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Is this really all we have to pick from in November?

Hillary Clinton has vivid memories of landing during sniper fire in Bosnia. While her memory is a bit different than the other passengers on the flight, it made for a great speech about her being tough enough to lead our military. She recalls how hard she fought behind the scenes against her husband on passing NAFTA, but apparently her interpretation of fighting hard is a bit different than those around the White House at the time. But I am sure her negotiating skills with foreign leaders will be superior to her negotiating skills with Bill. Suggesting that she is qualified to run the nation is akin to Mamie Eisenhower asserting the same in 1959.

Hillary's team is well versed in sniper fire – at least the kind they have directed nonstop at Barack since the discovery of America's preference of him over their queen bee. Maybe James Carville is right! Gov. Bill Richardson may be Judas, which would make Hillary the anti-Christ given the real Christ already came ... just a thought. I always laugh when someone says Hillary is the devil yet now, who knows?

Then there is the newly minted, modern-day, black version of JFK: Barack Obama. He's the fresh prince of Chicago, complete with a crazy preacher and a scandal-plagued businessman, also from Chicago. Has anything good or scandal-free come from that city? Barack is going to fix the economy, end racism, cure AIDS, regain world respect and free the planet from greenhouse gases without ever specifically explaining the method. Sounds like the Kerry strategy of ending the war in Iraq during his presidential run in '04. He would only tell us if we elected him. Oh well. I guess we will never know of the great Kerry plan to end terrorism and the Iraq war.

If words count, as Barack suggests, we'd better start listening more carefully.

Barack Obama, without a doubt, is a brilliant orator. His speeches send chills down the spines of certain folks. Just ask Chris Matthews. Unfortunately, he can deliver the line but not remember the substance behind it. Such lines are designed to CONvince you that a vote for him is a vote to save the world. Fascinating, the first three letters of that word. If you've ever been conned, as I have, I bet you got a chill when the con man spoke. Thus I join Chris in his experience every time Obama serves up one of his eloquent speeches. But the chill I get doesn't inspire me, it worries me.

And then there is Juan McCain, senator from my home state of Arizona, war hero, "straight talker," and moderate politician who came so close in 2000 – but no cigar. He is a fighter and will hang in there right until the bitter end on issues he believes in.

Kissing the ring of Ted Kennedy, he attempted to provide amnesty to 15 million lawbreakers by way of comprehensive immigration reform. The citizens stopped him. He joined liberals in voting against the Bush tax cuts, referring to them as being "for the rich." Thankfully the tax cuts passed. He reached across the aisle to usurp Americans' First Amendment right in campaign finance reform. Now he is swinging from that very rope. Barack's loose change is McCain's envy. And soon coming from Juan McCain ... Kyoto Protocol.

The biggest problem we face with Juan is chronological. He may have a mom who is in great shape for her years, but she didn't spend time at the Hanoi Hilton with Hop Sing pouring her special tea and finger sandwiches. Literally. Torture does take years off your life, you know. That is why Juan wants the fine guests at Gitmo to be spared the experience – regardless if the treatment yields intel that may stop another attack.

In a country of more than 300 million people, are the three amigos running for president the very best we have to offer? Can we salvage this election? Is there a combo of president/vice president that would make sense? A team we can feel good about voting for?

Well, if Hillary would go home and not destroy the Democratic Party, Barack may pick a suitable VP. But I don't suspect Hillary will go home, so her party is going to experience tremendous damage. If by some chance the Dems go to Denver without a clear cut winner, it could get really ugly, really fast.

Can you see Barack going to the convention leading in pledged delegates and the popular vote and the Clintons engineering a superdelegate takeover? The summer of 2008 will make the summers of 1919 and 1967 look like a Si Se Puede rally. I would not put anything past Bill and Hillary, and the country should be prepared for the Clinton scorched-earth policy. If they can't have it, no Democrat will. America will suffer for Hillary's stubborn selfishness.

Those in the Democratic Party, that for years claimed George Bush stole the election from Al Gore, may now have Hillary stealing it from Barack. This would elevate Rev. Jeremiah Wright to a thoughtful prophet, instead of a crazed racist, in some people's eyes. I just love Democrats, especially when they are caught in their own folly!

So Barack needs to get to Pennsylvania and work his bottom off. He needs to go from college to college motivating young people to convince (there is that word again) their parents to vote Obama. Then maybe Clinton will accept defeat and save the country from a long, hot summer.

On the Republican side, McCain would be well served to put his blimp-sized ego in his back pocket and announce Mitt Romney as his vice presidential candidate. That way the Republicans could offer the country a viable team to lead the nation through the tough times that lie ahead.

McCain could focus on the number one job as commander in chief: keeping the country safe. Mitt Romney can work on getting the economy back on track using his years of success in the business world. Romney is a brilliant leader and businessman. He understands what needs to be done. He will allow free-market capitalism to rebuild the country, not big government. He can keep McCain focused on the principle that ideal government is less government, and that limited government and personal responsibility is best for the future of all Americans.

These are the differences to focus on in November. The Democrats will promote more government programs to fix all human problems: Free health care for all, bailouts for people who should have never bought a house, entitlements as far as the eye can see. All the while, they will blame big business for everything that is wrong. Then they will tax the snot out of the rich, which now includes most Americans in their definition, so there will be plenty of money to provide for Americans who won't take care of themselves.

The way I see this election is simple. If you want bigger government, more regulation, more taxation and more subsidies, vote Democratic. With the exception of keeping you safe, the Dems are great to those whom embrace larger government. You see, Dems don't want to make anyone mad, especially Islamic terrorists, insane world dictators, bad guys that strap bombs on their kids or our guests at GITMO. It is a liberal thing, I guess. Kumbaya and all that.

But if none of this appeals to you, I suggest you hold your nose and vote for Juan McCain. That is, if he hires Mitt. You will at least get two people with the skill and experience necessary to keep you safe and keep you working. They will get government off your back, away from your children and hopefully out of your pocketbook.

I yearn for the day when this nation can put forth the best, the brightest and most dynamic individuals we have to lead us forward in the 21st century. That person may be male or female, black or white. But it must be someone who is an American first. Then everything else second.

Let's hope and pray this is the last election in America where 95 percent of the people have to vote based on their answer to the question: Whose presidency will be least painful?

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