"This American Moment" Continues...

Listen to this 'Talk of the Nation' topic

After a brief Gustav-related hiatus, "This American Moment," our series of interviews with different thinkers, from different disciplines, of different backgrounds, running throughout the Democratic and Republican conventions, continues today. We'll talk with Ross Douthat and Reihan Salam, of The Atlantic, authors of a new book, called Grand New Party: How Republicans Can Win the Working Class and Save the American Dream. They're also young.

If you're a young voter, Republican or Democratic, what does this election and campaign mean to you?

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Ross and Reihan are WRONG that Gov. Palin is "pro gay rights." She vetoed an effort to take away domestic partnership benefits from state employees only because the Attorney General told her it violated the state constitution. But then she said she would support an effort to change the state constitution so the benefits could be taken away. Palin is a down-the-line right wign zealot. Neither she nor McCain are any friend of gay Americans.

Sent by M Grover | 2:54 PM | 9-2-2008

I'm sure the religious right would be having an entirely different conversation should Barack Obama's daughters be old enough to be pregnant and were expecting and unmarried.

Sent by cheryl | 3:04 PM | 9-2-2008

Speaking of young Republicans, why are there College Republicans? Shouldn't all GOPers of that age be in the armed forces, defending our way of life in the Battle For (Western) Civilization?

Sent by Brian in Tallahassee | 3:18 PM | 9-2-2008

I would like to state that I am truly excited about this particular election and in that same breathe I am also extremely concerned. The recent news of Sen. Palin's daughter does concern me greatly both as a mother and a professor at a higher educational facility. It has nothing to do with the child or the reaction of her (child's) family; frankly, I am relieved to see that she has so much support. The fact is that Sen. Palin's belief and lack of action for education is reflected by this situation with her daughter. How and what does that have to do with the American people you ask, great question!!!!! If voted in Sen. Palin will be involved in passing legislation reflective of her beliefs (i.e. abstinence education vs. sex education) that will directly reflect on to our children and their educations. So if she passes abstinence education policies, scientific research has shown that our kids will have a higher chance of also ending in this same situation. Do I believe kids should be engaging in this action; no, but I am a realist and a thinker and this is an inevitable situation. Just something to think about......

Sent by Heather in San Antonio TX | 3:53 PM | 9-2-2008

In the grand scheme of things I do not see myself as a young voter, however at 27 years old I guess I will just have to accept the fact that I have yet to become a voting veteran. I am an Independent. I pride myself on the fact that I answer and side with no one except for my own values, ethics, and conscience. This election is very important to me because I am increasingly at odds with our society and country as a whole today. I want the old status quo to be tossed aside and for us to become a great nation that values all people and does not appear to be the "village idiot" on a global stage. I want equal rights for all people, period. These last few elections have been very unforgiving to me. I have almost lost all will to express myself by right of voting. I voted for Senator John McCain in the primary because at the time I thought that he would make a good leader. Since then I have changed my mind. I also would like to point out that I am a woman, and in no way would I ever vote for Gov. Sarah Palain. I believe she is the worst running mate that McCain could have chosen at this time. I am in no way a liberal or conservative but I do feel that Gov. Palain needs to help herself and her family before she tries to lead a nation. I also feel like Senator John McCain thinks that women are idiots and just put her on the ticket to persuade Clinton voters with another female candidate. Hilary Clinton would have made a good President, she was the best woman for the job but I feel that we need a break up of the political legacies in this country. So, as a young independent female voter I will now be casting my vote for Senator Barack Obama and Senator Joe Biden. I feel that they would or could be the best candidates' to try and reunite the hurting family of this great nation. Plus, Obama is not a spouse of a former US President, providing us with some new blood in the veins of our nation. I need to see some encouraging adjustments to how this nation does things. If things do not go well, I may lose all hope at becoming a voting veteran.

Sent by Elise Burnette | 4:34 PM | 9-2-2008

I am 21, and this will be my first presidential election. I am a registered Libertarian, but temporarily changed my affiliation to Republican to vote for Ron Paul in the primary.

Ron Paulites are greatly outnumbered by Obamanics at the college level, but seem to have a comparable level enthusiasm. A significant porportion of Paul's support base seems to be 9/11 conspiracy theorists. I am unaware of any official support Representative Paul has given to this line of thought, but it seems to be pervasive, and off-putting. I believe it was Michelle Malkin who labeled Paul as a conspiracy theorist or some such, but I suppose thats not an unreasonable assumption based on his fan base.

Although derided as 'pot-smoking Republicans', I can't imagine many Libertarians throwing their support behind the current Republican party. I certainly have no intention of supporting John McCain. The only economic policy I hear coming from the Obama camp is mindless and self-defeating populism. From the sidelines, it seems that our choices are either a continuation of Bush's horrendous foreign policy, or brain-dead economic policy. McCain seems to have at least part of it right when it comes to trade. He is opposed to federal mandates for corn-based ethanol and I believe is also against the insane amount of farm subsidies that are currently handed out. I would feel about Obama if he would take a similarly principled approach, but he seems to be a friend of the corn grower for the time being.

I can't imagine becoming a bonafide member of either of the main parties as they seem to think that graft is the main purpose of attaining office. I'm turned off to the parties, but tuned into politics, something I hope more of my peers would do.

Sent by Lucas | 4:38 PM | 9-2-2008

I agree with Cheryl. There is a double standard going on here. If Barrack Obama's resume read like John McClian's he wouldn't even be in the picture, and for sure if he had a pregnant 17 year old daughter while he was running the first thing would be said is he can't run his on family, much less a country. Let stop sugar coating the issues, and it is not playing the race card, but the real truth is the Presidency of the United States has been a good old boy network as long as there has been an America, and the Republicans don't want to let that go. Had Obama been a 47 year old dynamic white man that generated the enthusiasm and energy Obama has he would be looked at as the second coming of Camelot. Lets be real it is not Obama like of experience its his genetics.

Sent by Booker | 8:09 AM | 9-3-2008

Putting everything aside now, it is what it is. We need to be responsible citizens and decide which candidate has the best solution for our country for both economic and foreign issues.

Sent by soda | 5:20 PM | 9-5-2008