What a waste of time…

Irony has a way of running up to you and smacking you in the face.

I spent the vast majority of my day agonizing over my decision for either Clinton or Obama. In addition to the concerns listed in my previous post, I deliberated on the needs of the country versus the needs of Democratic Progressivism. Which does this country need more: a competent adminstrator or a compelling leader; a policy wonk who can fix the messes left behind by Bush, or an idealist who can change people’s minds?

As I finished my day and began the drive towards the polls, I realized I was really overthinking this whole thing, and placing way too much importance on my one vote. This is a primary, not the election, and my vote is but one out of a million votes that count collectively, not
individually. My vote would not decide the fate of this country! Removing myself of that burden made it easier to conclude that since I liked both candidates, and would be happy with either as the democratic nominee and as President, it would be pointless to belabour the issue
with myself. I should instead vote for the one who I preferred, who spoke to me on a more personal level: as a liberal American who beleives this country needs change and vision as well as ideas.

What cruel irony it is, that a month’s worth of research and soul-searching should come to naught! I was unable to cast my vote for Barack Obama because I am an “Unaffiliated” voter (a reality I never knew–I have always been a democrat and have always voted democrat, and assumed that I had registered as a democrat. I cannot remember why I did not). Oh, the dejection! I very nearly cried.

Irony, that bitch.

Advertisements

19 thoughts on “What a waste of time…

  1. Bummer Rachel! But Lesson learned? Every state has different party rules for caucus and primaries. You grew to political maturity in a state without a closed party. Here we do not have to “affiliate” to caucus for our candidates. Anyone can show up at a democratic state and caucus. As you now know, In your state, it’s a “closed” primary and you have declare a party when you register. The devil’s always in the details!

  2. HuH? Are you telling me that in the states you are registered one way or another and because of that you can’t vote for who you want?

    I don’t understand your political system at all.

  3. Its good you did the research. It will make the vote in the general election sweeter. You’ll know the good and bad of the candidate you will elect.

    Now, if we banded together and got the parties in Connecticut to change their standing on unaffiliates voting, maybe it’ll help in 4 years. Its a state party issue, not all states disallow unaffiliates the primary votes.

  4. Its good you did the research. It will make the vote in the general election sweeter. You’ll know the good and bad of the candidate you will elect.

    Now, if we banded together and got the parties in Connecticut to change their standing on unaffiliates voting, maybe it’ll help in 4 years. Its a state party issue, not all states disallow unaffiliates the primary votes.

  5. Total poppycock! I can’t believe you can’t just vote for whoever you want, regardless of your “officially listed” political aprty. And people wonder why so many get disillusioned with the system and don’t bother to vote at all..

  6. A little clarification: Whether it’s a caucus or a primary, we are NOT actually electing the candidate just yet. Rather, we elect delegates to the conventions and bind them to a specific candidate. At some point in the convention after the first round of voting when they must vote as they were bound, they are then free to vote for whomever they wish. If this happens the conventions can get pretty interesting. Last exciting convention was the Dem’s–Chicago, 1968. I remember it well and it was ugly. I do hope there will not be deju vu all over again. . .

  7. Really!?

    I am a registered democrat but I’m renouncing the party to become an independent. I encourage others in the big-party duopoly to do the same.

  8. This won’t affect your ability to vote in November, will it? Because that’s when we really need you.

    By the way, consider yourself tagged!

  9. I had no idea you had to register with a party…. I don’t get it. Do you really mean you can’t change your vote at the last minute??

  10. I had no idea you had to register with a party…. I don’t get it. Do you really mean you can’t change your vote at the last minute??

  11. Puss: it clarified only a little bit.

    Jen: I’ve been nothing but thoughtful lately.

    Em, It never occured to me that I hadn’t declared my party when I registered. I guess I didn’t see the need to at the time.

    Jazz. Only in closed parties, which is a state-by-state affair. Some states (like Em’s) are open and undeclared voters can vote in either party’s nominating event. In a closed party state, voters have to be a member of a party in order to vote for candidtes of that party.

    Woozie: Humph!

    Pool: In a way, the research did, but its mostly pointless now, since I would never vote republican. Once the democratic nominee is chosen, whoever it is will be my choice for President. which is why the nominating vote is important to me–it is my only real vote for my prefered Presidental candidate.

    Bob: I was very disappointed.

    Angel: I think people are more disillusioned by the politicians themselves than by the system.

    Em: I kinda hope the national convention will be exciting. Not violent, of course, but some contentious vote-switching would be thrilling.

    BigMomma; my sympathies!

    M@: I actually like being a democrat.

    CotW: Not at all! I AM a registered voter, just not registered to a party. And great tag, thanks!

    Jazz: it IS complicated, LOL.

    Dawn: Only for the nominating primaries/caucuses. and in all cases, in all elections, once the ballot is cast, it is set in stone. However, people are free to change their party registration at anytime before an election day.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s