GOP CNN YouTube Debate: What an event!

I don’t know what to say…….I missed the debate live, but I stayed up for the re-airing  12 am this morning, I started out sleepy, but 2 am this morning I was full of energy!

I’m actually listening to the debate again in it’s entirety on XM radio’s POTUS 2008 right now as I type.

Read the following very carefully:

FORGET WHAT I HAVE SAID IN THE PAST ABOUT THE GOP CANDIDATES!!!

The candidates really impressed me this morning.  If you have been reading this blog, know me from a message board, know me personally, or listened to my radio show, it’s quite obvious that I’m not a fan of the republican party.

Well I have to admit, these candidates this morning have began to change that.

Overall, the debate was great, the candidates did a good job, and believe it or not, I may actually push the (R) button in November 2008!

I went into this debate thinking I would really despise these candidates and the party more, I left the debate thinking I might actually vote for one of the candidates!

As a black man and a Muslim, this is not to be taken lightly.  I would be on the couch until the election if I shared these thoughts with my wife!:)

Nevertheless, I feel I should share my opinions about the candidates based on my first debate and actually listening to the candidates:

I still don’t like former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, however I have to admit that he looks and sounds more than ready for the job and based on his record, he would probably do a good job.

I believe Governor Mitt Romney did a horrible job and seemed very disingenuous and not ready for the White House, if he gets the nod, I surely would never vote for him.

Representative Tom Tancredo….well he seems more like a prop!  He had some great views, but doesn’t seem “Presidential” and I would never support a candidate that would nuke the holy city I reverence!

Representative Duncan Hunter seemed very genuine but a little too conservative for my taste.

Representative Ron Paul, Ron Paul, Ron Paul…….well he’s definitely exiting, but like his Democratic counterpart Dennis Kucinich, while many of their views resonate with me and they are very committed to their beliefs, they seem just a little too extreme for my tastes.  If either got the nod, I would probably vote for them on principle, however I would be very cautious because of their extreme elements.

Senator John McCain, I don’t agree with him on many issues, but I still believe that he knows what he is talking about and would be a great asset to this nation.  Last night, he reinforced that as he gave Mitt Romney black eye after black eye.

Former Senator Fred Thompson, truly came off as a leader and would get my vote.

However…..(drumroll) I hope former Governor Mike Huckabee wins it! You heard it right, I would throw my support behind a Baptist Minister! 🙂  Huckabee, was genuine, heartfelt, and very impressive.  Every answer to every question whether I agreed with his position or not, was answered with compassion and it was obvious that he was truly thinking and trying his best to represent the heart and spirit of the American people.

There were some hits, misses, and other “stuff” with the questions.

From the very beginning I thought Romney dropped the ball on his attack on Guiliani and the whole “sanctuary city” argument.  He appeared very hypocritical and I believe Guiliani made perfect sense……at least to me.

Sen McCain, truly shined on torture and the US Military and I almost got off the couch and stood at the position of attention and give him a salute!

Mike Huckabee was hilarious when asked would Jesus (pbuh) run for office and it showed that he can be both serious and personable.

Rep Hunter was on point on immigration and the border fence.

However, I believe that all the candidates dropped the ball on both questions asked as it applies to black people in America:  The first was about black on black crime and the second was on why blacks don’t vote republican.  I believe the candidates missed a real opportunity here.  I believe Huckabee who mentioned that in his state he got 48% of the black vote, that if chosen as the GOP representative, he could get a lot of black votes, probably mine as well.

I also believe that most of the candidates dropped the ball on the lone “Muslim” question.  A sister in Hijab asked “what would they do to improve the US image to Muslims” and instead of reaching out the Muslim community, most of the candidates took the opportunity to address their base and talk very militaristic and borderline stroked the already high Islamaphobic atmosphere that is in this party.  Guiliani did the best on this question in my opinion.  I didn’t expect much out of Romney on this question especially after his comments the other day….

In the end, if Senator Hillary Clinton gets the democratic nod, I believe the only person on that stage last night that could easily defeat her, is Mike Huckabee.  Every other candidate will most likely lose.  If Senator Barack Obama gets the nod I believe Huckabee is the only that can go toe to toe with him as well.  Paul only wins against Kucinich.   Everyone else would have to pray Hillary or Barack fall on their own swords!

I will definitely be taking this discussion up on my show tonight at 10pm ET “The American Muslim” and I would love for my readers to call in.

Lastly, I would like to encourage minorities and those who have never looked at these GOP candidates to give them a try.  I believe in this cycle this party actually has more to offer than the Democrats (yeah even I can’t believe I typed that).  Don’t get me wrong, I believe there are several Presidents in the Democratic candidates, but I believe there are more in the GOP.

If we are truly serious about the future and direction of this country in 341 days we need to break partisan lines one way or the other and choose the best candidate for the country period, I for one at this point can say my vote is fair game I’m not committed to either a (R) or a (D).

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