I was very excited today at the possibility of voting for the first time in about 4 years. What I failed to realize is that primaries don’t work like regular general elections. Now I knew that you had to be registered for the party of your candidate in order to vote. However, when I went to the polling station, I found out that it was only for democratic and republican voters. I am a libertarian and registered as such under independent. I have written a few posts on being libertarian which you can find here and here. Now if Rand Paul who was running on the republican ticket hadn’t dropped out, I may have been able to change my registration in time to vote for him. More on this later. My point of this post is to encourage New Yorker’s and people from other states yet to hold primaries to vote. So instead of voting, they ironically give me a sticker that says “I Voted”. HA HA HA..the irony is killing me. (Picture above)
I came across an article about changing your party registration on my favorite site FiveThirtyEight. The article discusses how hard it is change your party registration in New York. Here is the link. Obviously, this causes problems with voter turnouts because if you’re registered as an independent you cannot vote in the election. I was mistaken in thinking that I could still vote for Gary Johnson because I was registered. I think that the fact that third party candidates are not allowed in primaries is a bad thing. More than being mad about not actually voting because I don’t like any of the Democratic or Republican candidates. I am more angry with how the system is set up. Not being able to vote in a primary for a third party candidate really shuts down their chances at an legitimate election process.
Now I know that in the general election that I will be able to vote for whoever I want even myself. However, I think point here is that we need more choices in our elections. There is no logical way that in America, a melting pot of diversity that just two points of view can be applied to all 330 million Americans. I believe elections might be much different if we at least one other candidate. Elections are usually decided by two factors, electoral college and the popular vote. The more important one is the electoral college. I’ve explained how the electoral college works and why we should get rid of it before. I believe that a third candidate would allow for better debates. A third party candidate like Gary Johnson, for example would offer an alternate platform that could be enticing to both left and right. Libertarians advocate similar fiscal responsibility as Republicans and also social equality like Democrats. Just imagine all the best qualities of Hillary Clinton and lets say Ted Cruz in one candidate. Just minus the corruption, religious tinge and overall craziness.
I think the obvious connection with more candidates, primaries and party registrations is the actual voting. If you have made the same mistake or false assumption that I did then at least you had good intentions. I’ve written before that voting is an important civic duty and everyone should exercise it. Voting gives you a voice and a say in your government. The founding fathers wrote the constitution for the people not for the government to ignore and exploit. America was set up to avoid the tyranny of a monarch. I really think that people and especially young people should start taking voting seriously. I cannot stress it enough. The links to my other posts are here and I would encourage you to read them.
Even if you are like me and cannot vote in a primary then at least you have to register to vote in the general election. I can tell you from experience in voting in general elections that its a gratifying feeling to know that you help decide who will run this country. I have vote in two general elections. Obviously when I was 18, I voted for John McCain. Granted, I know your probably saying really!?!?! Yes Really, but you must understand as high school senior in a small up state New York town that being conservative was almost standard. Even today, my parents are conservative republicans. I understand now that typically hard working middle class people in rural areas usually are conservatives.The reason is simple, they would like to keep their money. However, the downside is socially things like gay people and transgender are not as accepted. Once I went to college and discover there as many different types of people I started to realize maybe republican wasn’t my party.
In 2012, I thought about voting for Mitt Romney but decided that his business campaign wasn’t really working for me. Instead I decided to pick an libertarian candidate, Gary Johnson. In that re-election year for Obama, Gary Johnson actually received 1 million votes. This is quite a milestone for a candidate whose party is suppressed by the mainstream media mostly and by the election laws. I say that mainstream media suppresses libertarians because most networks don’t cover the candidates with one exception. Fox News actually has one program that is libertarian. John Stossel is the host and the show’s namesake, Stossel.
So get out there and vote! Thanks for reading!