Can we all live with how the elections were handled by
the voters and the media?
So far, we have managed to survive not only last week's election,
but also the so-called "bitter division" of our
country that all the pundits keep talking about.
Americans turned out in record numbers for the presidential
election because they saw a nation still in danger and not
because of any so-called division. There's no question many
of us have a different view of life than some of our neighbors,
but that doesn't mean that we're divided in such a negative
My years as a radio talk show host unfortunately taught me
that too many voting age folks are not only UNinformed and
MISinformed about politics and government, but they are lemmings
that leach onto whatever sounds familiar and somewhat comfortable.
They seek a warm and fuzzy feeling from any source - - a labor
union, a church, or an issues group - - that allows them to
FEEL involved and important. I know that sounds awful and
superficial, but that's exactly what some people have become
in this country, awfully ignorant about how government affects
them and superficial about what they should do about it.
Voters turned out in record numbers and President Bush won
the highest popular vote of any president in history because
people didn't want this country falling into the hands of
a man like John Kerry. They also preferred a classy Laura
Bush as First Lady and her steadfast support of the President,
versus Teresa Heinz and her ambivalence about even being involved
in a presidential campaign. The choice for Americans was easy:
a class lady versus a foul-mouthed rich wench, pure and simple.
Bush's win, his opponents say, was not the landslide victory
of Ronald Reagan in percentages, but since more than 125 million
voted, it was a clear sign they wanted the immediate future
of this nation in the hands of a man with qualities similar
to each of us, despite whatever our political differences
might be. We are basically all the same: freedom loving, nice,
with our own personal and sometimes petty prejudices (some
of them harmless), respectful, open to new ideas, fiercely
protective of our families, always willing to give people
a second chance, etc.
Bush won in what his supporters see as a historic victory.
Most Americans like the fact that Freedom IS on the march
in a troubled part of the world and girls are back in school
in Afghanistan and women there and in Iraq can finally vote.
That's why we exist here in the U.S., to not only enjoy freedom
but to pass it on. Of course some of you disagree with this
notion, but that's just a difference of opinion, not a division
that should be tearing our country apart.
Moral trust and confidence were the biggest issues for voters
who wanted a leader they could relate to, someone whose decision-making
they liked. As Americans, the results clearly show we're looking
for wisdom and honor in a president, not muddled political
Many Democrats claimed the Bush campaign was just about fear,
about scaring voters away from John Kerry. If this campaign
was about fear, it was the fear of Americans that terrorism
could come to our shores again. It was the fear that John
Kerry was NOT the right man for the job, and his inexperienced
running mate, John Edwards, had even less to offer.
Even the Brits started acting like some Democrats, trying
to force their dogmatic views on American voters. The Daily
Mirror in London wondered out loud how 59-million Americans
could be such idiots and vote for President Bush. They apparently
still don't understand we don't give a damn what they think
and haven't cared about their opinions for about 228 years.
We left them behind in the late 1700's for a reason. We wanted
our freedom to live and think and vote under OUR rules, not
It's also interesting how the U.S. media found itself on the
defensive this election, trying not to repeat the mistakes
of 2000. When it became obvious that the early exit polls
were way off base, most of the national media knew something
unusual, almost revolutionary, was happening. They backed
off and bent over backwards not to jump at conclusions as
the polls closed.
The specific numbers behind the results help flesh out what
happened on Election Day.
According to CNN, 22% of voters said Moral Values were the
main reason they went to vote. Another 20% said the economy
and jobs were the key, 19% cited terrorism, and only 15% said
the war in Iraq was their major concern.
The moral values magnet has Democrats crying foul, but it's
clear that 61% of Bush voters attend church, compared to only
39% of Kerry's backers. In looking at the moral values issue
and its ties to religiosity, John Kerry tried to get double
points for being both a Catholic and a Jew. While Kerry won
74% of the Jewish vote to Bush's 25%, Kerry lost the much
larger Catholic base to the President. The large Catholic
block provided a crucial 52% turnout for Bush to Kerry's 47%,
proving that religion still has a place in politics.
Latinos, long a stable staple of the Democrat Party, also
voted in higher numbers than ever before for President Bush.
Although Kerry got 53% of the Latino vote to Bush's 44%, the
President's Latino vote count beats Ronald Reagan's 1984 record
tally of 40%. Why? Perhaps it's the high number of Latino
entrepreneurs and/or the Latino community ties to our military.
The concession speeches from the Democrats were also noteworthy
and still have many people scratching their heads.
John Edwards and John Kerry played Bad Cop, Good Cop. Edwards
was first to speak and he promised that the political war
in America will continue "in the union halls, in the
churches." Then Kerry called for unity and working together.
What a contrast. Who was talking the real talk? Were we witnessing
a mastery of the flip-flop, laying out completely opposite
themes and expecting Americans to accept totally contradictory
concepts? John Edwards sounded like the trial lawyer that
he is, preparing us for filing an appeal.
The election is over and we now need to move forward with
life. While we are indeed fortunate to have the right to vote,
some people have forgotten that our electoral system is NOT
perfect and was never designed to be without some glitches.
It has its flaws and has always had flaws. No one promised
us a perfect, foolproof system, just the best that we could
develop as time went on. So many people apparently want to
go to court and overturn last week's results.
There is always room for improvement in using the best available
technology in our elections, but for now, let us focus on
fixing the things President Bush talked about in his acceptance
speech: Reforming the Byzantine tax code, social security,
and education, and helping the emerging democracies of Iraq
and Afghanistan, so they can defend their freedom. And certainly,
we need to make sure our service people will come home with
the honor they have earned in helping the oppressed rise to
experience new heights of freedom.
As President Bush reminded us, "we have one country,
one constitution and one future that binds us. When we come
together and work together, there is no limit to the greatness
Forget the so-called divisions. The political campaign has
ended and America must go forward with hope and faith.