Dick Cheney may have gone home to endorse McCain, but his hometown paper endorsed Obama today. In an opinion piece this morning, the Casper Star-Tribune wrote that “Obama can lead us through troubled times.” This is a great endorsement, rebuffing McCain’s falsehoods about Obama’s stance on clean coal technology and echoing the same points I heard at the Convention (from Gov. Janet Napolitano and Sen. Ken Salazar, among others) regarding Obama’s understanding of the issues facing Western states. Here’s the entire endorsement:
It is a foregone conclusion that Wyoming’s three electoral votes will go to Sen. John McCain. It would be easy for the Star-Tribune to simply agree with the majority of voters in this red state and endorse the Republican candidate for president.
But this isn’t an ordinary election, and Sen. Barack Obama has the potential to be an extraordinary leader at a time we desperately need one. The next occupant of the White House will inherit a national economy that’s collapsing and two wars our nation has been fighting for years, depleting valuable resources we need to fix a multitude of domestic problems. Far too many of our nation’s citizens live paycheck to paycheck, worried about whether they’ll have a job next week or if a medical crisis will bankrupt them.
What America needs most in these troubled times is a president who will move the country in a positive direction. The candidate who is most likely to chart a new course that will lead us to better days is Obama. Moreover, he is the best candidate for Wyoming.
In our state and across the country, Obama has reinvigorated his party and won over independent and even GOP voters. A record 7,000 people participated in Wyoming’s Democratic county caucuses, which Obama convincingly won.
Obama earned the endorsement of Gov. Dave Freudenthal, who has an 80 percent approval rating in Wyoming and is probably the least partisan governor in the nation. Cynics may say Freudenthal wants a job in an Obama administration, but it’s simply not in the man’s character to set aside his Wyoming values for personal gain.
Wyoming’s energy-based economy is faring better than the nation’s, but there’s no guarantee that will last forever. Obama supports the development of clean-coal technology, which could assure a future for our vast coal resources. His focus on energy independence through a major investment in alternative energy research and development could lead to the creation of new industry and jobs in the state, and dovetails nicely with the work being done at the new School of Energy Resources at the University of Wyoming.
On Western issues, Obama seeks the advice of people like Freudenthal and Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico. McCain showed a surprising lack of understanding of Western issues when he initially called for renegotiation of the Colorado River Compact, before others in the region set him straight.
Two of the best ways to judge presidential candidates is by looking at how they conduct their campaigns and who they select as vice president. On both fronts, Obama wins impressively.
We may not always agree with Sen. Joe Biden’s decisions, but Obama tapped him to bring valuable foreign policy experience to the ticket. There is no question that the longtime senator is capable of serving as president if needed.
McCain’s selection of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, however, shows extremely poor judgment. She has shown repeatedly that she is simply not ready to fill McCain’s shoes.
Obama’s advisers are extremely capable leaders. It’s good to know that he turns to the likes of Warren Buffett for financial matters and retired Gen. Colin Powell on military issues. With his emphasis on diplomacy along with a commitment to protecting America, Obama gives us our best hope of regaining the respect of other nations.
If the John McCain of 2000 saw today’s counterpart, he wouldn’t recognize himself. McCain is no longer a GOP maverick, or the war hero whose principles were unwavering. He has flip-flopped on issues ranging from tax cuts to torture in an effort to win over the conservative base of his party. He has waged a dismal campaign based on fear and divisiveness.
We don’t agree with Obama on several issues. There is no evidence that raising taxes on any segment of the population has ever stimulated the economy. He should reject this part of his economic plan.
But his campaign has been an honorable one that has focused on inclusiveness and hope. The three presidential debates showed Obama to be a calm, thoughtful leader with a unique vision of the future. The contrast with his opponent, who seemed angry and erratic, could not have been more stark or more telling.
We endorse Barack Obama for president.
Quick editorial note: Obama has a landslide victory in newspaper endorsements, with 240 to McCain’s 114, as of Friday. The Editor & Publisher is keeping up with the tally and will do a final update today.