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When political headwinds bite, entrenched interests wield their power, and intractable problems require more than tough words, who is best equipped to stand strong? During primary season, promises abound. But when boldness goes out of fashion — and when those easily-spoken promises prove hard to fulfill — which candidate has the conviction, courage, and capability to follow through?
In this field of moderate governors, first-term senators, and inexperienced outsiders, I’m not finding an obvious answer. So consider this a chance to make a case for your candidate.
To me, the Walker campaign demonstrated that national media — even conservative media — is not always insightful when evaluating a candidate on local issues, so I am prepared to question the narrative on all the other candidates. What was Rubio really like as Florida House Speaker? Is Ted Cruz really as conservative and anti-establishment as he portrays himself, or is that a convenient political pose for a junior Texas Senator? Has Christie actually done the best he can on guns with his liberal legislature, or is he dangerously weak on the Second Amendment?
I don’t fully trust national coverage on any of these questions. So, if the record needs to be set straight, I’ll even listen to the praises of John Kasich. Is he really as squishy as all that? Better? Worse?
Right now, it’s easy for candidates to cut Washington down to size with their rhetoric, throw its establishment out in the cold, abolish its agencies, and verbally conquer problems from immigration to the debt. I don’t put much stock in that rhetoric, nor in details of policy proposals that won’t survive Congress intact. I’m more interested in evidence of genuine conviction on basic issues: religious liberty, the Supreme Court, Obamacare, the ever-expanding intrusion of the federal government.
I don’t want a candidate to tell me what I want to hear. I want to see him seek to persuade those who might not want to hear what he has to say. I want to see promises turned into action. I want evidence of real conviction.
I’m a still-undecided voter, and those are my criteria. Can you tell me why you believe your candidate fits them best?