The reasons for voting have been expressed by thousands of others. The cases have been made. So I won’t be adding much, except to say this is an extremely important election. And I’m someone who believes in the right to intelligently abstain. Not to abstain because you don’t care, but because your conscience cannot support either, or any, of the candidates.
That said, we are at a crossroads. The Republican Party is not what it used to be, and where it will take this country is decidedly farther right, to a harsher reality than any incarnation of a Republican Party before it. I don’t understand people who think that “the economy” (in many cases meaning their own financial self-interest) is a reason to allow a party into power that has its sights set on a permanent conservative majority on the Supreme Court; that intends to finish off what’s left of the middle class (I have my own issues about that, as well: it seems the only class that matters anymore is “the middle class”, while the poor and working poor have been completely forgotten); a party that will prevent any representation of LGBT people and our lives in the national public square. A party that, at its very heart, considers women to be subject to the rule of men. A party that is owned by an unholy union of cynical religious extremists and cynical billionaires. And yet nearly half of the American electorate seems poised to elect the standard bearer for this party because of something as vague as “the economy.” Note, too, how ready the party of personal responsibility is to blame their woes on Barack Obama. It may come as a shock to many of them to discover that Mitt Romney won’t be hiring them, either. Presidents do not find people jobs.
I’m a lifelong Democrat. I keep hoping the Republican Party comes to its senses and someday nominates someone like Jon Huntsman, who I think would have really been a threat, but whose moderation and non-gay-hating ways make him wholly unsuited to be a modern Republican nominee for president. But that’s a long post, for another day.
Tuesday we will have launch. Get out. Vote. Make it count.