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The Left View

By Larry Gross · October 29th, 2008 · Living Out Loud
When taking walks in my neighborhood in Westwood, I see political signs for U.S. Rep. Steve Chabot all over the place.

I’m currently living in what’s considered a Republican and conservative community, but apparently we have a few Democrats here too. It does my heart good to see Steve Driehaus signs scattered here and there.

I like the Driehaus television commercials. He often ends his TV.ads by saying, “Steve Chabot’s not a bad guy. He’s just been in Washington too long.”

No kidding. Chabot may be alright, but his love affair with President Bush over the past eight years has been frustrating to me. He’s basically rubber-stamped everything this president has wanted, including this made-up war in Iraq. Chabot has been Bush’s sheep.

I’ll never get over this Iraq war, never get over the fact that we were told a pack of lies to get into it. Thousands of our young men and women have died, and if Bush is reelected on Nov. 4, the killing continues.

No, I didn’t make a mistake by saying if Bush is reelected. When it comes to war, John McCain is no different than what we got now. Chabot supports this. I don’t.

I don’t want four more years of killing. I want this useless war to end. I want change. I want Barack Obama to be president.

Of course, it’s not all about war. Our economy’s in the toilet. We’re heading toward a recession that could turn into a depression.

How many more banks will we have to bail out? Who’s going to protect the middle class?

In last week’s “The Right View” column, Doug Taylor talked about his respect for McCain and his experience. I share that respect when it comes to his military record and what he went through as a prisoner of war in Vietnam, but that’s where my respect ends. A war hero doesn’t necessarily make a good president, especially when the economy tanks.

Obama has showed a cool head during this economic crisis. He supported the bailout but wants accountability on Wall Street. He also wants this bailout to help regular people in keeping their homes. He wants less stress on the middle class. McCain doesn’t seem to know who the middle class is.

The reality is McCain doesn’t want you thinking about the economy. He wants you to be distracted by bullshit that doesn’t matter.

Take the Bill Ayers “issue.” Ayers was an anti-war activist 40 years ago, and McCain wants you to believe Obama has extreme ties to this “terrorist.”

Of course, there aren’t any real ties at all. Both Obama and Ayers served on an anti-poverty board in Chicago between 2000 and 2002 — that’s about it. Taking this non issue and turning it into some kind of scare tactic against Obama shows how desperate McCain’s campaign is.

This desperation has made McCain not put country first — his campaign slogan — but rather himself. He’s resorted to countless hateful attack ads on Obama, most of which don’t come close to being true.

McCain will do or say anything to get himself elected. These aren’t the actions of a maverick or even an alright guy like Chabot. It’s more like a scared squirrel, darting here and there and everywhere trying to find his nuts. Sadly, this campaign has cost McCain his integrity.

But, if miracles do happen — namely, if McCain can pull this off and become president — I can’t help but wonder if Chabot will rubberstamp everything McCain wants just like he did with President Bush.

My guess is he would. On his campaign Web site, Chabot states that McCain made an “excellent choice” in picking Sarah Palin as his running mate. He says she’ll bring a “fresh perspective to Washington.”

Really? A fresh perspective?

Palin doesn’t know what the Bush Doctrine is. She doesn’t read newspapers. She knows nothing about the Supreme Court. She doesn’t support abortion even if a woman is raped. She thinks she has foreign policy experience because she can see Russia from her house.

I could bring up this Troopergate business or her $150,000 wardrobe, but maybe you see my point.

This isn’t the kind of perspective we need. Palin is a joke. She might get my attention if she winked at me in a downtown bar, but that’s even doubtful. She’ not very smart, and imagining her as vice president makes my skin crawl.

Speaking of skin crawling, I have a question for you, Congressman Chabot.

I think you would agree that being president has to be a hard job. John McCain is 72 years old. What if he dies in office?

Do you really want winking Sarah Palin with her hands on the nuclear codes? Do ya?

I don’t. Obama would be an excellent president, but if the unthinkable happened, I would feel much better with the steady hand of Joe Biden taking over.

I can’t wait for this election to be done with. Come Nov. 4, I’ll be voting for change. I’ll be voting for Barack Obama for president.

As far as returning Steve Chabot to Congress, I’ve never voted for him despite the fact that he’s not a bad guy, and I’m not about to start now. Steve Driehaus will get my vote.

Change can be a wonderful thing. After this horrible past eight years of Bush/McCain and here locally with sheep Chabot, I’m more than ready for it.

CONTACT LARRY GROSS: lgross@citybeat.com.



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