Catch a candidate by the toe.
If he hollers, his name is Howard Dean.
But seriously, I’d like to point out one glaring problem with the primaries right now, encountered, today and tonight especially, in New Hampshire – something that may in fact point to a bigger issue among the greater voting public. We all know, and have heard it time and time again, that the New Hampshire primary is hugely important because about 40% of the Granite State’s electorate is independent, able to vote in either party’s primary. The truly alarming thing, though, is not the openness of this state in particular, but the spontaneous and arbitrary method with which many voters (especially those so undecided) tend to mark their ballots. Late Tuesday, a CNN report found that eighteen percent of NH Republicans and 15 percent of NH Democrats said they picked their candidate at, quite literally, the last second. On top of that, it’s patently obvious that Joe and Mary Ordinary of the independent electorate tend to weigh superficial evidence quite heavily when choosing a candidate, forgoing actual policy analysis and offering buzz-word-filled reasoning like, “I think [Candidate A] is a true patriot and is ready to lead our nation,” or, “In my opinion, [Candidate B] can really go out and accomplish all this talk about change.” Vague character judgment should play some role in the decision-making process, and it inevitable does, but it shouldn’t be the only variable considered. The haphazard manner in which so many political choices are made is evidence of widespread laziness and a complete misunderstanding of the importance of voting. If you’re not sure who you support, don’t vote. Neither should you vote because you want to “exercise a democratic right” or because making the trek down to Town Hall gives you the impression of having influence. Vote because Candidate A or B is offering a comprehensive political argument with which you agree – one that can’t necessarily be squeezed onto a bumper sticker or fit into a 30-sec advertisement.
Change, Experience, Courage, Strength, 9/11, Experience, Experience, Change again, Something About Leadership.
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe, That’s how the primary will most certainly go.