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. American en canada

    QUE VIVA OBAMA ESA LO MEJOR QUE TENEMOS PARA PRESIDENTE DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS DE AMERICA

    VOTE POR OBAMA

    October 10, 2008 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    BINGO...

    October 10, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  3. Helen,Ft Lauderdale

    Hopefully more conservatives will follow Mr. Buckley's lead and vote for Obama. He is definitely the better choice and at least he didn't choose an airhead for his Vice President.

    October 10, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  4. Fern Woo

    John McCain's recent irrascible behavior would alarm anyone with common sense and decency. Not surprised that he would be losing more and more moderate notables from his own party even among well known stalwarts like David Brooks and now Christopher Buckley.

    I used to think of John McCain as one of my favorate Republicans in Congress. I was going to vote for Obama but felt quite comfortable should McCain become President.....two months ago. Now I am quite fearful of the prospect.

    October 10, 2008 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  5. McPalin

    Ouch!!!!!!! He does have a point, when Bush used the same tactics against McCain during their last primaries, McCain was mad because even if Bush did not approved the attacks he was still benefiting from them. Now as a surprise to many undecided like myself McCain goes and hires the same people that worked for Bush and uses the same type of smear tactics on Obama but now it is all good because he is the one favoring from them. Hypocrite!!!!
    By the way, why aren't all the republicans that formed part of the same committies with Obama and Ayers not terrorists? McCain really thinks that we are just plain stupid.

    October 10, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  6. Michael, Mi

    And add to this the news just released that Ms. Palin did indeed abuse her power as governor and is in violation of ethics law in that state......well, the nails just keep getting hammered into McCain's coffin.

    October 10, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  7. Bradley

    @Aware,

    Want to speak of hypocrites, just take a look at the Republican party. They used to be the party of limited government involvement in both people's economic AND PERSONAL lives. In the 80's and 90's Republicans railed against the concept of being politically correct because it was government intervening in people's lives and minds.

    Now, Republicans want to tell people who they can marry, who they can talk to (don't have a Muslim friend or else you are subject to wiretaps), and who you can or can not sleep with or marry.

    The Republicans of today are the most hypocritical bunch of politicians in the world. They came to power by fighting political correctness, only to embrace their own brand of it by bedding down with Christian fundamentalists.

    I was raised in a Republican household. My father has voted a straight Republican ticket in every election since 1956... at least he has until this year. This year, for the first time ever, he is voting for a Democrat – Barack Obama – because he doesn't feel that the Republican party holds true to conservative ideals anymore. And that is sad when a liberal Senator is a truer conservative than the Republican Presidential candidate.

    October 10, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  8. Steve, Jacksonville, FL

    As a lifelong Liberal, I had respect for the late William F. Buckley even though I strongly disagreed with his Conservative political beliefs. The current Republican party does not even come close to true conservatism. Like the rest of the country, Christopher Buckley recognizes Barack Obama is the best choice to lead our country through the turbulent times ahead. John McCain has been ineffective in getting across any coherent message to the American people about where he stands on the issues facing our country.

    October 10, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  9. Amber, VA

    Thank you Mr. Buckley. Landslide? I can smell it.

    October 10, 2008 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  10. duey

    Good for Mr. Buckley. If one puts all bias and politics aside and exercise reason and intellect, Obama is the only sane and logical conclusion. Sure he may be idealistic and his rhetoric lofty, but that's not at all a bad thing. Anybody who honestly thinks Palin is ready or qualified to be Vice President isn't being honest with themselves, or isn't thinking straight (or at all). McCain lost all respectability and credibility when he picked Palin, and clearly didn't put "Country First." More like "McCountry First".

    October 10, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  11. April Garlow

    As a woman that has seen so many women and children threatened and abused by men,Sarah and Todd thank you so much for trying to get a rogue cop ,that tasered an 11year old child, off the force. My love and esteem for you as true defenders of those who are ignored by our justice system ,has doubled. I would hope that all our political leaders would have the guts and the courage to stand up to bullies that intimidate and terrorize those that are weaker, and fearful of being harmed. In my eyes you are true heros.I would go to the ends of the earth to protect my sisters and their children.This domestic situation is the reason our women's rights movement began. Bless you for being true feminists.

    October 10, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  12. Jay (Toronto Canada)

    I like this guy... hope goes a long way... wow... I am so so so amazed and have renewed respect for the American society as a whole... we are watching and Obama has and is inspiring us all.... WE ARE NOW CONVINCED AND WE BELIEVE... WHITES IN AMERICA SUPPORTING OBAMA IS ALREADY CHANGING MY PERSONAL VIEWS... I AM VERY SHOCKED AND RESPECTFUL OF WHITE AMERICANS... YOU HAVE SENT A MESSAGE... I FORGIVE YOU FOR WRONGS DONE IN THE PAST TO MY FELLOW BLACK IN AMERICA... WE HAVE NOT BECOME BROTHERS... YOU HAVE NO CLUE WHAT YOU HAVE DONE... KEEP IT UP....FROM YOUR BLACK BROTHERS NORTH OR THE BORDER..

    October 10, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  13. Bald ex-warrior

    I guess not all the conversatitive Republicans are idiot Diddo-heads.

    Score one for reasonable thinking.

    Obama/Biden 08
    Vision/Experience

    October 10, 2008 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
  14. NANCY, MONTANA

    We just hope other conservatives fairly discern the insurmountable McCain/Pahlin weaknesses and vote for Obama.

    October 10, 2008 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  15. DJ Jazzy Jeff

    hahahahahahahaha! you have to be kidding, right? it truly is a new world order w/ the obama crowd. i cannot believe how many educated people support this farce.

    October 10, 2008 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  16. Mike

    The problem with the McCain camp is that in trying to appeal to the lowest common denominator in the GOP base, they have successfully distanced themselves from their intellectual base.

    McCains campaign may go down in history as one of the worst run s for the presidential bid. You can't blow smoke up everyones ***!

    October 10, 2008 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  17. TCE

    Sound judgement transcends politics. Thank you.

    October 10, 2008 09:29 pm at 9:29 pm |
  18. Lyndon,CA

    WHAT'S THIS, MORE RATS JUMPING THE SHIP?

    October 10, 2008 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  19. Common Sense

    Let the Floodgates of undecided and concervatives be opened!

    October 10, 2008 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  20. tuhle, VA

    again, the Palin factor

    October 10, 2008 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  21. keith Franklin, Tn

    Well welll...finally...a voice of reason from a conservative.

    The recent attacks of conservatives and the hate mongering tactics remind me of the McCarthy days when he almost destroyed our country in the 1950's.

    GOP...have you no shame?????????

    When I think of the possibility of Palin as VP, it makes Cheney look like an angel. We all can thank Gingrich and Rove for this hateful tactics.

    Conservative leadership in this country has never helped our economy.

    October 10, 2008 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  22. Common Sense in TX

    Not to split hairs but are we talking republican or conservative. How any true conservative can be happy with either choice is beyond me.

    McCain wants to socialize the real estate industry and Nobama wants to socialize everything. Now the Bush administration wants the government to own banks. WAKE UP AMERICA BEFORE IT'S TOO LATE!

    October 10, 2008 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  23. tedious898

    aware October 10th, 2008 8:53 pm ET

    Poor choice!

    Obama encourages people to see themselves as victims instead of creative problem solvers!

    And, encourages them to put their hand out instead of putting their hand to the task!

    **************************
    You are anything but! Do you live in a cave without tv, radio or local newspaper service? I can't tell you how many times I've heard Obama say he will need the help of americans to correct this major cluster "you know what"? ...he said "parents tell the kids to put the games down and turn off the tv etc.

    Welll the verdict is in ...YOU'RE AN IDIOT! DEAF AND BLIND TO BOOT

    October 10, 2008 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  24. TATANKA

    IT SOUNDS LIKE OLE CHRIS HAS GOOD COMMON SENSE. HE HAS MADE THE RIGHT CHOICE FOR SURE.

    I AM VOTING FOR THAT ONE GO O AND JOE

    October 10, 2008 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  25. Chris, Tustin CA

    A succinct summary of why many conservatives support Obama.

    October 10, 2008 09:32 pm at 9:32 pm |
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