[EM] Lesser-of-2-evils voting

Bill Lewis Clark wclark at xoom.org
Mon Jan 26 21:00:03 PST 2004

Mike Ossipoff wrote:

> "It's better to vote for what you want and not get it
> than to vote for what you don't want and get it."

I haven't voted in a US presidential election ever, and haven't voted in a
presidential primary since 1992 -- because I basically agree with that
Eugene Debs quote (and want election system reform more than anything

I boycott national elections, in large part because low voter-turnout
scares the hell out of the two major political parties, and puts pressure
on them to reform the system.

(I still sometimes vote in local elections, because often my vote matters
enough to outweigh my qualms about participating in -- and therefore
sanctioning -- a system I don't believe in.)

> As I asked Bill, doesn't it seem a little odd that the "winnable" or
> "viable" or "serious" candidates are always the most dishones ones?

I view that as a consequence of party politics, more than anything else. 
When there's a party line to be toed, that can present a conflict with
one's own beliefs.  It's easier for independents or candidates from
smaller parties to be honest -- but it's also harder for them to win.

I agree with what George Washington and many of the other founders of this
country thought: political parties are an evil we would be better off

But I also believe in means to an end (sometimes.)  So, I'm thinking of
casting my first vote for president, as long as there's a serious
candidate with election system reform (of *any* variety) on the agenda.

-Bill Clark

Dennis Kucinich for President in 2004

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