What I want in a Presidential Candidate
First of all, I believe the greatest need this country has is for a strong program of national security. In my opinion, that means having a military that can defend us against aggression, and able to respond to attacks both on our soil and anywhere in the world our enemies might gather. That will require increasing the size, training, and equipment of the Armed Forces, primarily Army and Marines, and continuing the war against Islamic extremism. National security also means secure borders and a revised and strengthened immigration program. A strong economy, too, is necessary for national security, both now and in the long run. Education, too, plays a major role in national security. We need to return to an educational process that provides the best opportunities for the most people. Finally, we need to focus on national vulnerabilities (dependence upon foreign oil, raw materials, etc.) and how to reduce them.
Secondly, we need to reduce or eliminate deficit spending. This will require revisiting existing expenditures as well as any future commitments. Nothing should be "off the table" - from Medicare and Social Security to federal funding for education and crop subsidies. Raising taxes should be the ultimate last resort, after everything else has been done.
Thirdly, I believe we need to drastically reduce the size and scope of government. We need to eliminate wasteful and duplicate activities. We need to reconsider how the current executive branch of the government is organized, its size, and its missions and goals.
Finally, we need to return to the Constitutionally mandated roles for the Congressional, Executive, and Judicial branches of the government, and re-establish the checks and balances that have been so abused by all branches that they are virtually extinct.
These four things are of primary importance to me, and I will choose a presidential choice based upon how well a candidate expresses himself/herself on these issues.
I'll expand upon these comments in other articles to be posted later.