Monday, October 22, 2012

Presidential Election 2012

In fifteen days We the People of the United States will vote to elect our National Hood Ornament for the next four years. Today's blog post constitutes, I hope, my only direct political commentary about that upcoming election.

I don't care who you vote for. I don't care whether you vote based on an informed decision or an uninformed decision. But I would like to convince you to vote for the candidate whom you would most like to see win, regardless of whether that candidate hails from one of the two major political parties or else is a third-party candidate who has no chance of winning.

The core of my argument is that you have no good reason not to vote for a third-party candidate, should you feel inclined to do so. Don't be afraid of throwing your vote away. By voting for either Mr. Romney or President Obama, you're also throwing your vote away, so you may as well vote for the candidate you think best represents you.

As to why you'll be throwing your vote away regardless of whom you vote for, that's revealed by a moment's consideration: your vote will not be a tie-breaking vote. You won't tip a majority of the country's electoral college one way or the other. You won't be as Kevin Costner was in the movie Swing Vote. Your vote won't matter, at least not in the sense that voting for one candidate is worthwhile and voting for another candidate is a waste. These are probabilistic facts made certain if you reside in a non-swing state, as most Just Enough Craig readers do.

So vote for whom you like. And keep in mind that though We the People don't choose which two political parties sit atop the ballot and receive ample free coverage in the news, we do influence which issues the two major parties talk about and which they ignore and do nothing about. Despite all the bitter disagreement between the Republicans and the Democrats, those parties agree more than they disagree, and every vote that is thrown away on a third party gives more incentive to both the Republicans and Democrats to do something about those ignored issues in order to capture a third party's votes.

It's an election of percentage points. Don't be a captive constituent.


Josh Wilson said...

I agree with every word of this post. I'm not sure that I would have in the last presidential election cycle, but I definitely do now.

Grubby said...

Dang! Well put.

Craig M. Brandenburg said...

Josh— I suspected you might agree! Now the wager is whether we'll feel this way in 2016, too? Who knows!

Grubby— Have you taken the iSideWith quiz?