I had lunch with some friends this Sunday and as is the normal course we discussed politics. I expressed my frustrations with Bush and my friend, who is not a Bush supporter, encouraged me not to go from the extreme of being an avid supporter to being an avid anti-Bush person. Interesting.
I thought about why I supported him so strongly, especially during his first term. I think the answer to that is that he was under constant attack during his first term. Since the election was so close, the Democrats never let up. They kept the pressure on him during his entire term in an effort to upset the elections in 2004 and claim a much wanted victory. Once the election was over and Bush won, the Democrats got quiet. They aren't as vocal against him these days. The resist supporting his proposals, but they aren't doing these blanket criticisms as they did during he last term. So the duty to "protect" him from these crticisms isn't there. Now I can just kick back and enjoy having him as President.
Except I'm not really enjoying him as President.
I agree that we need a leader that has strength and resolve. I agree that we need someone who says it the way he sees it. I agree that Bush isn't perfect and no one is going to be perfect, either. I'm angry with his feeding and support of the Religious Right. When abortion was a part of the equation for stem cell research, I agreed that it needed to stop. Now abortion is no longer a part of that equation. We can obtain these cells without tapping into abortion clinics for them. Bush's personal religious convictions are standing in the way. This display of establishing policy based on one's personal religious convictions is sending the wrong signals. Our military now believes it is ok to impose religious views onto their soldiers and officers. Religion has never supported man's progress but has always stood in its way. Why is he giving them so much power?
And there is something else that is bothering me. I feel like his religious views and support is handing the 2008 election over to the Democrats. I feel like he is giving it to them and that Hillary is going to clean up in 2008. If Giuliani runs there is strong possibility he could take it.
I don't know, I guess I had higher expectations of him. Maybe these expectations are not realistic and that rather than be angry at the President, I have to revisit them. And accept that he is neither a major disappointment nor is he superman.
He is just a man who happens to be our President.