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Hillary Clinton, James Dobson, Presidential election, Rudy Giuliani, social conservatives, third-party

>Conservative Christian leaders to vote third party…maybe.

>By now most of you have probably already heard James Dobson and others talk about the possibility of voting for a third-party candidate if the Republican nominee is not fully pro-choice.

I strongly disagree with this thinking. Voting third-party based on principle may cause some one to have warm fuzzies inside and make them feel better about themselves but in reality it is just hurting the causes that you believe in even more. The best way to get some results on abortion is with the Supreme Court. The next President of the United States will more than likely have to fill in one or two spots on the court. When it comes right down to it, would you rather have Hillary Clinton appointing people like Ruth Bader Ginsburg or would you rather have Rudy Giuliani appointing strict constructionist judges in the mold of Scalia, Thomas, Alito, and John Roberts?

The Anchoress has a blog post on this subject that really makes some great points about why it hurts our causes more voting for a third-party candidate (and ensuring a Hillary Clinton win) than it is to vote for a Republican candidate such as Rudy Giuliani. Instead of making the arguments against voting third-party, I’ll just direct you to her article. In my opinion, she really hits the nail on the head so I highly recommend you read her article. Let me know what you guys think about it. You can find it here.

Update

The Christian conservative leaders have already begun to back off of their threat to vote for a third-party candidate. You can read about it here.

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Discussion

22 thoughts on “>Conservative Christian leaders to vote third party…maybe.

  1. >I’ll bet you that pint.I think this campaign will see a redoubled effort to corral the squirrelly “base” voters. In ’04, everyone from my Marxist colleagues to my little brother accused me of “helping Bush” by voting third party. I got anti-Nader emails almost every day in the month before the general election. I can only imagine that the Internet-capable, multi-million-dollar major factions will spend more time and money, not less, to try to strongarm folks like me out of their third party votes. Of course, it didn’t work on me in ’04, but Nader also didn’t get nearly the number of votes he did in ’00. I’m going to bet you that pint of Guiness that an ABH (anybody but Hillary) campaign will silence the evangelical third party just as effectively or more so than the ABB (anybody but Bush) campaign silenced Nader in ’04.

    Posted by Nathan P. Gilmour | November 2, 2007, 10:01 am
  2. >I think a strong 3rd and possible 4th party may emerge quickly after the Rep and Dem have selected their respective candidates. What I mean is that there will be 3rd party candidates for both the Dem and the Rep side: (a moral and social conserv issue/right wing republican; and a far left social and traditional liberal Democrat). This is simply my conjecture of it anyways. Both the Rep and Dem candidates will most definitely try to pursuade the public that they are primarily centrist. The majority of registered voters, for the most part, lie in the middle. The Dem and Rep candidates will battle for the centrist votes, while the 3rd party candidates will battle for the fringe centrist on their perspective left and right sides. I foresee the next president winning the election with less than 40% of the popular vote. Ok, who wants to bet me a pint of Guiness on this one ? Any takers?

    Posted by hylander | November 2, 2007, 2:33 am
  3. >By the way, are there any conservative 3rd party candidates that are actually being talked about at this time?Not that I know of. Nader and Bloomsburg are the only 3rd-party candidates that I’ve heard about so far.

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 17, 2007, 3:00 pm
  4. >By the way, are there any conservative 3rd party candidates that are actually being talked about at this time?

    Posted by Jeff Wright | October 17, 2007, 2:41 am
  5. >We all will have to vote our conscience. Granted, there are most definitely some candidates better than others (on paper), but I agree that God can use anyone. I am of the strict constructionists camp, so what Rudy has to say does impress me on the one issue at hand. We will need to carefully weigh each of the issues and exercise discernment for the long term results that will, in effect, cause the most impact socially, economically, morally, ethically, philosophically, politically etc. Will it come to choosing the lesser of two evils? I am not certain at this point as it is too early in the race and there is simply too much information to digest. But, time is certainly of the essence, because in about 100 days, there will be 1 Republican candidate, and most likely 1 Democrat candidate, and a possible 3rd and 4th party candidate to choose from in next years general election.

    Posted by hylander | October 17, 2007, 2:38 am
  6. >”For what it’s worth, I never have trusted this code word.”That’s fine. You’re probably right but that’s gets us into another issues because that applies to the campaign promises of all the candidates, not just Guiliani. By the way, I’m not a Guiliani supporter or detractor. I will vote for Thompson or Romney or Huckabee in the primary. Or Buchanan. 😉

    Posted by Jeff Wright | October 17, 2007, 2:24 am
  7. >Just to add one thing, I think that one main thing that strict constructionists believe is that it is thejudges job to interpret the law, not make it.

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 16, 2007, 7:00 pm
  8. >I don’t know if this helps or not.Judicial Interpretation

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 16, 2007, 6:55 pm
  9. >Yes, but social contructionism seems to be different from strict constructionism.

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 16, 2007, 6:50 pm
  10. >Wizzle:Fair enough. But it seems to me that you didn’t really agree with either of the main candidates about anything. I think that many Republicans, people lean to the right, etc. can find many issues where they agree with him. He may not be the ideal candidate but I’ll take him over Hillary Clinton any day.I think you’re right that there are people in this world who will go Republican no matter what and people who will go Democrat no matter what. (I suppose I might be one of those cranky souls who won’t go with either no matter what.) In my own circle of acquaintance, and remember that I work in a university English department, I know far more single-issue, anti-abortion Republicans than I do single-issue Democrats of any sort. My hunch is that a Giuliani or McCain nomination will have more of an effect than folks think, and I don’t know that the effect will come mainly from the Dobson listeners.Jeff:I ask again, is Guiliani a pro-life candidate if he appoints Supreme Court nominees who are strict constructionists, ie. committed to overturning Roe v. Wade? If not, why not?For what it’s worth, I never have trusted this code word. One reason is that it seems to have surfaced around the time Bush started nominating justices; I’d never heard or read the phrase when Thomas or Ginsberg were appointed. Another is that in every other field, “constructionist” means “being built as we go and relative to one’s situation.” Wikipedia on ConstructionismI won’t trust the news networks (neither television nor radio) so long as they won’t explain to me exactly what folks are constructing. Does anyone have a decent resource on what judicial constructionism actually means? (I don’t want punditry, by the way. I want something from an actual law professor.)

    Posted by Nathan P. Gilmour | October 16, 2007, 5:57 pm
  11. >Check out this clip:Will Introduces Giuliani At CPAC Does what George Will say make you reconsider whether or not you would support Rudy Giuliani if he were to win the GOP nomination?

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 16, 2007, 5:38 pm
  12. >Here’s a somewhat related article that I recommend reading.Three Good Options for The RightBy George F. Will (a highly respected conservative)

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 16, 2007, 5:16 pm
  13. >What makes a president a “pro-life” president? Their personal views on federal laws related to abortion? Their theological positions related to life issues? Or are their actions related to life issues what would make them pro-life or not? What I’m getting at is this: if the Mayor appoints SC justices that are committed to overturning Roe v. Wade, would this not make him a pro-life president even if he personally supports “a woman’s right to choose”? All we can go on at this point is what they say they will do and he is saying that he will appoint strict constructionists. That code word reveals much. If evangelicals are going to judge a candidate’s acceptibility based on the candidate’s personal philosophy concerning life issues apart from how they will actually use their executive powers regarding abortion then evangelicals need to come out and declare that they will not accept a Romney nomination. They need to declare they will go 3rd party if Romney gets the nomination. The Mormon theology he more than likely holds to would be very troubling to evangelicals, would it not? What are his personal views concerning the Trinity? Aren’t we saying that the candidate’s personal beliefs must line up with evangelical dogma? If that’s our criteria we need to apply it fairly and not just to one issue. I ask again, is Guiliani a pro-life candidate if he appoints Supreme Court nominees who are strict constructionists, ie. committed to overturning Roe v. Wade? If not, why not?

    Posted by Jeff Wright | October 15, 2007, 11:02 pm
  14. >Then do you agree with me that Anchoress’s logic on this point is a bit squirrelly? Her point with the Zaccheus analogy (there I go with analogies again) is that Zaccheus was effective precisely because he was so “bad.” (Looking back, she didn’t actually use Zaccheus, but I figure he’s part of a similar story.) That doesn’t resonate, I don’t think, with the argument that you articulate and she dances around, namely that a small devil is better than a small angel if one must choose between a small angel who can’t beat the big devil and a small devil who can.Ah, alright then I see where you are coming from and agree with you. Her logic here is a little shakey. However, I still believe that she brings up good points as to why it is better to vote for some one like Giuliani then to vote third-party (which would help Hillary). Another point that I would like to bring up is the primaries. The primaries are where people need to get out and make their voices heard. At this point, I plan on voting for Huckabee. If he doesn’t win the nomination I am not just going to take my ball and go home. I will stand united behind the nominee in hopes that Hillary will be defeated. I know others may disagree with me though. Hard saying, because I don’t, but knowing myself as I know myself, I don’t think I would have voted for Gore or Kerry, and when Bush, in the 2000 presidential debates, started bragging about how many people he had executed as governor of Texas, he pretty much disqualified himself from my confidence that he would wield prudently the reins of history’s most expensive military.So I think I still would have gone third party.Fair enough. But it seems to me that you didn’t really agree with either of the main candidates about anything. I think that many Republicans, people lean to the right, etc. can find many issues where they agree with him. He may not be the ideal candidate but I’ll take him over Hillary Clinton any day.

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 15, 2007, 10:49 pm
  15. >Now on the other point, I believe God can use anybody for his purposes. God can use people whose intentions are evil and use them for good. Now, does that mean that I should vote for Clinton because God could use her for good. No. If I followed that logic, I couldn’t in good conscience vote for anybody. I mean how could vote against somebody that God could use, right?Then do you agree with me that Anchoress’s logic on this point is a bit squirrelly? Her point with the Zaccheus analogy (there I go with analogies again) is that Zaccheus was effective precisely because he was so “bad.” (Looking back, she didn’t actually use Zaccheus, but I figure he’s part of a similar story.) That doesn’t resonate, I don’t think, with the argument that you articulate and she dances around, namely that a small devil is better than a small angel if one must choose between a small angel who can’t beat the big devil and a small devil who can. There wasn’t some uber-sinner that Jesus was choosing the little sinners to defeat; Jesus was not all that concerned that any uber-sinner was going to whup him if he didn’t enlist the little sinners’ help.Ok, but what if you lived in say PA or Florida or Ohio? Then what would have happened?Hard saying, because I don’t, but knowing myself as I know myself, I don’t think I would have voted for Gore or Kerry, and when Bush, in the 2000 presidential debates, started bragging about how many people he had executed as governor of Texas, he pretty much disqualified himself from my confidence that he would wield prudently the reins of history’s most expensive military.So I think I still would have gone third party.

    Posted by Nathan P. Gilmour | October 15, 2007, 9:28 pm
  16. >Nate said:If you don’t like the analogies bit, how about the assertion that God can use pro-abortion Giuliani to do God’s work but not pro-abortion Clinton? I’d like to read your take on that. One of the points of the article seems to be that God can use anyone. Why not Clinton?Well, it’s not that I don’t like the anology stuff…it’s just that I’ll leave it to others to critique stuff like that. Now on the other point, I believe God can use anybody for his purposes. God can use people whose intentions are evil and use them for good. Now, does that mean that I should vote for Clinton because God could use her for good. No. If I followed that logic, I couldn’t in good conscience vote for anybody. I mean how could vote against somebody that God could use, right? When I vote, I take into consideration views and policies, character, etc. I feel that Hillary would be detrimental to those who wish to see less abortions in this country. Like I said, it is very likely that the next President will appoint 1 or 2 people to the Supreme Court? I would rather have a strict constructionist on the court (like Giuliani has vowed to do) than another person like Ruth Bader Ginsburg (whom Bill Clinton put on the SC). Of course, abortion is not the only important issue. I think I would be hard-pressed to find very many issues where I agree with Hillary. That’s not the case when it comes to Giuliani.Nate said:Also, with respect to Nader, I cast one of those votes in Indiana (absentee) and the other in Georgia. Unless my vote actually counted for around thirty percent of the population of either state (which would have been quite good in either case–perhaps someone other than the blue capitalists and the red capitalists would have gotten some public funding), I neither added nor detracted a drop from either red ocean.Ok, but what if you lived in say PA or Florida or Ohio? Then what would have happened?

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 15, 2007, 9:00 pm
  17. >If you don’t like the analogies bit, how about the assertion that God can use pro-abortion Giuliani to do God’s work but not pro-abortion Clinton? I’d like to read your take on that. One of the points of the article seems to be that God can use anyone. Why not Clinton?Also, with respect to Nader, I cast one of those votes in Indiana (absentee) and the other in Georgia. Unless my vote actually counted for around thirty percent of the population of either state (which would have been quite good in either case–perhaps someone other than the blue capitalists and the red capitalists would have gotten some public funding), I neither added nor detracted a drop from either red ocean.

    Posted by Nathan P. Gilmour | October 15, 2007, 8:36 pm
  18. >I was impressed. Basically, I feel the same exact way as she does. I didn’t really find any disagreements when I read her piece. I won’t pick on the analogies…that’s not my forte. :PI figured that you wouldn’t be too impressed since you voted for Nader the last 2 elections (therefore helping Bush). I still haven’t heard anything that would change my mind that it would be more harmful to vote 3rd-party (which would help Hillary) than it would be to vote for someone like Giuliani.

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 15, 2007, 7:12 pm
  19. >I read the Anchoress piece, and I wasn’t all that impressed. (That’s a certain sign that she’s going to show up here and blast me, isn’t it? 😉 )She juggled (with limited success) two analogies that just don’t add up to a coherent overall picture. 1) Rudy Giuliani is to Jim Dobson as Zaccheus is to the Pharisees.2) Ross Perot is to George H.W. Bush as Candidate X is to Rudi Giuliani.She begs a few questions with these: Was Jesus endorsing Zaccheus to wield more governmental power than he wielded before? Were the Pharisees concerned mainly because with Jesus’ endorsements Zaccheus might become consul of Rome? Might Candidate X, once named, be a better governor of a nation-state beyond questions of abortion (as, I would argue, Perot likely would not be)? Why is Giuliani more like Zaccheus than are Clinton and Obama?Beyond that, Anchoress invokes providence to say that Giuliani might turn out to be a good president after paragraphs about the mortal danger that a few third-party votes might make Clinton president. (I assume that, in the terms of the article, Clinton is also a “sinner,” but Anchoress never addresses that.)Finally, every argument in the piece seems to point a bit too directly to one active conclusion for A. Giuliani is like Zaccheus, therefore don’t vote third party. Candidate X is like Ross Perot, therefore don’t vote third party. God can use any politician for good, therefore don’t vote third party. As I said, I’m not that impressed with the piece. I’ve voted third party in the last two elections and will likely do so again.

    Posted by Nathan P. Gilmour | October 15, 2007, 6:59 pm
  20. >Another quick comment that I would like to add is this…I wish that Dobson and Co. would stop acting like they speak for everyone. They most certainly do not. I will take into consideration what they say, but I am a big boy and I will make my own decisions (whether it lines up with what Dobson says or not). I think that they think they have more power than they really do.

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 15, 2007, 5:04 pm
  21. >It’s ok to disgree about this…many good people are going to come to different conclusions when it comes to this. Did you read the article on The Anchoress blog? What did you think about it?

    Posted by J.Wizzle | October 15, 2007, 4:59 pm
  22. >Voting third-party based on principle make some one have warm fuzzies inside and make them feel better about themselves but in reality it is just hurting the causes that you believe in even more.I strongly disagree with this thinking. It’s not “warm fuzzies”. I believe that a Giuliani will do more damage than a Hillary. Further, when is it right to compromise principle for pragmatism? Oh, wait, that’s what the Church is full of these days, isn’t it?Yeah, I’ll definitely have to blog about this.

    Posted by Stan | October 15, 2007, 4:34 pm

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