Rep. Hector Velez: "I Am Crossing Party Lines
To Vote For John McCain"
October 29, 2008
While Barack Obama talks a good game about being able to unite this country, as a former Hillary Clinton supporter who has closely examined both his words and actions, I don't see it that way at all.
I and a growing number of my fellow Democratic elected officials in New Hampshire believe that it is actually John McCain who is best able to bring us together as a country and a people, will inspire a new American unity and patriotism and will push all of us to work together to solve our most pressing challenges at home and abroad.
Given the fact that I am making a difficult decision to cross party lines to support Sen. McCain, I thought it would be useful to explain why I am joining a growing number of Democrats (including three lifelong Democratic state representatives who have endorsed John McCain in just the last month) in this state who are uniting to elect John McCain as our next President.
While Obama talks of putting partisan politics aside, the reality is that his record in the U.S. Senate shows he has voted with Democrats 97 percent of the time. He has never once taken on the Democratic Party on even a single issue.
John McCain, on the other hand, has never allowed partisan politics and Washington political scorekeeping to come before the greater good of what is necessary for this nation. I have seen him time after time rise above the political pettiness in Washington politics to get things done for this country to make it more safe, secure and prosperous. He has taken on people in his own party time and time again and has made many in the Republican Party leadership upset which, I can tell you as a Democrat, first caught my attention and showed that he will put country over partisanship.
As a former Hillary supporter, I certainly do not agree with John McCain on everything; but, what I most like most about John McCain is that he has proven continually that we can trust him to do what is right for our country.
Perhaps lifelong Democrat Joe Lieberman said it best when he endorsed Sen. McCain by saying, "We desperately need our next President to break through the reflexive partisanship that is poisoning our politics and stopping us from getting things done. We need a President who can reunite our country, restore faith in our government, and rebuild confidence in America's future."
As a Democratic legislator, I appreciate John McCain's relentless efforts to find solutions that will reduce our dependence on foreign oil while increasing our energy security. He knows that we cannot stake our nation's energy supply on the whims of authoritarian leaders in foreign countries like Saudi Arabia and Russia and we must develop alternative energy sources to achieve energy security and greatly reduce our reliance on imported oil. He has been in the forefront on this issue and climate change as well, which not many Republicans can say.
John McCain has proven that he has the experience, the courage and the strength of character to be our commander-in-chief from day one.
Barack Obama, for all of his lofty rhetoric, simply does not and that is probably why you have seen such a shift over the last few weeks in former Hillary Clinton supporters in New Hampshire and a lot of Democrats in general to McCain.
If you are like me, you don't agree with John McCain on every single issue either, but you know you can always count on him to be honest with you about where he stands and you can rely on him to fight for what he believes is right for our country -- regardless of pressure from politicians, party members, lobbyists or special interest groups. His quick and decisive response to the financial crisis where he suspended his campaign to address the issue in Washington is indicative of this.
We need a president who rises above partisan politics, is a proven leader and someone who can reunite our country, restore faith in our government and return America to prosperity.
John McCain is just that person and I would urge you to vote for him next week.