The American Conservative’s Symposium on “The Conservative Vote”

I don’t mean to steal Sean’s thunder below, but I made this post for IPR and wanted to cross post it here. There are some additional links you should be aware of.

TAC has a “symposium” of multiple writers discussing whom they plan to vote for. Some endorse voting for one of the major party candidates and some endorse not voting, but several endorse third party votes or write-ins. Some of the writers include Andrew Bacevich, Justin Raimondo, Paul Gottfried and friend of this website Sean Scallon.

Daniel Larison has a separate endorsement here that wasn’t included in the symposium for some reason.

Samuel Goldman has a separate endorsement here because Hurricane Sandy precluded his participation in the symposium.

Here is a summary of the endorsements.

Johnson — 6 (Bandow, Brimelow, Galupo, Giraldi, Goldman, Kauffman, Larison if he could, Bovard if he doesn’t write in Ron Paul)

Romney — 4 (Coombs, Pinkerton, Tippins, Zmirak, Antle and Birzer leaning)

Obama — 4 (Bacevich, Hadar, McConnell, Millman, Giraldi in a pinch)

Goode — 1 (Scallon, Brimelow and Gottfried would if they could)

Rand Paul — 1 (McCarthy)

Hapsburg Monarch — 1 (Lind)

Not voting/ambivalent/unclear — 7 (Dreher, Dougherty, Gordon, Murphy, Raimondo [rooting for Obama], Richman, Russello, Beer, Sailer)

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11 thoughts on “The American Conservative’s Symposium on “The Conservative Vote”

  1. RedPhillips Post author

    First of all, it’s interesting to note how many are willing to vote third party or cast write-in protests votes or not vote. That said, this strikes me as who the TAC crowd might vote for, but is not, I hope, indicative of “the (dissident) conservative vote.”

    With all due respect to our own Harrison, if you vote for Obama, IMO, you are forever forsaking your credibility when trying to influence conservatives in the future. For example, I speculated about Bacevich as a possible non-interventionist candidate in the future. But here he says he will vote for Obama again in 2012 as he did in 2008. Well there you go. A Bacevich candidacy is dead in the water. All someone will have to do is say he voted for Obama twice and many people won’t ever hear anything else he says.

    As I have said before, I intend to write-in Goode. I can obviously see a conservative case for Goode. I can see a conservative case for holding your nose and voting Romney even though I don’t agree with it. I can see various protest write-in votes (Ron Paul for example). I could see Johnson as a protest vote if Goode isn’t available to you, although there are significant problems with Johnson which I intend to write about separately. But I can’t see voting for Obama. Doing so, IMO, is cutting off your nose to spite your face, and if the vote is known publicly is going to disqualify you with the crowd you hope to influence.

    The only way I could see voting for Obama is if you were fairly certain Obama would keep us out of war with Iran, and you are fairly certain Romney would plunge us into war with Iran, but I don’t know how you could be “fairly certain” either way. Maybe I’m naive, but I don’t think Romney will go to war with Iran because I don’t think Romney is a complete blithering idiot which is what you would have to be to do something that foolish. Romney is a pandering fool, but he isn’t a complete idiot.

  2. Matt Weber

    I agree with you. For conservatives, it’s basically down to Goode, Johnson, or Romney. Obama is just not a possibility. Even Harrison says he won’t vote for him, just silently hope he wins. Raimondo is taking that position as well. I’m still not sure about Goode vs. Romney. On the one hand, the Constitution party is obviously the more conservative party. On the other, Washington will go Obama anyway so it might be fun to try to turn it as purple as possible.

  3. Kyle Kopelovich

    That’s because the American Conservative is trying to out liberal this site. It’s funny that two of the most leftist sites on the internet both pretend to be Conservative.

  4. Kirt Higdon

    I haven’t heard that Bacevich has considered running for anything. His lesser evil votes for Obama don’t negate his insightful analyses of US foreign and war policy.

  5. Bruce

    “Even Harrison says he won’t vote for him, just silently hope he wins.”

    Unless my memories faulty (and it could very well be) that’s not what he said at first. He must have changed his mind.

  6. Rollo the Cat

    The problem with so many conservatives is they don’t know how to fight. When you are facing certain destruction, and are down to your last breath or so, every little delay is a victory. That is why I am voting for Romney. A delay of a few years is better than nothing and leaves open the possibility of a miracle turn around.

    I understand some people voting for third party candidates, but an conservative voting for Obama, or even rooting for him?

  7. Rollo the Cat

    And I might add that with Romney we have a 50% chance of getting a decent Supreme Court Justice. That is 0% with Obama.

  8. C Bowen (Hawthorne)

    That logic fails, Rollo.

    Romney’s policies (more spending) are just as likely to leave him holding the bag when the system as it is fails. More likely, a Romney election will give the Fed an opportunity for a Volker like response (if Romney goes through with replacing the Bernanke). Romney will happily sacrifice the midterms to be the leader of the GOP.

    The real question is what is going to happen at your state level in a 2014 wipe out. If your state can withstand it, go ahead vote Romney. If not, really think that one over.

  9. Kirt Higdon

    It’s impossible to prove or disprove historical counter-factuals, but I’m pretty convinced that 8 years of Al Gore (2001 thru 2008) would have been preferable to the 8 years of Bush we got instead. 9/11, Katrina, and the banking crisis still would have happened, but there likely would have been no Iraq War, perhaps less involvement in Afghanistan, no Medicare Part D, no “No Child Left Behind” and perhaps less of a national security state. Best of all, we’d have avoided Obama and Obamacare. So I think it’s far from obvious that 4 years of Romney would be a lesser evil than 4 more years of Obama.

  10. Monte Poitevint

    The concern I got out of those chosen to respond at American Conservative is that a vote for Romney is NOT a vote for conservatism; it is a vote for the neocons. I share this deep concern. But to vote for Obama as a result of this concern? I share your viewpoint on this Red. In this election, we vote the Left no matter which of the two candidates we choose. I would be inclined not to vote at all as to suffer the future guilt and regret of another Bush.

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