Radio Address to the Nation on the Upcoming Elections
My fellow Americans:
After a vibrant and fractious and exciting year, we will at last be going to the polls on Tuesday and exercising our most important right: the right to choose our future, the right to vote. There's nothing more glorious than the blessing that is our God-given freedom to choose those who will lead us, and there's no sight more moving than a lone American walking to that voting booth, casting a ballot in secret, and thereby determining the destiny of this great country.
And make no mistake: The choice this year at the top of the ballot is crucial. Don't listen to the cynical pundits who tell you this election isn't about the issues. Oh, yes, it is. In fact, it's about more than the issues: It's about the direction this country's going to take over the next 4 years and beyond. It's about the kind of economy we want, the kind of defense we want, the kind of values we want.
The choice is yours. But, yes, my fellow Americans, there is a choice, a very, very important choice. A vote for Vice President George Bush is a vote for optimism, an expression of faith in the American experiment. It's an endorsement of what we've done these past 8 years, and of our heartfelt promise that tomorrow and the days to come will be brighter still.
No one knows better than a man who has sought the highest office in this land what an awesome responsibility it is to be the vessel of change, the selection of a people in control of their present and their future. It's truly humbling. And I'd like once again to thank all of you who placed your faith in me, and I'd like to tip my hat to those who supported others but took their responsibility as citizens of a democratic society seriously and with care. I have heard your voices, like those before me and those after me. I have heard your voices, and I hope I have justified your faith.
know the two men who wish to succeed me on Tuesday. You know, also, so many
others -- tens of thousands of candidates on State and local and school board
Hamilton, one of our Founding Fathers, said it best: ``No laws have any
validity or binding force without the consent and approbation of the people.''
Well, what we've learned in the course of human history is that dictators may
coerce, and tyrants may control, but the people who obey them do so only
because they are threatened with bodily harm to themselves or their families if
they do not. These societies are not just, and they're not good. And perhaps most telling, they do not work. They do not work
because the people have no voice. They have no say. Their elections are cynical
frauds, sick jokes. Did you know that in the most recent election in the
Stalinist nation of
Now, compare that kind of society with the democratic societies where the last two centuries have seen the expansion of opportunity and freedom, steady increases in standards of living, and a constant belief that things will get only better. And why? Because we who live in democracy are all our own masters, and we know that the future is ours to build and that the only limits upon us are those we place on ourselves.
can imagine how very moved I was last May to be in the
Lenin Hills at a podium before an audience of students at
So, my fellow Americans, on Tuesday, breathe in the intoxicating air of human freedom in every polling place and voting booth in this nation and reaffirm the words in the Declaration of Independence: ``All men are created equal.''
you. And until next week, God bless you, and God bless
Note: The President's address was recorded at in the Oval Office at the White House for broadcast at on November 5.