I certainly have my opinions, which should be no surprise to anyone — I’m not really fond of any of them. Unless you could come up with someone like a Howard Baker, there’s little hope that I would vote for a Republican presidential candidate for the rest of my lifetime.
I had a chance recently to talk with one of my long-time friends as we kept an eye on our daughters who were diving and splashing in the neighborhood swimming pool. Politics is one thing I generally don’t discuss with this friend — we love each other dearly, but know that we often part ways when it comes to political parties.
Turns out, we’re closer this election cycle to meeting in the middle than in prior elections. She was curious how I felt about Hillary Clinton and who I was favoring at the moment out of the Democratic candidates. I surprised her with my thoughts that, at least at the moment, I was leaning toward John Edwards. We both lamented that we’ve waited for a viable woman candidate for president for a long time, but neither of us are sure Hillary can pull it off.
Then, she surprised me with her thoughts on the GOP hopefuls — we both agreed that John McCain is “so done,” and she expressed her vehement opposition to Rudy Giuliani. If the choice for her comes down to a Democrat vs. Giuliani, she’s going with the Democrat.
And even more interesting is this — her husband, who at the moment favors Barack Obama, would change course in a heartbeat and lend support to Al Gore if he would just get in the race.
You think you know people. After a friendship of almost 20 years, I would never have guessed that such opinions would come from her and her family. So that makes me wonder what other surprises are out there? Polls are tracking voter support, but are they giving us the real picture about what people are thinking?
All I know is this — it is NO ONE’S race yet and won’t be for a while. I thought for many, there would never be a meeting of the political minds. But given the current state of 2008, this could be one for the history books in terms of cross-over voters.
What about you? Are you looking at the candidates in a way you never have before and surprising yourself about who you like and don’t like in the current field of wanna-be presidents?