic nominee, there's the national election handed over to Repubs again. And then the Repubs win again.

Again, I think as much as things have changed... there's all those red states that I just can't see embracing candidate of color. Not to mention, I still have women students who say their dads, husbands, brothers tell them who to vote for when they ask who to vote for (it's called empowerment... learn and decide for yourself, not your dad's or husband's opinion!)

I don't know. That's why I'm undecided. Luckily, California's primary is a month away. And depending on how Iowa and New Hampshire go for the candidates, my choices may be narrowed down and I'll have only one or two candidates to choose.

Thank God I'm not living in Iowa. But I imagine that's how my caucus conversation would go if I were going to a caucus meeting in Iowa tonight.

It all comes down to idealism vs practicality for me. But I'd be happy with any of the three Democratic frontrunners, Clinton, Edwards, or Obama.

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