Conversation with an Undecided Florida Voter

On my flight from Washington DC to Atlanta today, I had a very interesting conversation with the guy, who was sitting next to me. My one-hour conversation with Garry, a computer engineer and registered Republican from Tallahassee/Florida, focused on politics. He was eager to talk politics, asking me about Obama’s positions in different policy areas after I told him that I study American Politics.

Garry’s dad was in the military. Thus, patriotism and respect for the troops are very important to him, as is the 2nd Amendment. Patriotism was the first issue he mentioned, putting emphasis on its importance and arguing that it is central to his judgement of the candidate, the candidate obviously being Obama. Responding, I said that political actions are a better reflection of patriotism and that fighting the “right” war shows much more respect towards the milititary, than simply saying that the troops are important.

Nevertheless, he put much emphasis on the fact that he will not necessarily vote Republican this year, because he thinks that the country is going into the wrong direction and that McCain is simply not big enough of a change from the Bush adminstration. What was interesting to me, was the fact that he wouldn’t have hesitated to vote for the Democrats if Hillary Clinton would be the mominee or if she would be VP candidate. So I responded by saying that Obama and Clinton are not really that far appart on the issues.

We talked about the economy, taxes, national security, foreign policy, education, etc. He says, he doesn’t know what to believe due to all the propaganda. One of his friends is a die-hard Republican, who sends around numerous e-mails, “Republican propaganda e-mails” as Garry  described them. In the end, we exchanged e-mail addresses, so that we can exchange propaganda videos.