Speaking only for myself and not for Ted (and obviously not for anyone else either), I’m among those who believes George W. Bush doesn’t merit re-election, though I supported and in fact actively advised his campaign the first time around. For some of the reasons, check the links in this Oct. 5 post. Foreign policy and defense blunders aside, the last thing I wanted was an administration combining aggressive social conservatism with uncontrolled spending and big new government programs.
Some Bush strategists have seemed confident that secular-minded supporters of small government and individual liberty — a rather important constituency, historically, within the Republican Party — would have nowhere to go this fall, since it’s not as if the record of Sen. John Kerry inspires confidence. But there are places to go, if not especially attractive ones. Prof. Richard Epstein of the University of Chicago School of Law, whose scholarship has inspired so many of us, says he plans to vote for the Libertarian nominee (true, as Megan McArdle points out, the nominee in question appears to be a barking moonbat, but the point of a Libertarian vote is to send a well understood protest message that stands apart from personalities). My favorite syndicated columnist, Steve Chapman of the Chicago Tribune, is actually planning to cast a Democratic presidential ballot for apparently the first time in his life (“Why I’m voting for John Kerry”, Oct. 24). Chapman quotes Cato’s Dave Boaz making perhaps the strongest argument that can be made for the Democrat on domestic policy: “Republicans wouldn’t give Kerry every bad thing he wants, and they do give Bush every bad thing he wants.” The Detroit News, meanwhile, editorializes in favor of none of the above. Finally, for balance, here’s a link to Coyote Blog, run by a small businessman who says he’s going to support Bush as a “single-issue voter” motivated by the subject matter of this website, that is to say, the need to reform the litigation system.