Good Surprise: Senator Brownback

Category: By Christian
A little over a year ago I figured that Senator Sam Brownback (R-KS) was most certainly angling for a Presidential run in '08. He had come out with some pretty harsh words against the President after Harriet Miers was nominated to succeed Justice O'Connor on the Supreme Court (and rightly so). It seemed as though he was playing to the extreme socially conservative base of the Republican Party at a time when they felt the President was abandoning their agenda. Let's just say the idea of "President Brownback" wasn't all that thrilling to me.

My how things change in 14 short months.

Last week there was an article in the Kansas City Star outlining his post-Thanksgiving plans. First, he was going to get and HIV test, and then he was going to visit a prison in Louisiana to bring to light creative and effective means of rehabilitating prisoners. They are efforts to get awareness out about very important issues, though I must admit that I never thought a Republican Senator from rural Kansas would be one of the catalysts of such initiatives.

The best part? It's a result of his faith.

“There’s this great coming together taking place, left and right, on Africa, on global health issues...This could be a moment where a broader vision can catch on among people of faith, and among political activists, the further left the better. They care deeply about these issues. Here’s a chance to have a broad public basis of support. It’s a beautiful moment if we don’t mess it up.”

Africa, global health, fixing a broken prison system and AIDS awareness. Wow.

Today was the kicker, though. Apparently a lot of rich people are finding out that significant parts of their financial portfolios contain investments in the Sudan. These investments then put money in the warlord's pockets, and these warlords then use the funds to keep on with the genocide in the country. Sen. Brownback has not only called for people to divest from their Sudanese investments, but he's doing it himself to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars.

I've never given money to a political candidate before, but if Sen. Brownback does run for President then I'm cutting a check. He can promote some conversations in churches and in the political establishment that need to happen, and I really think that he could change the focus of elections.

The sad irony is that since I didn't want to be a part of the Right Wing juggernaut in KS, I can't vote for him in the primary. Blast.

Nonetheless, he's in my top-4 for '08. Brownback, Obama, Edwards and McCain. Now that would be a sweet election. Unfortunately, there are two blowhards from NY who have tons of money and are lacking the candor and original ideas that my final-4 owould bring to the table. Hey, I can always dream can't I?

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