So Sen. Lindsay Graham of South Carolina is entering the presidential race (for all but sure) now, with his announcement to the press Sunday (ahead of a formal announcement to be made on home ground). He adds his name to an already absurd number of Republican candidates. But he may not be absurd. We’ll see.
I’m not good at political prognostications — I mean I thought Romney had a good chance both times he ran (regardless of his party and his politics, I just thought he looked and acted presidential and that he was moderate enough to appeal to both sides). But I think Graham has a whale of a chance.
His main theme right now is that the world is going to hell in a hand basket and that the U.S. needs to confront ISIS and other terrorists before they come (back) here. He also says that opposition he has faced in elections in his own state were because he has a record of cooperating with the other side — the Democrats. He thinks both parties need to work together more.
And on foreign affairs he boasts that he has been right more often than not. I don’t know, but at least he sounds confident. He is hawkish, I know, to say the least (but we are either a military power or we are not — and like Madeline Albright once said: what good is a military if I can’t use it, or something like that (is what she said). Okay, I just looked that up. She is quoted as asking Gen. Colin Powell, in reference to the Bosnia situation: “What’s the point of having this superb military that you’re always talking about if we can’t use it?” And I know I am off the track here, and we are using our military in the Middle East, but we keep telling everyone we are leaving (even though we don’t and just hang around to get more people killed).
No we don’t need a war hawk who just wants to flex muscle or make up for the war he missed or the one his daddy did not finish (I’m talking George W. who dodged Vietnam service and who may have sent our troops into Iraq mostly just to make up for his daddy not going all the way to Baghdad). But we do need someone who can use our military to the nation’s best advantage. And I am not touting Graham. I have to hear more of what he says he is all about.
Now I was a little sarcastic about his military bluster the last time I wrote about him. And I think too much militarism is dangerous, but I imagine a lot of voters have concern about the nation’s slip in its military advantage and power across the globe.
I should wait to hear more — much more — but it seems that Graham is a polished speaker who does not come across as someone just tossing out meaningless jingoism. Don’t know where he stands on social issues.
The advantage he or other Republicans might have this time around is that they are not running against an incumbent.
The advantage Graham has is he does not appear to be part of the clown car that makes up most of the remainder of the Republican field.
Yes, his stance on social issues will be interesting.
And as for some of the others, like I said in my previous post below:
I cringe every time I read that a presidential candidate is having to “bone up” on foreign policy. Why are we choosing between people ignorant of the world? We are the world’s superpower and yet some of our candidates are not up on foreign affairs.
We elected (well I did not but someone did) at least one president who did not have a clue about the world in general. His initials were George W. Bush. And now his supposedly more intelligent and cerebral brother is running and he seems to need to “bone up” on world affairs — he’s already stumbled on Iraq where his brother made such a mess.
But there are others too. Why are these people even in the race?
It’s all a sales job. They study talking points. Real debate and substance don’t stand a chance.
Am I cynical?
A president ignorant of the world can easily be led astray by someone with evil intentions (Cheney effect on W.).