1) Expanded Access to Health Care
"the fact that tens of millions of human beings cannot afford access to this often excellent private healthcare, even in a basic form, remains, to my mind, a scandal. That there are two nations in this country - one with the security of healthcare and one with no security at all - remains, to my mind, a moral disgrace."2) Torture
"Torture is also a non-negotiable issue for me. It is simply unacceptable. It is the negation of the West's entire founding principles. Any candidate of any party who supports it rules himself out for me on that ground alone. Romney will bring it back. He will make America a torturing nation again. He would employ the former war criminals of the dark years of Bush-Cheney and legitimize them still further. He would reinforce the idea, propagated by Cheney, that torture is a "no-brainer", giving comfort to every vicious dictator on the planet to do the same."3) War with Iran
"I cannot reconcile a pre-emptive war against a country that only has the technical ability to make a nuclear bomb, but has not weaponized it or threatened its use, with any reading of just war theory."As Sullivan says, these issues have an importance that goes far beyond tax rates on capital gains and what have you. Until we have a Republican candidate who turns his back on the Bush-Cheney regime of torture and unlimited, unending warfare, they will never get my vote. Until they accept --no, proclaim -- that there are higher goals for our society than letting the rich keep their money, they will never get my vote. These are not partisan issues in any simple sense. Across much of American history it has been the conservatives who opposed unnecessary war, and who favored creating a caring society over economic growth. All of Sullivan's points would be endorsed by the Pope and his conservative Catholic supporters. How Ayn Randism at home and unending violence abroad came to be mainstays of American conservatism remains something of a mystery to me. But as long as they are, I will be voting Democratic.
If you want the US to do good in the world, rather than evil, you have only one possible choice: Obama.