As the election draws closer, and the tension surrounding this crucial decision builds, I feel I must talk to any of the few visitors to this site who are still undecided about their vote, or who are basing their vote not on the issues at hand but on party affiliation.

It is a crucial time in the history of this country. The USA's international reputation is in tatters. As the costs of the war are added to the woes of the credit crisis and the strength of the economy plummets, many Americans face immediate financial worries, and as the price of oil spirals, this gas guzzling nation is forced to confront its addiction and dependence on the oil producing nations of the middle east.

And while there are arguments for and against both candidates, one is clearly superior. Barack Obama has the potential to take the mess we are in right now, and turn it around.

I would like to publicly endorse Barack Obama for the position of the next president of the United States.

There are many reasons behind this decision, and rather than reiterate what has been said by many others, I wish to substantiate my position based on a few criteria:

Many of Obama's Speeches indicate Passion and Thought on the Serious Issues

It is not often that a presidential candidate gives a speech that can stand on its own during a campaign. Most of the time, public speaking is merely a front to rally support for policies, or the candidate. And yet during this campaign I have heard at least two speeches by Obama that have demonstrated that he is educated and erudite on the issues of our time.

Please watch some these videos and hear from the man himself:

Obama's Policies are Reasonable and Respectable

One of the benchmarks by which I consider the policies is how they relate to those of the current President. The Bush Administration has been responsible for horrendous acts, such as the torture and unlawful imprisonment of captives at Guantanamo Bay, allowing intelligence agents to place illegal wiretaps on American's phones, and generally trampling over the constitutional principles which once made America a country loved by the world, whose laws were held as the gold standard. Bush's policies have taken us into a situation where we are loathed by the rest of the world, and our economy is collapsing.

It is therefore surprising to note that John 'Maverick' McCain has voted with Bush up to 95% of the time.

While I do not agree with all of Obama's policies, I feel that he has laid out a strategy that gives America a good chance of regaining it's position among the worlds great countries. By basing his campaign around change, it is clear that he is committed to addressing the errors that have been made by the previous administration.

Throughout the Campaign, Obama has always taken the Honourable Position

It has been a long campaign for Obama, and one filled with smears and falsehoods. When racial slurs have been thrown at him, and his experience has been called into question, he has acted with dignity and grace - the traits befitting of a leader, and the traits which the stereotypes of Americans tend to lack. One of the key jobs facing the next president of the US will be to recapture the respect of the world. Obama has the character that this requires.

While I consider Scotland to be my home country, as a citizen and resident of the US I have used the terms 'we' and 'our' as a reflection of my respect for this country.