Friday, December 14, 2007
Torn between candidates
--John King, CNN Chief National Correspondent

Today I'm studying new polls reminding us yet again how unpredictable this campaign is, talking to Ed Rollins about his new role in the Huckabee campaign, and thinking of Erin Flanagan.

Her brother was killed in Iraq two years ago this week. Erin is a mother of three, a New Hampshire independent who can vote in either party's primary -- and torn between the two candidates who most need the support of independents in the state: Barack Obama and John McCain.

We first met her when she asked a question at a Republican debate six months ago, and recently visited with her at her home in Bedford, NH.

She's struggling because she's not sure if McCain is right when he says, "Stay and succeed." Or whether Obama is right when he says, "Set the troops out as soon as possible."

"I don't know the best way to get out of the situation that we're in now," Erin says. "I could vote either way and they are very different candidates... I want to cast the right vote and I don't know what that is."
Posted By CNN: 5:54 PM ET
  11 Comments
Hi John,

I have to agree with Ms. Flanagan. This may be the most important election and I too am undecided.

I'm torn between three candidates. But, there are so many issues that are of a concern to me... the war, the economy and immigration. Picking the right candidate to vote for is proving to be a real challenge.

Thanks,
Mindy
Surprise, AZ
Posted By Anonymous Mindy : 6:42 PM ET
I'm also torn between candidates.
I don't know if it's the choices or if it's just me. I'm narrowing it down though, so I guess that's progress..Time is running out!

Lorie Ann, Buellton, Calif.
Posted By Blogger Lorie Ann : 10:28 PM ET
The country at this time needs to change how it does things we are stuck in the old way's of things I don't want the country run by either democrate or republicane Im either Im an Independent I don't understand how come we are so versitile on everything else but when it comes down to the important things.Thats like comming in this world and having to pick who you want to live with your mom or your dad it takes two to run a stable family
Posted By Anonymous Anonymous : 10:42 AM ET
I THINK IT'S PRETTY EVIDENT THAT THIS ELECTION WILL DETERMINE THE FUTURE OF CIVILIZATION AS WE KNOW IT, BUT I DON'T AGREE THAT THOSE ARE HER ONLY OPTIONS.

UNFORTUNATELY, I AM NOT A CITIZEN (PERMANANT RESIDENT) SO I CANNOT VOTE, BUT I DO FEEL IT IS MY RESPONSIBILITY TO SEE THAT EVERYONE WHO DOES VOTE; DOES IT WITH THE UTMOST KNOWLEDGE AND UNDERSTANDING OF THEIR OPTIONS.

I HAVE CONSIDERED MYSELF A LIBERAL DEMOCRAT SINCE I CAN REMEMBER, BUT I THINK THE TIME FOR CHOOSING SIDES IS OVER. WE NEED NOT LOOK AT IT AS RIGHT OR LEFT ANYMORE. WE NEED TO STAND BACK AND LOOK AT THE ENTIRE SPECTRUM AND REALIZE THAT LOOKING AT THINGS WITH BLACK & WHITE EYES ONLY LIMITS US.

I URGE HER TO LOOK INTO CANDIDATES LIKE RON PAUL. IGNORE THE FACT THAT IT SAYS REPUBLICAN! AND JUST LISTEN TO WHAT HE STANDS FOR.

THIS IS SO COMPLICATE FOR ME BECAUSE I AM A MEXICAN IMMIGRANT AND SOME OF HIS IDEALS GOVERNING ISSUES SUCH AS IMMIGRATION, DON'T NECESSARILY COINCIDE WITH MY OWN.

HOWEVER, OTHER ISSUES THAT HE FIGHTS FOR ARE MUCH MORE INPORTANT AND BIGGER THAN MYSELF, SO I MUST OVERLOOK THEM, AND I ASK THAT YOU OVERLOOK WHAT PARTY HE IS WITH AND JUST LISTEN.

WITH HOPE IN MY HEART,
CRISTIAN B.
LOS ANGELES, CA.
Posted By Anonymous DESPERATE_FOR_SALVATION : 2:01 PM ET
I disagree with the problem of picking someone. Its very simple. Allwe need to is pick who will do the least damage. We will not see the results of the new presidents decisions until long after they are gone. Since Obama and McCain seem to be least likely to accomplish anything that would damage America after being elected we should vote for one of them. Now I don not think that these Candidates are bad potential presidents. I just believe that if they are picked they will be blocked with abnormal Senate and Congressional red tape that it will be impossible to accomplish anything worthwhile.
What we really need is someone who will do anything and everything to get the job done. We have not had a president like that since the WW2 era. I believe its just a matter of time before we sell off America to our new Chinese oppressors for Wal*Mart goods with Indian customer service.
Posted By Anonymous X4V13R Philly PA : 1:35 AM ET
Senior citizens 70 and over will have a very big say in who is elected President. Senior citizens will get out and vote in wheel chairs, on crutches or what ever while the young are too lazy to take the time to vote.

As a 77 year old woman I and many of my friends will NOT vote for Hillary Clinton because we do not trust her, do not like her snobbish attitude and feel as first lady she didn't do any worth mentioning.

Our votes will go to John Edwards and we are e-mailing our friends to support John Edwards so you young people who complain and do nothing, Will YOU take time to vote instead of complaning????

Show compassion and not Hate!!! Bring our soldiers home!!!
Posted By Anonymous Anonymous : 10:48 AM ET
I have never voted in my life I never wanted to vote for a lie.I feel sorry for the people that beleived in Bush.
Posted By Blogger Heidi Ann Berg : 11:59 AM ET
I would like to know what the canididates are going to do about were are taxes are really being spent and what the churches money is really going.There is no reason why people in africa or our own back yard have children that are straving...It comes a time to put the money into real people .We over pay the sports players we over pay actors.Teachers are under paid..caregivers are underpaid ..Are great firemen are underpaid the elderly are being abussed and missed treated the list goes on and on
Posted By Blogger Heidi Ann Berg : 12:06 PM ET
Hello, I'm not sure why Huckabee is out in front in Iowa. If the recent Rolling Stone article was correct in quoting him -- that people have only been around for 2000 years or so, I wonder if that was a mis-quote or human kind has given up on scientific discoveries? How about the great houses of the Anasazi in New Mexico which were built to preserve heat. & cool in the summer time ,built way before Christ? We need some one in theWhite house who is both Spiritual and rational.
Posted By Anonymous Anonymous : 5:31 PM ET
Hi John,

Do you guys think the Iraq plans listed in the 'Issues' section of the candidates' respective websites provide enough detail for somebody like Michael Ware to be able to assess their viability, and pros/cons? And if so, are the plans different enough for such analysis to be worthwhile? I too have doubt about which candidate stands the best chance of moving the situation forward.

PS I remember Erin from the debate - hope you are doing well :)
Posted By Anonymous Erika : 4:36 AM ET
If Erin wants what's best for the troops and America, and if her choice is between Obama and McCain, I think her choice is relatively easy. McCain has much more experience all around. He has served in government longer and he has served very honorably in the military. Neither can be said of Obama. McCain has been proven in battle, if you will.

In any case, I would strongly recommend Erin seriously consider not voting Democrat. Our biggest challenge is terrorism and national security. If you ask a Democrat, our biggest challenge is global warming and such. They left us ill-prepared for 911 and have already forgotten the bloody lessons learned on that day.

I thank Erin and her family for their great sacrifice. With all of our persistent enemies, America would not survive without heroes such as your brother. Don't let others fool you. He did not die in vein and he will not be forgotten.

Joe
Chicago, IL
Posted By Anonymous Anonymous : 11:38 AM ET
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