October 10th, 2008
11:08 PM ET
6 years ago

A Buckley endorses Obama

Christopher Buckley, son of William F. Buckley, is backing Obama.
Christopher Buckley, son of William F. Buckley, is backing Obama.

(CNN) - No, hell has not frozen over, but a Buckley is backing a Democrat for president.

Christopher Buckley, the son of the late conservative icon William F. Buckley, said Friday he's decided to back Barack Obama's White House bid, the first time in his life he will vote Democrat.

“It’s a good thing my dear old mum and pup [sic] are no longer alive. They’d cut off my allowance," Buckley, a columnist for the conservative National Review, wrote on the Web site The Daily Beast Friday.

Buckley, who praised McCain in a New York Times Op-Ed earlier this year and defended the Arizona senator's conservative credentials against wary talk-radio hosts, said McCain is no longer the “real” and “unconventional” man he once admired.

"This campaign has changed John McCain," Buckley wrote. "It has made him inauthentic. A once-first class temperament has become irascible and snarly; his positions change, and lack coherence; he makes unrealistic promises, such as balancing the federal budget 'by the end of my first term.' Who, really, believes that?

"Then there was the self-dramatizing and feckless suspension of his campaign over the financial crisis," Buckley added. "His ninth-inning attack ads are mean-spirited and pointless. And finally, not to belabor it, there was the Palin nomination. What on earth can he have been thinking?"

But Buckley made clear he's not just voting against McCain, praising Obama for his "first-class temperament and first-class intellect."

"Obama has in him—I think, despite his sometimes airy-fairy 'We are the people we have been waiting for' silly rhetoric—the potential to be a good, perhaps even great leader. He is, it seems clear enough, what the historical moment seems to be calling for," Buckley wrote.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (873 Responses)
  1. voter

    welcome aboard. glad to see that some people are not falling for the negative tactics of McCain. Put country first and vote democrat.

    October 10, 2008 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  2. VA will go BLUE!!!!!!!!!

    The painful truth that all republicans must now face. The Republican party is in shambles.

    October 10, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  3. WOW!!!

    WOW!!!!!! Now this is going to hurt McCain...

    October 10, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  4. OBAMA/BIDEN '08

    Another Republican comes to his senses. Obama/Biden is what the country has been waiting for and been in need of...calm, intelligent leadership in the White House.

    Go Obama/Biden '08

    October 10, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  5. dustin

    the smart conservatives are starting to see mccain for who he is

    October 10, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  6. VETS4Obama

    WOW....an honest Republican? How rare!!! Good for you Christopher

    October 10, 2008 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  7. Ronald

    Everyone with a brain, both Republican and Democrat has come to realize. Obama is a decent man with an intelligent plan. McBush is an angry confused old man of below average intelligence and a nasty despicable campaign.

    October 10, 2008 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  8. MarioB. from Berlin for OBAMA/BIDEN

    nice :)
    FInally some conservatives begin to wake up, vote Obama and make clear, the 2000's McCain is completely opposite of this year's one!!!

    wtg America :)

    Newsweek has Obama leading by 11% :)

    Obama/Biden in a landslide!

    October 10, 2008 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  9. OHIO FOR OBAMA

    Way to go Buckley. Welcome aboard the OBAMA EXPRESS, headed to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

    October 10, 2008 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  10. Patrick

    My kind of conservative. Mark my words, the Sarah Palin evangelicals will destroy the Republican Party.

    October 10, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  11. Ya Think?

    It's a new day people. Hope and change not hopeless and deranged. Get it together and help pull our country together and our lives with it.

    October 10, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  12. Lenoroc

    It's nice to see Obama reaching across party lines, namely those of disgruntled Republicans who are seeing the candidates for who they are. The CNN fact check even keeps debunking McCain's "truths."

    October 10, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  13. Anne

    well McCain he isnt the only one who thinks you are off the rails and arent to be trusted.

    October 10, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  14. Jeff from Wisconsin

    This is a great example of one being truly open minded and voting their conscience rather than party lines. Now, if only every one else could do the same and look beyond race, etc...

    October 10, 2008 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  15. Joe

    Welcome aboard!

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 10, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  16. Kelly Smith

    Yay, we welcome you. I hope you become a lifelong Democrat :)

    October 10, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  17. SoCal

    It's interesting how people with ideas and who really put their country first – regardless of their political background – come to the same conclusion: "Obama has the potential to be a good, perhaps even great leader".

    October 10, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  18. Wendel, Lakeland, FL

    Thanks for your support. Hopefully, more conservative Republicans can follow suit. God bless you.

    October 10, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  19. Theogracias

    One more Buckley and we have....wait for it.....a Buckley's mixture!

    October 10, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  20. jeff - Dallas

    Actually I think hell HAS frozen over!!

    50 year old college educated white Texan for Obama

    October 10, 2008 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  21. JOfromATLforObamaBiden

    Another one jumping over to the democratic team. You have to be more than brain dead to vote for Mccain. I mean this guy put it nice and simple...that bimbo that mccain selected has no experience, if he dies tomorrow, because belive me he is already in Gods waiting room..this bimbo will take over...can't even speak..let alone run this country. Mccains tactics are dirty and racial, we dont need a president that wants to devide the people..we already had that with bush.

    Obama/biden 08

    October 10, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  22. Lesley

    Excellent endorsement! He said everything I have been thinking but it's so much more powerful coming from a staunch Repub conservative. McCain has lost his glow, among other things. I am heartened to see that even conservatives are acknowledging that John McCain is not the person or leader he once was. It confirms that it is McCain who is putting himself first before the country.

    October 10, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    when the Republicans turn on their own you know it's game over! McCain is going to have to start calling Obama an alien soon to get air time

    October 10, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  24. Adam in Omaha

    This republican and his family is voting Obama this year. Glad to see another!

    I am switching to democrat after the election though!

    October 10, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  25. S. Holt

    Well stated, 'what a historical moment is calling for.' Welcome on board the Obama/Biden train of the future.

    October 10, 2008 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
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