What Are They Thinking Now?

Republicans who endorsed Barack Obama include:

Christopher Buckley - Conservative columnist (and son of National Review founder William F. Buckley) on why he supported and would vote for Obama:  

As for Senator Obama: He has exhibited throughout a "first-class temperament".  ....

I've read Obama's books, and they are first-rate. He is that rara avis, the politician who writes his own books. Imagine.  ...

...having a first-class temperament and a first-class intellect, President Obama will (I pray, secularly) surely understand that traditional left-politics aren't going to get us out of this pit we've dug for ourselves. If he raises taxes and throws up tariff walls and opens the coffers of the DNC to bribe-money from the special interest groups against whom he has (somewhat disingenuously) railed during the campaign trail....

He is, it seems clear enough, what the historical moment seems to be calling for.

Source:    "Sorry Dad, I'm Voting for Obama," Christopher Buckley, The Daily Beast, October 10, 2008.

Susan Eisenhower - former President Eisenhower's granddaughter.

... Obama is the only candidate who can build a national consensus on the issues most important to her-energy, global warming, an aging population and America's standing in the world.  "Barack Obama will really be in a singular position to attract moderate Republicans," she told NEWSWEEK.

Joe Scarborough - Former GOP congressman who anchors an MSNBC morning television show.

... many conservative friends-including Bush officials and evangelical Christians-sent him enthusiastic e-mails after seeing Obama's post-election speeches in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina. "He doesn't attack Republicans, he doesn't attack whites and he never seems to draw these dividing lines that Bill Clinton [does]," Scarborough told NEWSWEEK.

Source:  "Barack + GOP = ‘Obamacans,'" February 1, 2008.

Peggy Noonan - conservative columnist. 

The case for Barack Obama, in broad strokes:

He has within him the possibility to change the direction and tone of American foreign policy, which need changing; his rise will serve as a practical rebuke to the past five years, which need rebuking; his victory would provide a fresh start in a nation in which a fresh start would come as a national relief. He climbed steep stairs, born off the continent with no father to guide, a dreamy, abandoning mother, mixed race, no connections. He rose with guts and gifts. He is steady, calm, and, in terms of the execution of his political ascent...shows good judgment in terms of whom to hire and consult, what steps to take and moves to make.

Source: "Obama and the Runaway Train," Peggy Noonan, October 29, 2008.

Colin Powell - President George W. Bush's first Secretary of State, as he endorsed Obama:

"He has both style and substance. I think he is a transformational figure..."

"I come to the conclusion that because of his ability to inspire, because of the inclusive nature of his campaign, because he is reaching out all across America, because of who he is and his rhetorical abilities.... He has met the standard of being a successful president, being an exceptional president."

Powell continued, defending Obama against McCain's latest charge that the Democrat's policies are quasi-socialist:  "We can't judge our people and hold our elections on that kind of basis. Yes, that kind of negativity troubled me."

Source: "Colin Powell Endorses Obama," The Huffington Post, October 19, 2008, 

Ken Adelman - former Assistant to U.S. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld from 1975 to 1977, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations during the Ronald Reagan administration, and Reagan's director of arms control.  Mr. Adelman is the man who wrote:  "demolishing Hussein's military power and liberating Iraq would be a cakewalk."

Granted, McCain's views are closer to mine than Obama's. But I've learned over this Bush era to value competence along with ideology. Otherwise, our ideology gets discredited....

McCain's temperament...depressed me into thinking that "our guy" would be a(nother) lousy conservative president. Been there, done that.

I'd rather a competent moderate president. Even at a risk, since Obama lacks lots of executive experience displaying competence (though his presidential campaign has been spot-on). And since his Senate voting record is not moderate, but depressingly liberal. Looming in the background, Pelosi and Reid really scare me.

Nonetheless, I concluded that McCain would not -- could not -- be a good president.  Obama just might be.

That's become good enough for me -- however much of a triumph...of hope over experience.

Source:  "Why a Staunch Conservative Like Me Endorsed Obama," Ken Adelman, Huffington Post, October 24, 2008.