Super Tuesday Tech Special: Republican Edition

Click to viewTomorrow is Super Tuesday, meaning that from among the three Republican candidates (four if you count good ol' Ron Paul), a Republican presidential candidate should emerge. Since we're most interested in how the candidates stand on technology matters, we've presented them below. Now, we're not going to pretend that this batch is super up to speed on all things tech. But for readers who will vote Republican, you should know which candidate has your best tech interest in mind. And if that's too boring for you, if each Republican candidate were a gadget, which one would he be? We made the calls—you tell us if we're right.

Super Tuesday Tech Special: Republican Edition

John McCain

The 100-Word Version:

McCain thinks the market should determine the fate of the net, so government-mandated "neutrality" would be too much of an intervention. He also voted against renewable energy. He voted in favor of federal funding to get more tech in classrooms, yet he wants to be hands off in closing the digital divide. This is also the same man who is self-proclaimed as computer illiterate, and almost went broke before primaries even began.

Bonus Bits: McCain expects to be in Iraq for over 100 years. No matter what opinion you have on the war, just think about all the crazy gadgets they'll be fighting with then!

If McCain were a gadget, he'd be: a Motorola StarTAC cellphone. Once relevant and desired, both are woefully underpowered now, and backed by a company in financial turmoil.

Mitt Romney

The 100-Word Version:

Romney suspiciously lacks a position on many prevalent tech issues; he offers no statements on net neutrality and vague, blanket statements about subsidized tech programs that might help the poor. He did propose $20 billion for the automotive industry to research alternative energy sources. But he's more concerned with becoming energy independent from other countries, as opposed to finding a replacement for oil. Given his lifelong commitment to capitalism, Romney probably won't take any big risks in the name of technology.

Bonus Bits: Romney probably wishes we weren't living in the YouTube era, so the public wouldn't be exposed to his grasp on cultural relevance.

If Romney were a gadget, he'd be: a Lenovo ThinkPad. Romney and the ThinkPad both are meant for the business sector, eschewing romanticism for a bottom-line mentality.

Mike Huckabee

The 100-Word Version:

Huckabee is the only candidate from the GOP who's in favor of net neutrality, picking up major points from us (in spite of ourselves). He also supports reducing CO2 emissions through renewable energy programs, though I wouldn't exactly call him a techie. Huckabee is mostly concerned with renewable energy so that CO2 emissions don't muck up his hunting grounds. As far as funding tech programs to bridge the Digital Divide, he lacks any stated position.

Bonus Bits: Huckabee has Chuck Norris, the ultimate internet meme, in his corner.

If Huckabee were a gadget, he'd be: a Big Mouth Billy Bass. Not only does Huckabee come off as a low-tech kind of guy who loves his nature, but he has a certain low-brow appeal to him. The Singing Fish embodies a similar characteristic.

Ron Paul

The 100-Word Version:

Paul, our Libertarian in wolf's clothing, is against net neutrality and thinks the FCC should stay out of 700 MHz spectrum auction. He also voted against funding for tech education, reducing greenhouse gases and increasing automotive fuel economy. Sure, he is against federal requirements for search engines to keep detailed search logs. But still, DO NOT WANT.

Bonus Bits: The users of Digg have taken a liking to Paul. Any story that mentions his name is almost guaranteed to hit the front page.

If Paul were a gadget, he'd be: the BugLabs BugBASE. Bug Labs is about letting people do whatever the hell they feel like with the gadget. Ron Paul thinks American citizens should be able to do whatever the hell they feel like with the country. Kindred spirits, they are.

And the winner is...: Huckabee. This may sound absolutely mad, but if I had to pick a GOP candidate based on his tech policies, it would be Mike Huckabee. McCain and Romney could potentially have better tech platforms, but neither has the balls to show their hand. Therefore, mostly by default, Huckabee wins.



Related Reading:

Mike Huckabee

Chuck Norris Endorsement of Mike Huckabee

Mike Huckabee on the Issues

NY Times Magazine: "The Huckabee Factor"

Mitt Romney:

Mitt on YouTube: Who Let The Dogs Out?

Mitt on the Issues

Tech Crunch interviews Mitt

John McCain:

John McCain @ D5 Conference

John McCain On The Issues

John McCain interview with CNET

Ron Paul:

Digg Nation Hearts Ron

Ron Paul On The Issues

CNET Interviews Ron Paul

Special thanks to TechCrunch and CNet.