Issues don’t matter

By Anita Doberman: CNJ columnist

I woke up in a cold sweat because I realized I failed to share with you my foolproof and infallible method for choosing the right candidate to be president.

After hours of arduous work to uncover the secrets and hidden agendas of the candidates, thorough research and professional investigative work (which involved my laptop, Google searches, bottles of chardonnay and merlot and even the champagne of beers Miller Hi-life), I came up with crucial information about presidential hopefuls John McCain and Barack Obama — things that you must absolutely keep in mind when casting your vote.

The Look. I like to start with the look. Choosing a political candidate without considering his looks would be dangerously countercultural. It’s what’s on the outside that counts. So even though McCain should be beyond scrutiny because he was a prisoner of war, I read with interest information about his age and health issues, and clearly conclude that he has too many wrinkles.

On the other hand, Obama is well within the parameter of my look scrutiny and he passes with flying colors. Yes, he is after all an attractive man (minus the ears), though a bit dorky, but good looking enough that he could certainly sway my vote on election day.

The Wives. Next, I take into consideration the candidates’ wives because I know they are the ones who really make the important decisions. McCain’s wife is super human. It’s as if she came off Olympus. What’s more, she is extremely wealthy, and as my husband often reminds me, her money comes from beer, a revered beverage. Cindy McCain is also a fan of car racing. I value beauty, money and beer above all else, so she gets high marks in my book.

Michelle Obama, on the other hand, is a real person and suffers by comparison with Cindy because she possesses the human qualities that I struggle with, like a bad hair day or unflattering clothes or trying to balance job and family while her husband drags her around the country. So she is one of the girls. And she also gets a high mark in my election day book.

The Faux Pas. Because of the great privilege of being followed by the media 24/7, I get the chance to scrutinize every word out of the candidates’ mouths. I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that McCain cannot be trusted with foreign policy when he jokes that ‘the only good Iranian is a dead Iranian!’, or that Obama could hardly handle domestic policies if he thinks there are ‘58 states’ in the US. What if he starts concentrating on the other eight states? I say, let’s mike them in the bathroom and I can finally get to the crucial information I need to cast my vote.

In pre-historic times, we used to judge candidates based on their opinions on the matters of the day, but thank goodness those backward days are gone.

Look how much better informed we are today. Just follow my lead and forget about those trivial issues like tax cuts, the war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and health care and you will certainly pick the best man for the job.

Anita Doberman is a freelance writer, mother of five and wife of an Air Force pilot stationed at Hurlburt AFB in Florida. Contact her at: