I should confess right off that I voted for George W. Bush in 2000 because, in part, he was a man of faith. He called himself a “compassionate conservative,” which was how I liked to think of myself. After a couple of years, I realized the man I had voted for wasn’t very compassionate or conservative, at least not fiscally. By the end of his second term, I was ready for someone totally different. Yet, even though my politics had shifted, I still wanted to vote for someone that shared my values.
In 2007, I heard a rumor that Barack Obama was going to visit the Bethel AME Church in my hometown of Nashville, Tennessee. He was here to campaign with Harold Ford, who was running for the US Senate. While then-Senator Obama wasn’t yet running for President, he was obviously considering it. Like a lot of people, I’d heard Senator Obama’s speech at the 2004 Democratic Convention and was intrigued enough that I drove across town to see him in person. (more…)