Like many Baalei Teshuva I was raised in a community that was mostly Democrat and now find myself in a mostly Republican voting Orthodox community. Although I have voted Republican in some previous Presidential elections, I still believe in many of the values and ideas that the Democrats represent.
Compassion for the poor and needy, which is consistent with Torah-values, seems to be more of a concern of the Democrats despite the appearance in recent years of Compassionate Conservatism.
Hesitancy to rely so much on unregulated markets seems to be sensible, especially given the recent markets collapse.
A less war-centered foreign policy seems logical given the limited successes of our recent conflicts and the unsustainable costs of continuing the current policy.
The current policy in the Middle East does not seem to have strengthened Israel’s position in the region. Clearly there are no easy solutions here, but I’m not sure either party has won the right to proclaim they are the “true” friend of Israel.
On the issue of Obama the man, versus McCain the man, if we put aside the mudslinging for a second, the issue seems to comes down to experience. It seems like Jewish History is replete with examples of young smart people successfully assuming great responsibilities.
All these issues are obviously much more complex than can be reflected in a blog post, but I’m not sure why I have to be apologetic because I am considering voting Democrat and find that some of their policies resonate with me.
I find much of the discussion on these issues in the community to be a little simplistic and I was hoping that perhaps this forum of thoughtful participants could possibly yield some fruitful discussion. Is anybody else still holding on to some Democratic values?