A few thoughts with respect to the Republican debate that was held last week. First, it does not appear that too many minds will be changed based on what they saw during the debate. Second, what I wrote with respect to second and third tier candidates in the Democratic debate applies to the Republicans as well. The sooner they get rid of these second and third candidates from the debates, the better off the process will be. Thirdly, as pointed out by the RealClearPolitics blog, the most important line uttered by any candidate was by Guiliani who said (in response to a question about Clinton returning to the White House) "It would mean that we were back on defense against terrorism, given Senator Clinton's recent positions. And the reality is, in the 1990s, we were on defense in dealing with Islamic fundamentalist terrorism.
When you had this debate last week and all the Democrats were up here, I never remember the words "Islamic fundamentalist terrorism" being spoken by any of them." That is evidence, once again that Guiliani gets what we are up against.
As if we needed more evidence that Clinton is not a candidate that gets it, she is apparently ready to embrace an effort to de-authorize the war in Iraq. This is a ridiculous position for a supposedly serious candidate to take. It is one thing for a candidate like Edwards to urge the Democrats to not vote for a clean spending bill. After all, his candidacy is a long-shot and he needs to appeal to the lunatic left. But for a candidate that hopes to appeal to moderates like Clinton, taking a position like de-authorizing the war during the surge seems to defy common sense.
A few words on the school board elections to be held in the Five Towns on May 15th. In the election, the Orthodox will attempt to maintain their majority. While I don't take great interest in local elections, this particular election has piqued my curiousity for a few reasons. Firstly, one of the candidates, Pam Greenbaum has sued a well known blogger (Orthomom) for a number of disparaging comments about her which appeared on the Orthomom blog. The purpose of the suit is to unmask "Orthomom". As you don't have to be a lawyer to realize the suit has no merit and is insulting in its stupidity, it is hopeful that it will be thrown out soon. It is amazing that an elected official would try to use the courts to deny a citizen's First Amendment rights of free speech. Secondly, the recent ads that have been placed by the public school faction are blatantly anti-orthodox and are largely unfair. (How the editors of the Nassau Herald allowed them to be printed is a question which the Orthodox community should look into.) It is one thing to run a campaign based on facts and public policy positions, quite another to base your campaign solely on the hatred of a religious group. Thirdly (and no doubt stemming from the hate that I discussed in my second point), the campaign posters for the private school candidates were stolen during the night from in front of people's homes in my neighborhood. This is evidence of a campaign that based on all of the wrong ideas and motives. The election of May 15th is important and for those living in the Five Town area, please do not forget to vote.