Saturday, April 24, 2010

Throwing Your Vote Away?

Catholics often feel pressured to vote Republican in elections, instead of for Third Parties, because the Third Party "has no chance" of winning. And so a vote for them is said to be "throwing your vote away," equivalent to giving a one vote advantage to the pro-abortion candidate that otherwise could have been "canceled out" by a vote for the Republicans.

And, I admit, I've followed this logic in the past, in all the elections I've voted in so far. And when there is a close race where a pro-life Republican has a real chance of beating the pro-abortion Democrat, I'd have to say it is sound logic.

But then there are cases like the 2008 presidential election. It became quite apparent days or even weeks in advance...that John McCain had no chance of winning. And at that point...why is voting for him any less "throwing your vote away" than for a Third Party candidate?

A viable Third Party is never going to get off the ground if no one ever votes for them out of fear of "throwing their vote away" or of implicitly giving pro-abortion candidates the advantage.

As I said, in close races where the pro-life candidate really does have a chance, I think you're bound to vote for him. But I see two ways that Third Parties could get a leg-up.

The first is to vote for them in races which aren't close. As a vote of no-confidence in the Republicans. If it is clear that the Republicans won't win anyway (as it was in this past presidential election) then feel free to vote for a Third Party candidate.

The second is that the bishops should probably stop being so cowardly and apolitical and throw their support behind an official "Catholic Party" or something like (maybe we'd need a name a bit more appealing to the Protestant Right as well) that and "encourage" Catholics to vote for it, at least in elections where "vote splitting" won't be a problem; and it wouldn't necessarily be. As it is not only former Republican voters I could imagine joining such a platform, but also former Democratic voters, the blue-collar crowd who like their economic policies but are uncomfortable with their liberal social stances. There is a large group in the middle there that really have much more in common with each other than with the political orthodoxy of either of their own parties.


Anonymous said...


McCain is pro-abortion, so no difference between the candidates there.

Obama supported the war, Patriot Act, Obama's expanding the executive orders instead of undoing Bush's executive orders, I don't really see too much of a difference between a liberal and a neocon at this point. An interventionist foreign policy (also known as "nation building") has always been a historically LIBERAL platform.

Anonymous said...

... oh, by the way, I'd like to add you walk out of the voting booth with a conscience if you vote for a third party candidate who's views are closer to us trads.

It doesn't matter if you choose the lesser of two evils, because the lesser of two evils is still AN EVIL.

So what if you're lesser of two evils candidate wins? You'll still regret helping get him in once he starts signing away on radical police state, totalitarian legislation.

Voted Ron Paul in the Primary, then Chuck Baldwin (Constitutionalist) in the General.

Anonymous said...

... OriamendiMexico's the screen name by the way.

sortacatholic said...

When did the Republican Party ever really care about abortion? It's just a bunny they pull from their hat at the last minute to keep practicing Catholics enslaved to them. Ronald Reagan voted to legalize abortion in California in 1969 only to hazily oppose it when running for president. Prescott Bush was a long time contributor to Planned Parenthood. The GOP heroes all have blood on their hands. Why do the prelates and the people fall for this every election?

The GOP blasted Obamacare not out of moral concerns. It was all about fiscal discipline, healthco money, and the rolling dislike of government aid programs beginning with the Great Society.

I'm glad I'm in Canada now. I can't vote here, so it's one less thing to work the ulcer over.