These are the U.S. Presidents I Voted For:

From THE BOOK OF MYSELF, The Middle Years, The World (Hyperion Books, 2007, page 145, www.marshallbooks.com)

These are the presidents I voted for:

I am 51 years old but this is only my 9th presidential election.  My parents were flaming liberals in the 1960s and brought me up to be a good Democrat, who supported federal spending to help the poor versus the greedy Republicans who supported the wealthy classes.  But I broke ranks along the way, stumbled, and then recovered.

In 1974, when I turned 18, I registered with the Democratic party.  I felt my vote counted, and looked forward to my first presidential election two years later.

In 1976, when I was a 20-year-old college student, I voted for Jimmy Carter.  Ford had been a caretaker President after Nixon’s fall from grace, so I wouldn’t have voted for him anyway.

In 1980, selling Apple II computers and Commodore PETs in San Francisco, I voted for Carter again, but was kind of pleased about our California actor-turned governor moving in the White House.  Maybe it would be good for out state.  I felt bad for Jimmy though, especially with how the Iran Hostage Crisis turned out for him.

In 1984, I was starting to make real money as a gung-ho software manger.  I didn’t want Uncle Sam taking all my wages in taxes, so voted for Reagan.  I convinced myself that he was a compassionate conservative and wouldn’t forget the little guy.  I just couldn’t get excited about Mondale.  I even changed my political affiliation to the Republican party.  By this time my father was moving toward the Green party and lamented that I had gone over to the dark side.

In 1988, I came to my senses and voted for the Democrat, not because I thought Dukakis would win, but because I didn’t like Bush Sr.  He was the CIA chief and everybody knows what that meant.  The Willie Horton slander was just the tip of the iceberg for a CIA chief.  However, I stayed in the Republican party.

In 1992, I voted for Clinton and was truly excited about the new era that Bill and Hillary (and Al Gore) represented.  I was disappointed that they couldn’t push through the national health care plan during Bill’s first term, since I was living in German where the national health care system worked just fine.

In 1996, I voted for Clinton again.  It was no contest against Dole.  I am happy with my two Clinton votes but was extremely mad at Bill for not controlling his urges.  If not for Monica (and the others), Gore would not have broken with Bill, and Al would have sailed into the White House. 

In 2000, I finally recognized the obvious, that I was a Republican in name only.  I voted for Gore and re-registered a year later as a Democrat.  Bush Jr. was not even a remote consideration; I just didn’t think he was qualified, and couldn’t understand why others thought he was.

In 2004, I voted for Kerry and hoped we would squeak through.  I was livid about Karl Rove and his dirty tricks (Swift Boat among others), but I was also mad at the Democrats for not fielding a stronger candidate.  It was partly our fault that we let a failing president grab another four years to create his mayhem.  Shame on the national Democratic leaders.

Now in 2008, my daughter and son, both in college, will be voting in their first presidential election.  I must make my decision in the California Democratic primary on February 5th, just three weeks away.  I still don’t know if I will be voting for Hillary, Obama or Edwards, but I feel sure that any of them would make a better U.S. President than the field of Republican contenders.

From 2009 to 2012, until the pull the lever for the 10th time, I am hopeful that we will reclaim the promise for America, both domestically and in the world.

What are the presidents you voted for?

David Marshall, www.marshallbooks.com

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7 Responses to “These are the U.S. Presidents I Voted For:”

  1. Cody Says:

    I was, unfortunately, a year too young to vote in the last election (2004). I did my best to support Kerry, though.

    As for this year’s election, I’m fairly certain I won’t be voting for either of the major parties (Democrats or Republicans), unless either Dennis Kucinich or Mike Gravel manage to get the nomination. I’ll probably vote Libertarian or independent, depending on who the candidates are.

  2. marshallbooks Says:

    Thanks for sharing, Cody. My daughter turned 18 three days after the last presidential electtion, and she was mad as hell that she couldn’t add at least one extra vote for Kerry to overthrow King George. She did lots of canvassing for the Democratic Party in New England though, so maybe she brought in some votes after all. Hopefully you will vote for someone in 2008, even if it’s not for a Democrat or Republican. The more people who vote for the alternative parties, the bigger their influence in American politics will become. Every eligible voice should be heard.

  3. marshallbooks Says:

    If you want to answer this question but don’t have time for a long response, here’s an idea:

    Just write down the first year you voted for a U.S. President, a hypen and then the first letter of his/her last name, followed by the most dominant vowel in your first name, followed by a hypen–and then start again. For example, my selections above would be:

    1976-CA-CA-RA-DA-CA-CA-CA-KA

    Boy, this is the first time I have noticed so much “caca” in my votes! This year I might mix it up again with OA or EA (first candidates to offer vowels instead of consenents–a sign?), or perhaps I’ll stick with my tried-and-true CA.

    I’ll let you know how it goes.

    David

  4. bob liss Says:

    1972 – MI – CI – CI – MI – DI – CI – CI – GI – KI – (EI)

  5. Wayne Says:

    David,

    Great post! Here’s my short version:

    1976-CA-CA-MA-DA-CA-CA-CA-KA

    Mine is just CA CA MA instead of CA CA RA but still much CACA. I stayed pretty much democratic the whole stretch.

    I just wish there was less CACA in the whole system. Leaning toward OA this time around, though EA also looking good.

  6. Ann Says:

    I missed the 2000 elections by a few months; I turned 18 in 2001.
    2004- KA- (OA or CA, dunno yet)

  7. marshallbooks Says:

    I ended up voting for Obama. I think more than anything, it was Bill acting up in South Carolina. It made me think that Hillary might not be able to control her husband if she makes it into the Oval Office. And I also wished she had taken as stand against Bush earlier, even if it would have been a lonely stand back then. She had several years before he went to war to figure out if he was a liar or not. She should have read him better. On the postive side, Obama is energizing the under-30 vote like nobody I’ve seen in recent history, and I am willing to let him slide on the experience level since he’s a smart dude and will learn the ropes fast. I just wish he would stop smoking – that sets a bad for someone who claims he is concerned about health care in America.

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