People have said to me, “Good grief, we have 320 million people in the US and look at the choices we have for President!” True. On the one hand we have a fellow who was not my first, second, or third choice. He is brash, outspoken, politically incorrect, and one of the most successful businessmen in the US. On the other hand, we have a person who is contemptuous of the military, thinks Americans aren’t smart enough to manage their own lives, wants to raise taxes even when the economy is growing at an anemic 1%, was the worst Secretary of State in my lifetime, and jeopardizes our national secrets and lies about that to your face. But worst of all, she has become wealthy duping money out of Clinton Foundation donors or through pay-to-play schemes using her government position to give access to those donors for their support of her political objectives.
Trump’s and Clinton’s view of foreign policy, the economy, jobs, the role of government, and the Supreme Court could not be more different. It’s a stark contrast. A brash outsider versus a corrupt insider. He insults. She lies. He says what he’s thinking instead of thinking what he’s saying. She says what she thinks you want to hear and thinks what she says is truth, even when it isn’t. His mind arcs from one politically controversial comment or thought to another. Her mind “short circuits,” her way of justifying her lies.
So what’s a person to do. Voting for the Libertarian, the merits of the guy notwithstanding, is not an option. A Republican vote for him is a de facto vote for Hillary. (Please spare me your outrage. You won’t change my mind on that statement). A vote for the Green Party looney will hurt Hillary, so I hope a bunch of the Bernie folks do that.
So if you’re a Republican and not a member of the reflexive “Never Trump” club, and seriously trying to sort yourself out on what to do between Trump and an alternative to Trump, maybe this will help you.
We’re not just voting for a person; we’re voting for an administration. Much in the same way that a parliamentary system “votes in a government” who will control the policy of the country, maybe we should look at this strange election through that lens.
Trump worries voters on our side. But he has chosen a strong, effective, and conservative governor in Mike Pence to be his Vice President. That’s a good indication of the kind of solid people he will chose for his cabinet. (He should announce them soon, I might add). And that’s the point. It’s more than Trump. We’re also voting for a VP, and a cabinet, the senior people who will run the government, the administration that will choose judges, the policies that will be ended or begun, and the executive structure that will work with or oppose Congress. We are voting for an administration in the fullest sense of the word.
A Trump or Clinton administration will take dramatically different paths. He has made clear that he will work with the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society in choosing Supreme Court nominees. She will depend on the likes of left looney Elizabeth Warren to pick judges. He will lower taxes, Clinton will raise them. He will take on ISIS, she will be as weak as she was as Secretary of State. He will grow jobs; she will grow government. He will shift power back to the states. She will create a vortex of power from state capitols to Washington. That’s what their respective administrations will look like, folks.
So as you lament the choices, think beyond the two candidates before us. Because whom we elect will have a bigger impact than you may think beyond their personalities. You are electing an entire government. In that regard, this election may be the first that is truly about an entire approach to government, an administration. Don’t forget that when you ponder what to do in November…