Points By Drew Pritt

Why Sam Nunn is a poor choice….
July 8, 2008, 7:35 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized


Theres a reason why I have railed against any blog posting about Sam Nunn as a potential Veep pick. The reason why is he would be a poor choice in my opinion. Electorally, I have discussed the question of him being able to deliver Georgia, in a back and forth with Blake Rutherford, but let me discuss some more cons to former Senator Sam Nunn. As an aside, Blake has been writing why he thinks Nunn may make the ticket, not showing a bias or suggesting otherwise. I clearly am biased towards General Clark for personal reasons as well as reasons I have stated on here. However, let me return to the message at hand.

In terms of ideology, Nunn is not where Obama would be economically or socially. He strongly opposed the budget bill of 1993, which included provisions to raise taxes in order to reduce the budget deficit. Nunn also opposed President Bill Clinton’s proposal to allow members of the GLBT Community (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender) to serve openly in the military. You know my personal feelings on these issues because I have always believed we needed to reduce the deficit and I am out and proud. He voted in favor of school prayer, capping punitive damage awards, and limiting death penalty appeals. Nunn is inconsistent on a woman’s right to choose or affirmative action. This is in stark contrast to bases of support Obama needs to win a fall election. I am not so sure with Bush attempting to pack the courts with anti-choice judges and with GLBT issues at the forefront today of civil rights and with Obama being one who benefited greatly and comes from communities that have benefited from affirmative action programs that he would risk offending those communities by selecting someone a heartbeat away from the Presidency, whose record is in stark contrast to his own vision for change. More importantly, Nunn often quotes on armed services issues, like Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the late-Charles Moskos, a military sociologist who had frequently advocated a return to military service for young people. Could Obama seriously consider running with someone who thinks the draft is not a bad idea???

Sam Nunn served the people of Georgia as a U.S. Senator from 1972-1996. As the New York Times said when Nunn retired, “(Nunn) led the Senate Armed Services Committee for eight years. Throughout that period, he was the leading Democratic voice for a strong military, sometimes backing missile systems that other Democrats questioned. He also took a prominent role in supporting NATO and brought massive military appropriations home to Georgia. Senator Nunn fully understood his influence in Washington, as in 1989, when he derailed President George Bush’s nomination of John Tower as Secretary of Defense, and he often displayed an independent streak. Although a hawk on military preparedness, he voted against the deployment of troops in the Persian Gulf in 1990. And while he supported Mr. Clinton in 1992, he clashed with him over the President’s plan to allow homosexuals in the military….”

I am just not impressed with Sam Nunn. I cannot get excited over an Obama-Nunn ticket. Georgia will go Democrat if Governor Tim Kaine of Virginia goes there and speaks of his days as a missionary and talks about how he has cut taxes and balanced the budget as Governor of Virginia. Georgia will go Democrat if retired General Wesley Clark goes there and speaks to the military families at Ft. Benning and other military posts on a level only he could speak to them. I think even if Hillary is on the ticket and charms Zell Miller like only she can and gets Bill Clinton involved, then Miller working with Barnes and the African-American leadership can turn out the vote. But the only one promoting Sam Nunn prominently is former President Jimmy Carter. Carter has not always been the best judge politically though he is a good man who is a great humanitarian. If Obama’s staff is reading this discourse, look past the past which is Sam Nunn. Look to the future with Clark or Tim Kaine or even, fanciful as it sounds, Governor Phil Bredesen of Tennessee!

*NOTE* I would promote Governor Mike Beebe of Arkansas over everyone except Beebe as Vice President means Bill Halter would become Governor, which would be a fate worse for Arkansas since Mike Huckabee ascended to the Governorship.


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