Two Candidates, One Presidency
It is now the year 2008, and the presidential campaigns are off to a racing start. Hilary Clinton recently lost the democratic nomination, and it is now up to democratic senator Barack Obama or republican senator John McCain to lead the United States of America successfully. Every four years candidates are given the chance to prove they are worthy of the presidency by showing the nation what they truly believe. Two main issues that have been lingering over the United States are the war in Iraq and the economy. Each nominee holds both similar and different points when it comes to each of these topics, making the decision for the presidency a tough one.
It may seem that as a result of Barack Obama being a Democrat and John McCain being a Republican, these two candidates would have nothing in common on the war in Iraq. Conversely, Obama and McCain support many of the same ideas on the subject of Iraq and agree of several on the same issues. They both want what any other sane human being would want, peace. Each of the candidates looks forward to getting American troops out of Iraq, while hoping to restore democracy. Both contenders have voted to support Bush’s funding for Iraq and the idea to send more troops to Afghanistan. Neither Obama nor McCain wants to give up on something that America has spent so much time and money into, but they are both ready for the conflict to come to an end. Their ideas may be similar, but the way Obama and McCain plan to carry them out is quite different.
While Barack Obama and John McCain have many similar feelings on the Iraq war, they still disagree on numerous things. John McCain announced that he would like to withdraw troops from Iraq by the year 2013. As a result of him not announcing this date until recently, Democrats were floored because McCain earlier said, “I’m not putting a date on it. This [not putting a date on troop removal and getting them out when the time is right] is what I want to achieve” (Richter 1). McCain believes that United States troops should remain in Iraq for a longer period than Obama because he feels that we should still be on defense against Al Qaeda. McCain also supports George Bush’s troop increase. He is surprised at what only a few bridges in Iraq have accomplished, and having more would only make the United States that much closer to getting out of Iraq. Obama, however, says that his plan is to remove all combat bridges within sixteen months of taking office (Richter 2). He did, nevertheless, agree to take more time or continue to leave troops in Iraq if it is necessary. Barack Obama also is opposed to a troop increase. He said, “Too many lives have been lost and too many billions have been spent for is to trust the President on another tried and failed policy opposed by generals and experts, Democrats and Republicans, Americans and even the Iraqis themselves. It is time for us to fundamentally change our policy” (“the Issues: Iraq” par. 8). Iraq is not the only issue that is facing the United States today. There are still countless concerns that exist right here in America’s own government.
Aside from Iraq, the United States’ economy is another major worry for the 2008 presidential campaigners. With this in mind, Barack Obama and John McCain both have many similar views on this topic. The economy is surprisingly America’s number one concern for the upcoming year, and both nominees are striving for votes. Both want to do what is best for the country, like lower gas prices, give jobs back to millions of Americans, and make lives better for the average middle class working family. Obama and McCain would both like to expand unemployment benefits making those who lost their jobs better off. Each of them plans to provide for the jobless and make room for many more opportunities of employment. McCain did not support Obama’s plan for homeowners at first, but he has now accepted the idea. Both Obama and McCain voted for the Foreclosure Prevention Fund calling for federal aid to help homeowners who cannot pay their mortgages. Not only will the government try to help citizens in these living situations, they will make an effort to assist them in selling their homes to find a cheaper one to live in (“Obama Hits McCain,” par. 16).
The economy issue, nonetheless, is not as peaceful between Obama and McCain as it may seem. The two contenders still disagree on many things they believe best suits the United States of America’s needs. When it comes to taxes, Barack Obama opposes George Bush’s tax cuts for households earning more than $250,000 (“The Issues:Economy/Taxes,” par. 5). He wishes to cut taxes by eighty billion a year for workers, homeowners, and retirees. Obama clarifies his plan saying, “Raising taxes on the richest Americans but cutting them for others…would also help arrest the nation’s trend toward greater income inequality.’What we’re trying to do is restore some balance” (“McCain, Obama Spar,” par. 2). On the other hand, John McCain wants to make Bush’s tax cuts permanent. He wants to eliminate alternative minimum tax and raise the personal exemption for each dependent $3,500 to $7,000 (“The Issues: Economy/Taxes,” par. 13). McCain adds on Obama’s plan, “Americans of every background would see their taxes rise—seniors, parents, small-business owners, and just about everyone who has even a modest investment in the market. He proposes to eliminate Social Security earnings cap, and thereby to increase the tax on employers” (Apuzzo, par. 3). As the debate between Barack Obama and John McCain intensifies, more and more differences between each of their plans for reform emerge.
We are today left with the question, who will make a better president, Democrat Barack Obama or Republican John McCain? There are many characteristics of each candidate that make them worthy of the presidency, but it is up to America to decide who will be the superior leader. Today, the nation as a whole is faced with countless issues that need to be resolved by someone who knows exactly what they are doing. As the United States sits in a rut, and possibly it’s worst condition in awhile, it is going to take a long time and a boat load of effort to turn it around. With this proposal, society must make a choice: mark the ballot for Barack Obama or John McCain.