The Florida Times-Union: McCain Makes His Case
By Senator John McCain, The Florida Times-Union
January 21, 2008
Three decades ago, a visionary politician described the dangers in the world. It was, like today, a time when some doubted America's goodness and greatness.
Many argued for reconciliation with our global adversary at the time. But this man held firm. He did what he thought was right.
He criticized the liberal Democrats' foreign policy of weakness and vacillation. He called for resolve and firmness in dealing with the Soviets.
Fortunately, this man, Gov. Ronald Reagan, became president.
Today, the challenges are at least as severe as they were when Reagan stood tall. And, today, the differences between Republicans and Democrats on national security are every bit as stark as they were 30 years ago.
I believe our nation's best days are ahead and remain committed to an America with a strong national defense; a smaller, more accountable government; a robust economy with abundant opportunity for all who seek it; and a nation of traditional values that protects the rights of the unborn and the traditional family.
Today, we confront a titanic struggle against Islamic extremism that will not be won quickly or easily. But we will win it, despite the efforts of leading Democratic presidential candidates who vote against funding for our troops engaged in war in Afghanistan and Iraq.
It is up to us and our determination for victory. I, too, look forward to bringing our troops home, but I know that we must bring them home in victory and with honor. We must recognize that our enemies are in this fight to win.
At home, Americans have lost trust in their government. The ambition of my presidency will be to restore that trust.
I will fight to ensure a political process worthy of the sacrifices that have been made by so many to keep us free and proud and will see to it that the institutions of self-government are respected pillars of democracy.
Special interests have too much influence in Washington. That will end. I will secure the border, bring spending under control, veto pork-barrel spending bills and keep taxes low by reforming a tax code that is too complex and too burdensome.
I will restore trust in government by securing our nation's borders. I will work to modernize Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid and bring accountability, choice and competition to our schools, so our children are equipped for the best jobs of the 21st century.
I will also nominate strict constructionist judges who understand that their job is to rule on what the law says and not to impose their opinions through judicial fiat.
We are in need of bold solutions to address health care in America, an issue that touches every family in this nation and impacts our economy and fiscal outlook.
But the answer is not to increase the amount of bureaucracy through a government-controlled health care or single-payer system.
The answer is to enhance the ability of the market to offer affordable and portable insurance options for as many Americans as possible, and to help those without insurance to access the health care system with the dignity and quality care that all Americans expect and deserve.
I am running for president to protect our country from harm and defeat its enemies. I am running for president to restore trust in our government and to ensure it remains worthy of that honor.
I am not running to leave our biggest problems to an unluckier generation of leaders, but to fix them now, and fix them well.
I am running for president to make sure America maintains its place as the political and economic leader of the world; the country that doesn't fear change, but makes change work for us; the country that does not look longingly to the past, but aspires to even better days.
I am running for president of the United States, a blessed country, a proud country, a hopeful country, the most powerful and prosperous country and the greatest force for good on Earth.