“If you agree with me on nine out of 12 issues, vote for me. If you agree with me on 12 out of 12 issues, see a psychiatrist.”

So said Ed Koch, former mayor of New York. Obviously a willingness to compromise is essential to get anything done. Former President Ronald Reagan knew this, and that’s why he was able to accomplish so much.

I have supported U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., for many years, and yes, there have been times when I disagreed with him. Nonetheless, I firmly believe he has demonstrated strong leadership in many areas, including vital support of our military and firmer action against the unrelenting threat from terrorists.

These radical elements, called Islamists, do not represent the many good people that live in the Islamic countries. During our career in the U.S. Foreign Service, my wife Donna and I had the honor and privilege of serving in several countries where the major religion was Islam.

We got to know many citizens and interacted with them. The majority admired America and were living their lives just as we do and held the same aspirations of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We must continue to support them.

Donna and I attended the recent Republican forum and listened closely to what the various candidates had to say.

They mean well, but it is our opinion that none of them has the experience or skill to effectively replace Graham, who also has seniority in the U.S. Senate. I do not agree with the way the House and Senate rules work, but they are the “law of the land” and when Graham is re-elected and Republicans win the U.S. Senate, he would likely become the chairman of an important military personnel committee.

Please vote for Graham on June 10.

Dick Smith