I’ve been delinquent in posting to this blog, for which I apologize. I’ve had too many other things going on. I still do, but I thought I’d take a break in order to tell you how I plan to vote. I guess you could call these my endorsements, except in most cases I don’t endorse most of what the candidates stand for.
I may as well start with the most important one: for President, I’m voting for Mitt Romney. I’ve already caught some grief for this decision, mostly from my son. Why am I, a libertarian of almost 50 years, not supporting Gary Johnson? Don’t I know that Romney can’t be trusted? Don’t I know he’s flip-flopped, sometimes two or three times, on just about every issue? Don’t I know that even when he runs as a conservative, he runs as a big-government conservative? That he favors a big military and foreign intervention?
My answer is, yes, yes, yes and yes. But I have a very compelling reason for supporting Romney, except “supporting” is to put it too mildly. Actually I’m hoping for an overwhelming, smashing, landslide Romney victory tomorrow. A Romney victory is our last and only chance to get rid of Obamacare.
Do I trust Romney to do this? Absolutely not. I don’t trust him any farther than I can throw an elephant. I feel the same way about his promises to deregulate and cut taxes. But I trust Obama completely: I trust him to try to tax more, to regulate more, and most of all I trust him to veto any bill repealing Obamacare. At least with Romney, we have a fighting chance at getting rid of it. And, who knows? During the campaign Democrats were claiming that a President Romney would be a captive of the Tea Party. Maybe they’re right. I sure hope they’re right.
I know Gary Johnson is also against Obamacare, and his positions on taxes, regulation, foreign policy — on just about everything, in fact — are much closer to my views than Romney’s positions. However, the stark, unavoidable fact is that on January 21, 2013 the President will be either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney. Four more years of Obama would take this country to a place from which, short of a revolution, we might never be able to return. Mitt Romney at least would buy us some more time.
For the Congressional races, House and Senate, I’ll probably be voting for the Republican candidates: Nancy Jacobs for the 2nd District House seat and Dan Bongino for the U. S. Senate.
Jacobs is a no-brainer. I’m a little bothered by her support for requiring employers to use E-Verify when hiring employees, but she is solid on just about every other issue. And best of all, as a state senator she did not prostitute herself, as many of her fellow Republicans did, and voted against the gambling expansion bill that is on the ballot as Question 7 (more on that below). I like the views of the Libertarian candidate, Leo Dymowski, but Jacobs has the best chance of defeating Dutch Ruppersberger.
Bongino is the reason for my “probably”. The Libertarian candidate is Dean Ahmad, whom I knew many years ago. Furthermore, he wants to replace taxes on production with taxes on the location value of land, a position I have held for many years. Bongino’s background as a former Secret Service agent worries me a little. However, he is running against Benjamin Cardin. I’ve never much agreed with Cardin, but I didn’t mind him that much, either. He once helped out my bicycling club, and he was a friend of the late Ron Smith and a frequent guest on Ron’s show. But his campaign positions sound just like Obama’s, right down to “having millionaires/billionaires pay a fair share” — a phrase that makes me want to puke. If I conclude Cardin is unbeatable anyway, I’ll vote for Ahmad. If there’s a chance of defeating Cardin, I’ll vote for Bongino.
Now, for the controversial ballot issues:
Question 4 — in-state tuition for children of illegal immigrants. I’m voting against it. This law applies only to two-year community colleges (not state colleges and universities) and has so many restrictions in it — graduation from a Maryland high school, filing (but not paying) income taxes, intention to apply for permanent residency, registration with selective service — that there are probably fewer than 100 people in Maryland who would qualify under it, and fewer than that who would choose to take advantage of it. Fiscally, the impact of this law is almost nil. It was a salvo fired in the culture wars to bolster Gov. Martin O’Malley’s reputation as a progressive as he prepares to run for President in 2016. I would like to see him embarrassed.
Question 5 — Congressional redistricting. I’m voting “no”. Here’s the map. Need I say more?
Question 6 — “Gay” marriage. I’m voting “no” on this one, too. I discussed same-sex marriage from a Libertarian perspective two years ago on this site. I cannot, for the life of me, understand why gay people, after struggling for years to get the government out of their bedrooms, are so eager to invite it back in. I have even more trouble trying to figure out why so many libertarians — including the Fox network’s resident libertarians John Stossel and Andrew Napolitano — support “gay” marriage. Well, not all gays, and not all libertarians. Justin Raimondo, the gay libertarian who edits the antiwar.com website, understands the issue very clearly. But he’s the exception. Few gays (or straight people, for that matter) understand what “civil marriage” actually does: it imposes a state-enforced framework on what should be a voluntary, contractual relationship.
Question 7 — expansion of legal gambling. If you live in Maryland, this is the question you’ve been receiving five or six robocalls every day about. I’m voting “no”. This is another one I have to explain to my libertarian friends. Don’t I believe gambling should be legal? Yes. But this isn’t about legalizing gambling. Legalized gambling means I should be able to start a gambling casino in my living room. This bill grants a monopoly to well-heeled, politically-connected corporate interests. But what about the revenue the state will get? The more revenue the state gets from gambling, the less they have to tax people. Frankly, I don’t want the state getting revenue from any source. All they’ll do is waste it. Besides, they’ll try to get more taxes out of us anyway, with or without gambling revenue.
There are some other, less controversial, questions on the ballot. I’ll probably just ignore them.