11/02/2007 11:38 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Other Candidates Handing Hillary The Nomination

Let me take a shot at presidential politics ....

Candidates running for president, both Democrat and Republican, are obsessed with Hillary Clinton -- raising her profile as the sure front-runner to win the presidency in 2008.

This a total distraction from the core issues that are important to most Americans, such as:

-Ending the war in Iraq
-Preventing war with Iran
-Health care
-Social Security
-The Economy
-National Security
-The Energy Crisis
-Illegal Immigration
-Restoring our moral "high ground" in the world community

All that I hear from the Republicans are comparisons between their positions and the positions of Hillary Clinton. Excuse me, they also agree to carry on George W. Bush's war in Iraq.

The Democrats running for president are not much better. Tuesday night in Philadelphia I could not even focus on where all the candidates stood on the issues. Prior to the debate they all must have huddled up and agreed to gang up on Hillary to knock her down from front-runner status. Edwards and Obama went overboard in their attacks providing her with more opportunities to promote her views blotting out those of her opponents.

They looked like a group of guys up on a stage trying to bully a woman who took the heat, stood firm, and fought back.

This is all I have seen on the major news stations for the past two days. The media has been dominated by the fact that Hillary was beat up on by her male challengers -- reinforcing Hillary's comment about the "all boys club."

I wonder if any of them remember Rick Lazio when he took on Hillary for Senate back in 2000. He behaved the same way and it didn't work out to well for him.

This kind of image is what will rally people behind Hillary.

Do they understand that this type of behavior is helping to solidify Hillary as the Democratic nominee for president? The other candidates seem to be ensuring their own demise. They showed just how afraid they are of Hillary. Did they expect her to break down and cry? I hope not, because she did a good job keeping her composure.

Coming from me this means a lot. I am not a Hillary Clinton supporter by any stretch of the imagination. She has flip-flopped entirely too many times for me that I can't trust her.

I would be excited about having the first woman president, but she has been entirely too hawkish on Iraq, only to change her position when she announced her candidacy. To add insult to injury she voted for the Kyle-Lieberman non-binding sense of the Senate declaring Iran's revolutionary guard a terrorist organization.

Bush wants to attack Iran and this is what he will refer to as his justification for doing so. Bush knows that too many moderate Republicans will not go along with an attack on Iran so he can not go back to Congress for a full authorization. And the only Democratic presidential candidate to vote for it was Hillary.

I know the national polls indicate that Hillary is the front-runner. However, I only know a handful of people who are voting for her. Most of the liberal base are resistant to Hillary because for far too long she has been too supportive (directly and indirectly) of the war in Iraq. Others feel she lacks integrity and question her motives -- that comes from a lot of women I know.

At a time when George W. Bush enjoys a 26 percent approval rating. And the approval rating of Congress is even lower. We need to see leadership that will show us light at the end of the tunnel.

Candidates from both parties must stop their fixations on Hillary Clinton. And instead they need to turn their fixations on the issues facing us as Americans today. Then get to work on making us believe they are the best candidate for the job.

If any candidate wants my vote they first and foremost need to convince me that they will end the war in Iraq. In 2008 I will not vote for the lesser of two evils like I was forced to in 2004.

I will vote for whichever candidate is the closest to personifying "true patriotism."

My definition of true patriotism is fighting for the freedom of all Americans regardless of race, color, creed, religion, sexual orientation, political party affiliation, economic background, etc.

I fully understand that is a "tall order" in the modern political environment, but this is the basic standard that needs to be met by any candidate seeking my vote to represent this great nation.

John Bruhns
Iraq Veteran