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. Mary ANn

    Thank you for a perfect analysis of what so many of us are saying. Thank you for taking that monumental step toward the future. We will always have a past good or bad, but now in the darkest times we need to move forward so we do have a future. Obama/Biden is our chance to change our future.

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  2. Mr. Bonkeen

    I applaud you Mr. Buckley, not just because of your independent wit and wisdom but also for being the man who points out that McCain has totally changed and has become erratic and flat out angry!! This Election is NOT about McCain but he is making things personal. It os apparent that Obama is an Intellectual and uses irrefutable judgement in every move. This goes to all Conservatives, that it is important to be NON-PARTISAN and look at Obama for who is is, the GUY with GREAT Leadership potentials and Amazing JUDGEMENT.
    Thank YOU

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  3. NC Voter

    And this is important and newsworthy because? No one barely knows who this guy is. Just another sheep being led to who knows where. Wonder what he gets out of the deal?

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  4. tj

    Fact Check ask, Does McCain's tax plan give tax cuts to CEOs?
    Verdict: True

    Nuff Said!! The geezer once again taking from the poor and giving to the rich! This man is so anti-american it hurts!

    Obama is for the people, not the rich!

    McCain is a sell out.

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  5. karen from charlottesville

    Wonderful. I too am a conservative who believes that Obama has the intelligence, leadership ability and temperment to get us out of this mess. I just do not believe that McCain has it – he has made so many bad choices, from Palin to his campaign style to his "campaign" suspension, that I just don't think he can do the job.

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  6. Mike

    Welcom aboard, conservative America! You are welcome in the party of the PEOPLE.

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  7. Dal CA

    Tide is turning. The conservatives are jumping the SHIP commanded by the Commander McCain.

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  8. ray

    AT LAST A CONSERVATIVE WITH BRAINS UNLIKE THE REST WHO ARE BRAIN DEAD, HANNITY, RUSH AND O'REILLY KILLED THESE MORONS BRAINS

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  9. mw

    Welcome aboard Buckley! I'm sure your parent would agree or at least understand why you made such a good choice.

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  10. suzyku

    Wonderful! A conservative with some smarts and integrity, unlike mccain/palin!

    October 10, 2008 07:44 pm at 7:44 pm |
  11. joyce

    wonderful, welcome

    October 10, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  12. Richard

    He tells it EXACTLY like it is.

    October 10, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  13. Sylvia

    Thank you. Your truthfulness and sincerity shine through this action.

    October 10, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  14. Mike, CA

    we ARE the people we have been waiting for. if you can't see it, I feel sorry for you. If not US, then who? if not NOW, then when? Let's all band together and make this the next greatest generation. Let's make USA 2008-2050, the greatest civilization the world has ever seen. DREAM BIG AMERICA. YES WE CAN

    October 10, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  15. Mark

    Good....now get some other conservatives to back Obama/Biden. 8 years of republican rule has put the world asunder!

    October 10, 2008 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  16. Roger Johnson

    Here is another looser trying to be noticed. There are many of those. People know who they are. Never heard of this guy before. I wonder if any reader even knows who this nut is.

    October 10, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  17. Anna

    How americans can vote for Palin/Mccain duo. What about as the rest of the world. We do not want Palin moron snake in white house.She could be next president of the world who will make decision about life and death of millions people around the globe. Some her supporters could tell me; it is not your business: my answer is : Yes it is my business as
    long America starts wars and people around the world are hurting.
    I am one of those millions , and I never will agree with palin racist
    polices. She is disgrace for all woman and she is disgrace to humanity
    Mccain judgment is worse than my 2 years nice. At least she can
    recognize "good guys" from "bad guys".

    October 10, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  18. Becky in Indiana

    You are not alone!

    I am voting for a Democrat for the first time in my life too!

    It was hard coming out to my Republican family but now my parents and siblings are following suit.

    INDIANA FOR OBAMA!!!

    October 10, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  19. Prof. Madkour

    This is the beginning of the end.

    October 10, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  20. Kevin Kourajian

    This isn't news.
    Please, someone give me three accomplishments that Obama has either sponsored or introduced that qualify him for the presidency. Not statements, not speeches, real accomplishments. Don't bother asking me about McCains, I'm looking for Obama's. Give me three. I'll help you by giving you the first one. He's a sitting Senator. Looking for two more. Prove me wrong.

    October 10, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  21. Chris from NY

    Thank God there world Bucleyare still some Republicans with brains. Welcome to our .

    October 10, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  22. PCS / North Carolina

    Excellent, the Reptilian party is done. The selfish "me only" neocons. GOP neocons are having Klansman like rallys. They spew hatred, and says " We are stunned", "We are mad" by Obamas popularity. What do they expect, when we are going through the GREATEST DEPRESSION . Did we have prosperous 8yrs of GOP Presidency ?

    With the current state of the economy, Job losses, health care crisis, vanishing 401k /retirement, You should either be an IDIOT Or a religious fanatic to vote for the GOP.

    GOP, DO NOT SPEW HATRED, THIS COULD LEAD TO ELECTION VIOLENCE LIKE WAHT YOU SEE IN OTHER COUNTRIES AROUND THE WORLD. YOU ALL WILL BE RESPONSIBLE FOR INCITING VIOLENCE.

    October 10, 2008 07:46 pm at 7:46 pm |
  23. Georgia Democrat

    Go Buckley, McCain is Bi-Polar

    October 10, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  24. AHMIowa

    This is great news – a real conservative, putting his COUNTRY FIRST. I think your dad would be proud!

    October 10, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  25. Gorbashov - Long Beach, Ca.

    Thank you for having the guts to speak what you really feel!

    While your dad may have disagrred I'm sure he would have been proud of that!

    October 10, 2008 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
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