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Surprising Political Endorsements By U.S. Troops

Discussion in 'Political Zone' started by Heisenberg, Apr 8, 2008.

  1. Heisenberg

    Heisenberg Pow! Pow!

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    http://abcnews.go.com/WN/Story?id=4244798&page=1

    Surprising Political Endorsements By U.S. Troops
    American Soldiers Speak Out About Their Presidential Endorsements
    By MARTHA RADDATZ

    April 7, 2008—

    ABC's Martha Raddatz asked American soldiers in Iraq what issues are most important to them when looking at the presidential candidates.

    Though the military is not supposed to engage in partisan political activity, these soldiers spoke out about their personal endorsements, and their opinions are likely to matter. In 2004, 73 percent of the U.S. military voted for a presidential candidate, and officials believe it may be even higher this time around.

    PFC Jeremy Slate said he supported Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., because of his stated intention to pull out of Iraq right away.

    "That would be nice," Slate said, "I'd like to be home, yea."

    SFC Patricia Keller also expressed support for Obama, citing his representation for change.

    Spc. Patrick Nicholls from Eggawam, Mass., pointed out that many soldiers on the frontlines frequently think about their families back home.

    "We think about how our families are doing back home. That's a major concern, like how the economy is doing, also as well as where we're going to be in the future. Because really, truly, what we consider we're doing, we're doing a valuable job, we want to make sure that the efforts we make are appreciated."

    He suggested he was too engaged in Iraq to keep up with politics back home. "I haven't really been following it too much since we've been over here, ma'am," he told Raddatz. "So, don't really know which issues are too important to me right now. ... I don't know who's running, ma'am."

    Lt. Leah Wicks said that, tied into concerns about her family's welfare, were concerns about the economy, "where we're going to be in the future."

    Only moments before speaking with ABC News, the troops had been listening to Vice President Dick Cheney give a rousing speech, but it didn't change their political preference.

    Spc. Imus Loto said he supported Obama. "It will be something different. But he's out there and he'll probably support us a lot more."

    By support, Loto meant pulling out troops. "Pull me out, too." he said.

    Though the military is generally a more conservative group, soldiers like Sgt. Justin Sarbaum are just as eager for a pull-out as the Democratic candidates. Sarbaum said he wondered which presidential candidate would be able to better the U.S. relationship with rogue nations, such as Iran, so that soldiers are not sent off to another war.

    "Iran is obviously a big issue," Sarbaum said, "Here in Iraq for my third time; starting another war right now  is it really necessary?"

    Sgt. Cory Messingham from Lewisville, Texas, said he wasn't following the race, but he was concerned about candidates' paying attention to the emotional toll that the war has taken on soldiers.

    "My biggest issue is support for the military, military funding and our deployments, not having long deployments anymore. Because [the] majority of us are doing ...15-month deployments. So, it's tough on the soldiers and tough on the soldiers' families. Those are really my biggest issues."

    1st Sgt. David Logan said, "I am leaning toward Hillary. I think that we should have a gradual drawdown."

    Though the soldiers have been living in Iraq, they listen closely to the candidates on issues far beyond the wars they are fighting.

    "Education back in the states is one of my main concerns," Spc. Matthew Durkin said.

    Economy and environment were on Staff Sgt. Derek Dion's mind. "Things like gas prices, and look at the environment and what we're going to leave our children."

    Spc. Joseph Lindsesdt, who is from Alaska, said he was watching for consistency of the candidates' views. "The steadiness of the candidate, whether they've changed their views, constantly, over time, or with political wind, as I like to put it."

    To that end, Lindsesdt's pick is Obama. "The fact that he's followed his views, regardless of what they have been [sic] and whether I've agreed with them or not, sometimes. But he's been steady the entire way."

    When asked if he was concerned about criticism that Obama had less political experience than some of the other candidates, the battle-weary soldier replied, "No, I think being a decent leader doesn't have to do anything with experience much."
  2. burmafrd

    burmafrd Well-Known Member

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    THis is a pretty garbage interview. She had her agenda and cherry picked the responses. I wonder how many told her to take a hike once they saw she was with the mainstream. The troops have NO illusion about the media.
  3. Cajuncowboy

    Cajuncowboy Preacher From The Black Lagoon

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    :lmao:

    Really?


    You're kidding, right?

    Talk about cherry picking.
  4. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    I don't take this as a surprise that some serving their country support Obama or Hillary. Would you be surprised that many support McCain and still believe in what they are doing?
  5. Rackat

    Rackat Active Member

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    Yea, it's cherry picking. But, it does show not all the troops support the Republicans. It's a crap interview from a crap news agency, but it's the kind of crap that the cracks on the far left want.
  6. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Brotherhood of the Beard Staff Member

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    Cherry picking or not, there are more soldiers who lean left at times because of them being tired of being shipped to Iraq. More than many in here would be willing to admit.

    Another thing is many of the people who leave the military and run for office...do so on the democratic ticket.

    The whole military being republican mantra is far from reality.
  7. big dog cowboy

    big dog cowboy THE BIG DOG Staff Member

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    What in the world would you expect those kids to say?

    What crap.
  8. Hostile

    Hostile Tacos are a good investment Zone Supporter

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    I don't know why it would be surprising that some troops would vote Democrat, or want to go home, or not want to be in the middle of the issues in Iraq.

    I also don't know why it shocks people that many troops are very supportive of their actions for the military and the country.

    If people are split on the issues back here, why should they be any different?

    I can easily imagine that there are soldiers who are Democrats and Republicans who are supportive of being there, and vice versa. I don't for a minute believe all troops who are Republican are supportive of being there. Why assume that?

    Do I think the odds are that it is slanted towards political beliefs? Of course, but I don't believe anything is ever 100% certain.
  9. Doomsday101

    Doomsday101 Well-Known Member

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    I would agree that Rep do not have the inside track when it comes to people who have served their country I think you will find as many former military who are Dems as you do Reps. However you find as many former military who run for office who are republicans
  10. Yeagermeister

    Yeagermeister Active Member

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    No kidding.....

    Reporter: Would you rather be here or at home?

    Soldier: Home.....D'UH!!!!!!!!!!
  11. BrAinPaiNt

    BrAinPaiNt Brotherhood of the Beard Staff Member

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    Exactly.

    However if someone asks questions or talks about it other than the tried and true we are here just doing our jobs or a republican feeling...it is either a smear piece, political agenda or at times the soldier themselves are basically called scum. I have seen that where a soldier comes back and fights against a political party and they are called lefty loon or his patriotism questioned and so on.

    Just as you said though, the military has a wide variety of people and not all fit into a tight little box.

    I knew of many far left libs when I served. Heck I got into a fight with one of them over desert storm. I also had a SGT that was a conscientious objector, at that time I could not wrap my mind around it but I understand it better today.

    The military just has many different type of people and to the dismay of some in here they are not all die hard republicans. I would also hazard to say that some people only support the troops if they don't say anything against their political beliefs.

    I support them all as long as they are not doing things against the law (UCMJ) and only a few of them do that but you will have rotten apples in barrels and it is not an indictment against the military as a whole by any means.
  12. Heisenberg

    Heisenberg Pow! Pow!

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    Why do the troops hate the troops? :(
  13. Hostile

    Hostile Tacos are a good investment Zone Supporter

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    Why do some Cowboys fans hate other Cowboys fans?

    Why did a Hindu kill Ghandhi?

    Why did a Muslim kill Sadat?

    Why did a Christian kill MLK?

    Why do fools fall in love?
  14. iceberg

    iceberg detoxed Zone Supporter

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    i think most people with bullets flying over their head for whatever reason would vote for anyone who'd take 'em out the quickest. not sure how this would be a surprise for everyone/anyone.
  15. iceberg

    iceberg detoxed Zone Supporter

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    i'm glad i wasn't drinking anything just then...
  16. Jarv

    Jarv Loud pipes saves lives. Zone Supporter

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    I'm also sure there are some in the military that will vote Democratic, just wondering why she said 73% voted Republican last time, but did not get a poll on how many will vote each way this time.

    Now if she came back and said only 60% will vote Republican this time she would have something, but like others said, she just interviewed those who fit her agenda.
  17. silverbear

    silverbear Semi-Official Loose Cannon

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    I actually agree with you on this, the author clearly cherrypicked soldiers who agreed with her agenda... anecdotal evidence is never really compelling anyway...

    Of course, we've seen similar articles posted in here by you champions of the right, espousing your positions...
  18. silverbear

    silverbear Semi-Official Loose Cannon

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    Exactly-- it was like 5 to 1 in the midterms, Democrats with military backgrounds versus Republicans with military backgrounds...

    And of course the troops who keep getting sent back over there would get tired of it, and annoyed at those who keep sending them back... that's only human nature...
  19. silverbear

    silverbear Semi-Official Loose Cannon

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    Not in the 06 midterms, Dooms... it was well documented that the "Fighting Democrats" (an appellation coined by Jim Webb) severely outnumbered the number of "Fighting Republicans"...

    Now, over the decades, I expect that there were as many Repubs with military credentials as there were Dems, but more recently, the Democrats have benefitted from having more vets running for office... the Fighting Democrats were a big reason for the Democratic successes in the 06 midterms...
  20. silverbear

    silverbear Semi-Official Loose Cannon

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    Then perhaps we should think about bringing them home... the Iraqis don't want them there, they don't particularly want to be there (at least, they'd much rather be home)...

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