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Indecision 2008 – Muslim Edition : Musings on DNC 2007


mban36l.jpgIndecision 2008 – Muslim Edition (by Hassan Mushtaq)

The Democrats had their first primary debate last Thursday (4/26/07), making it the earliest Presidential contest debate ever. Now I am not going to debate voting’s permissibility. That needs to be referred to the Islamic scholars. Here, I am just sharing my personal take on the political process, which will select the next President of this country.

As a prelude, I would like to mention Dr. Andrew Tanenbaum, who has been running an informative website since 2004, which carries information on candidates or potential candidates. For those of you in the IT field, you may know Dr. Andrew Tanenbaum as the author of textbooks on Computer Networks and Operating System.

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Now back to the Democrats’ primary debate (transcript can be found here): If I had to describe the debate in two words, it would be “Bush Bashing”. And personally speaking, I consider all these ‘gem moments’! Just six years ago, Americans dared not raise a voice against the President who had 93% approval rating. And those who did had their voices considered treasonous and un-patriotic. Subhan-Allah! Allah has brought so much humiliation to Bush within such a short amount of time that even his own party is distancing itself from him and even for them, it is becoming all the rage to bash their leader.

Besides the Bush-Bash, here are other observations on the candidates:

  • Hillary Clinton, wife of former president Bill Clinton, current senator from state of New York looked surprisingly presidential. Though I do not agree with many of her policies, I have to admit that she spoke with confidence, conviction and displayed political agility. This is in contrast to her speech during the 2004 DNC (Democratic National Convention), at which point she was lacking in all these areas. If elected President, Clinton insisted that she would get America out of Iraq. But, no timetable. On the issue of healthcare, she may be prone to weakness, based on her past failings in her healthcare revamp projects during her husband’s administration. On the other hand, she may have learned from her mistakes, and may end up creating an acceptable, practical universal healthcare system in America. On gun rights, she was reasonable to suggest that we do not want to infringe upon the rights granted under the Second Amendment, but at the same, she wants to do a better job of keeping guns out of hands of criminals and insane people. We all know where Democrats stand on abortion so that’s a mute point. And like many others, she is pro-Israel, and pro-AIPAC.
  • Senator Barack Obama, first potential black president, disappointed me. He was ok in his speech though he stumbled a few times. What bothered me most was his comment about Palestine. He was asked if he stands by his recent comment that, “No one is suffering more than Palestinian people.” He replied what he really meant (of course) that, “No body has suffered more than the Palestinian people from the failure of the Palestinian leadership to recognize Israel, to renounce violence and to get serious about negotiating peace and security for the region. Israel has been one of our most important allies around the world. It’s the only established democracy in the Middle East.” Dude, get a life, Israel a democracy? Please read work of Norman G. Finkelstein, specially “Beyond Chutzpah: On The Misuse of Anti-Semitism And The Abuse Of History”. On other issues he sounded like Hillary.
  • Former South Carolina Senator John Edwards, son of mill worker (perhaps he should put that on his name tag as well since he can’t say it enough times) stated that he was proud of what his father accomplished for him, so that one day John can afford to have $400 haircut. On the positive side, he has apologized publicly for his vote to authorize Iraq war. And you know what; he does have lot of Southern charm, so he may do well in South if he ends up becoming the Nominee.
  • Senator Christopher Dodd, who? Lets move on
  • Senator Joseph Biden, was relatively quite, given that he has gotten into trouble for putting his foot in his mouth not long ago.
  • Governor Bill Richardson of New Mexico is the type of candidate that were the White House a private Corporation, which wanted to hire the most qualified and experienced candidate, then he would be it. He is serving his second term as Governor of New Mexico; in the past, he has served in Congress and was former President Clinton’s Energy Secretary. He was also ambassador to UN, and has negotiated with many foreign leaders. His debate skills were decent; it seems though that these debates revolve more around front runners or controversial figures. As you may have figured out, my personal preference for the Democratic Nominee would be Bill Richardson.
  • Finally I am going to lump two candidates together, Ohio representative Dennis Kucinich, and former Alaska Senator Mike Gravel. Both are outspoken, very principled in their stances, were always against the Iraq war, and very progressive. Kucinich, is the most pro-Palestinian candidate you will find among the Democrats. Both of them, in my estimation, did great in the debates. However, unfortunate it may be, the perception is that they are not electable, and it causes people to ignore them even if they like them. As an asides, Kucinich is trying to get Dick Cheney impeached in Congress (Godspeed to you!).

If you watched the debate or have some other comments on the 2008 Presidential elections, then feel free to share your thoughts and comments. It has been few days, so I might have forgotten some important points. Also credit where credit’s due… the apt terminology “Indecision 2008” is taken straight from who else other than Jon Stewart from the Daily Show.

The preceeding analysis was written by our guest-writer, Hassan Mushtaq, who is an underground political junkie.

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The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.



  1. Hassan

    April 30, 2007 at 3:45 PM

    Here is what Biden said about Obama that got him into trouble


  2. Amad

    April 30, 2007 at 4:39 PM

    I think Obama is trying to over make-up for the Muslim-slant to his upbringing. He is trying to effectively firebomb the allegorical madrassa that people have him in.

    This is what I had to say about him a few months ago:

    Demise of Obama

  3. Mujahideen Ryder

    April 30, 2007 at 10:12 PM

    There is no way you can be the President of the US and not support Israel. It’s impossible, unless Israel DNE.

    I’ll probably most likely vote for Barack Obama.

  4. Hassan

    April 30, 2007 at 11:40 PM

    MR, can you give us some reasons you are voting for Obama, so we can ask other muslims to do same.

  5. Abul Layth

    May 1, 2007 at 1:38 PM

    I agree with the author’s bias towards Bill Richardson. Historically Senators have not done well getting elected. It is governors who the masses relate more too and trust to fill the power vacuum. They generally have more experience in “running” things. Obviously Bush was one of the first to have contradicted that belief. Furthermore, Bill Richardson is incredibly diplomatic. He believes in dialogue instead of violence. He actually does believe in “world peace” and he believes in trying to solve, diplomatically, the struggles ensuing the Muslim world.

  6. abu ameerah

    May 1, 2007 at 4:22 PM

    I get scared when Muslims are in a “Rock the Vote” kind of mindset…

  7. Pingback: » Indecision 2008 – Muslim Edition : Musings on the Republican Debate 2007

  8. ibnabeeomar

    May 5, 2007 at 12:48 PM

    “Vote or die.”
    -P. Diddy

  9. Hassan

    June 4, 2007 at 12:42 PM

    Well the democrats had their second debate yesterday. Only one who I believe is man of his words, is Dennis Kucinich. Well Mike Gravel perhaps also falls in this category, but he seemed so aloof. He never had any concrete point.

    Bill Richardson disappointed me big time, why he has to start every sentence mentioning he is governor of New Mexico? And why he has to take 1-2 minutes to come to actual point. He has shown poor debating skills this time, and I did not get where he stands.

    Joe Biden showed lots of anger and emotions. I do not think people would like yelling president.

    Christopher Dodd was quite decent and seemed more aware on every issue, than I expected.

    Then the big three, who all did well. Hard to say who would take more out of this debate. What I find disturbing is both republicans and democrats are more or less now socially and economically liberal, while republicans may be more hawkish in foreign policy (except for Ron Paul).

    From a strategic point of view, I think John Edwards would find his way to the ticket one way or another. He would either win presidential nomination, or he would be running mate of winner (either Hilary or Obama). John Edwards has to be there to balance the ticket, and win in south. But I believe the talk about taking south is no longer valid, its the west that is swinging and is important. Western states are not hardcore republicans or democrats. (not counting coastal states of Washington, Oregon and California that are pure democtratic). I think democrat can easily take north east and midwest (except Indiana) and also can take western coast as usual. They have to work in New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Montana etc, and they may take those and take election.

  10. Amad

    June 4, 2007 at 4:20 PM

    I don’t know about Edwards getting a ticket again… I would fancy that a Clinton/Obama ticket may be more likely. The whole thing about the VP’s effect is sometimes exaggerated… really the VP can only harm, not help too much.

  11. Hassan

    June 4, 2007 at 4:49 PM

    Right having a woman presidential nominee and a black man for VP can hurt. So I doubt Hilary would want to take Obama, or Obama to take hilary as VP. One minority is enoug (strategically). Ofcourse we do not mind any, its the issues that matter to us.

  12. Anonymous

    June 4, 2007 at 10:00 PM

    I would think that voting for any pro-abortion candidate would be haram for you.

  13. Sasha Lazarios

    March 13, 2008 at 11:21 AM

    I’m a registered democrat in Philadelphia, PA. I’m also a triracial mix of Black, White and Native American and directly mixed. I am a new Muslim and proud of it. I’ll vote for whoever wins the primaries, but frankly as a Muslim I can’t vote for either over the other out of good concience. I hate that Hillary likes smear campaigns and closet lesbians like Geraldine Ferraro who hate black men (but really are jealous of them and want to be one); and I hate that O’BAMA acts like a punk and that Islam is something one must apologize for. I wish a real black man who’s unapologetic, manly in how he carries himself, from Philadelphia, from Islam and proud of it, and born into poverty had any chance at becoming president-that I’d vote and campaign for in an instant. And yes, I don’t like abortion, gay marriage, or any of that either. But that’s a whole different can of worms and I need to shut up now and get to work.

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