Diary of an undecided voter (GOP convention edition)

Summary:There are probably less than 10% of Americans who haven't decided on who to vote for in the November Presidential election. Yet, it's often the undecided voters, like ZDNet Government's own David Gewirtz, that eventually choose the winner. Here's David's review of the GOP convention.

Most Americans have already made up their minds who they're going to vote for. Some will just vote down party lines. Others have decided early on that they dislike President Obama or they dislike Mitt Romney and will vote for the other candidate.

See also: An undecided voter on President Obama's convention

But about ten percent of us have still not made up our minds. I'm not going to go into detail in this article why I'm still undecided, but the fact is, I'm disturbed by facets of both candidates and their parties and haven't yet determined who's the lesser of evils.

I'll probably write about those facets in another article, but for now, I'm kicking off a series of posts on how -- as an undecided voter -- I view the political events leading up to the election.

This week, the discussion is the GOP convention. Next week, it'll be the Democratic convention. Following that, in October, will be the debates.

So, let's get started. There were five speeches I was really interested in watching. I'll discuss them in the order they were presented to the public, starting with Ann Romney on Tuesday and ending up with Mitt Romney on Thursday.

Ann Romney

There's no doubt Ann Romney is a charming woman and would make a suitable First Lady. It does seem odd, though, this far into the 21st century, that we still trot the spouse of a candidate out into the glare of public lights to both testify to the goodness of the candidate and prove, somehow, that she's somehow motherly enough to be a First Lady.

In any case, Ann Romney fits the bill. She's a fine speaker. For a woman who has suffered a variety of severe medical ailments, she looks far younger than her 63 years.

And, testify she did. According to Ann, Mitt's a loving father and good husband. How could he be anything else? She gave a good speech, but I gained no deeper understanding of the man or his family, nor did it help sway my opinion in any way.

No mention was made of Seamus the dog or his 650-mile trip to Canada on the roof of the Romney's Chevy Caprice station wagon.

For the record, the dog was in a carrier, and the young Romneys had apparently installed some sort of wind barrier to protect the pooch. Frankly, with five kids (a 2-year old, 5-year old, 8-year old, 12-year old, and 13-year old) in the passenger compartment of the vehicle, I think the dog was probably much happier on the roof and away from the chaos.

My guess is that if he could, Mitt Romney himself would have prefered to trade places with the dog for that ride, just for a little peace and quiet. Are we there yet?

Next up: Condoleezza Rice and Paul Ryan

Topics: Government, Government : US


In addition to hosting the ZDNet Government and ZDNet DIY-IT blogs, CBS Interactive's Distinguished Lecturer David Gewirtz is an author, U.S. policy advisor and computer scientist. He is featured in The History Channel special The President's Book of Secrets, is one of America's foremost cyber-security experts, and is a top expert on savi... Full Bio

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