Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Election Day 2012

I took an early lunch today to go out and vote. I hope that each of you managed to find the time to do the same. I was looking over historical voter turnout numbers and realized that, with a few exceptions, we've never had great voter turn out in this country. I know that a lot of people feel that their vote isn't worth a lot, but I disagree. I believe that every vote is important, even if it doesn't impact the outcome of the election.

There are many states in which there is no doubt which presidential candidate will get the electoral votes. My home state of Kentucky happens to be one of those states. I'm sure that many people see no reason to vote, since the outcome of the Kentucky election is already known. Personally, however, I see this situation has a great opportunity to support a 3rd party candidate. I am a big proponent of 3rd parties, and believe that we need to move beyond the two party political system, since it is clear that two parties are not able to adequately represent all citizens.

Why, you might ask, should someone vote for a 3rd party candidate when they have no chance of winning? My reason for voting 3rd party is simply to show that there are those of us who do support them. Until 3rd parties begin to pull in a large number of votes, the media and most Americans are not likely to take them seriously. I do not vote 3rd party because I think they can win this year. I vote 3rd party because I want them to have a real chance of winning in the future.

I'm not suggesting that everyone should vote for a 3rd party candidate. I'm sure that there are plenty of people for whom the Republican or Democratic party platform better matches his/her values than the platform of either 3rd party. If you consider a vote for either main candidate to be a vote for the lesser of two evils, however, I urge you to consider voting for a 3rd party candidate. In some situations a vote for a 3rd party may be the most powerful vote you can cast.

Clearly I should have written this post prior to the election. Unfortunately, however, I hadn't planned to comment on the election until today, and then it was too late. My comments, however, will be just as applicable in 2016 as they are today.

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