By Scott Tibbs, January 23, 2008
Now that Fred Thompson has left the race, I will be supporting Mitt Romney for President.
Of the four remaining serious contenders (and as fond as I may be of Ron Paul's views on limited government and federalism, he is not a serious contender) two of them are automatically disqualified. John McCain was the main proponent of an unconstitutional and un-American law that regulates the content of political speech, which disqualifies him. Rudy Giuliani believes that abortion should be legal, so he's an even less attractive option than McCain. Neither Giuliani nor McCain will get my vote in the general election, much less the primary. If McCain or Giuliani wins the nomination, I will consider the Libertarian candidate.
Huckabee and Romney are the only two remaining who I can vote for in November. Huckabee's record on limited government is shaky. I am concerned that he would continue the big government "conservatism" of President Bush. I will vote for Huckabee in November should he win the nomination thanks to his strong pro-life views, with the hope that he will live up to his self-description as a fiscal conservative. But in the primaries, I am supporting Romney.
My support of Romney is not without reservations. It wasn't too long ago that Romney was a left-leaning governor of Massachusetts. Is his recent conversion to conservatism genuine? Or is he moving to the right to secure the conservative Republican Party base? As much as Romney has been mocked for switching sides on some issues, it is certainly possible for a politician's views to truly evolve over time. We saw this locally with former U.S. Representative Frank McCloskey, who changed his position and opposed Interstate 69.
Romney is saying all the right things. He supports tax cuts (which are critical to prevent or lessen the severity of a possible recession) and a strong immigration policy, and he opposes abortion and human cloning.
Romney's Mormon faith is not an obstacle to voting for him for President. We have had non-Christians as President before, and we will again. The question is whether Romney has the leadership skills and, more importantly, the right principles to move public policy in the right direction. I believe he does, and that is why I support him to be the Republican nominee for President. I encourage other Republicans to join me.