Stephen Rodrick, a former New Republic reporter-researcher, is a contributing editor at New York magazine.

I entered my Brooklyn voting booth this morning uncertain who would get my vote.

Let me explain. My father was a Navy pilot who attended the Naval Academy not long after John McCain. I grew up in Navy towns where you did not see your dad for six months at a time, you went to sleep wondering if he was safe, and you comforted your buddies when their fathers did not come back at all. When I was 13, my father did not come back; he was killed in a plane crash off the USS Kitty Hawk.

There are few things I know with certainty that my father would have done if he had lived. One would have been to vote for John McCain. As his only son, that seemed the least I could do for him.

But it wasn't that simple ...

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