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A day to be Proud


yabadabapal

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Today is the day I filled out my ballot for the presidential elections. I am so proud to live in a country where we have this right, this privilege, this freedom to vote for our representatives on so many levels. At the same time I hope for myself and others that we realize voting is just the icing on the cake.

The real work that needs to be done in this country will be done by all of us participating in any degree and on any level to keep the playing field of this great democracy honest, and accountable to the people it serves. Danny Glover the actor in Lethal Weapon put it this way. "take care of your Gifts." America is a gift. Lets take good care of her and each other.

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russell_bynum

Amen. Especially the part about accountability.

 

If you elect someone on a promise to do something and they don't make good on that promise...kick their asses out at the next election. IMO, many of the problems that we're facing right now (economic, social, and political) are due to a lack of accountability.

 

There are plenty of people around the world who can't vote. There are lots who risk violence and even death if they vote.

 

That our biggest inconvenience in voting is that we might have to stand in line for a few minutes while our Starbucks gets cold really says how blessed we are.

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That our biggest inconvenience in voting is that we might have to stand in line for a few minutes while our Starbucks gets cold really says how blessed we are.

It's not a matter of a few minutes. My wife stood in line for two hours. The cash register lady where I eat lunch stood in line for four hours. Some people have stood in line for eight hours. Many of the people I saw standing in line can't afford Starbucks coffee.

 

In my entire life, I have never seen anything like the early voting turnout in Georgia. Nearly 2 million people have voted already; the total vote in 2004 was only just over 3.3 million. This election is history in the making.

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Nearly 2 million people have voted already; the total vote in 2004 was only just over 3.3 million. This election is history in the making.

 

And that is so sad!

 

I view voting as more than just a privilege. It's a duty. And if you fail to exercise this privilege/duty then shut the heck up. No sideline naysaying. Get in the game!!!

 

Just ask Jamie about my view on voting! She learned real fast that if she did not become an informed voter early on in our courting, we were not to be. Not saying vote to vote either. Informed vote is key.

 

PLEASE!!! Vote.

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Joe Frickin' Friday
That our biggest inconvenience in voting is that we might have to stand in line for a few minutes while our Starbucks gets cold really says how blessed we are.

 

Probably going to be more than a few minutes tomorrow... :grin:

 

I'm getting there early (6:45 AM, opens at 7) & hoping for the best...

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Amen. Especially the part about accountability.

 

If you elect someone on a promise to do something and they don't make good on that promise...kick their asses out at the next election. IMO, many of the problems that we're facing right now (economic, social, and political) are due to a lack of accountability.

 

There are plenty of people around the world who can't vote. There are lots who risk violence and even death if they vote.

 

That our biggest inconvenience in voting is that we might have to stand in line for a few minutes while our Starbucks gets cold really says how blessed we are.

 

Right On, oh, I mean + 1.

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Nearly 2 million people have voted already; the total vote in 2004 was only just over 3.3 million. This election is history in the making.

 

And that is so sad!

 

 

Yes, it's sad, but 3.3 million just can't be the correct number. (?)

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We're holding our breath this side of The Pond ........

 

Too true, with the impact the outcome has on our countries, we should get a vote too :grin:

 

Andy

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In Illinois we vote early and often. :grin:

 

Oh wait a minute, that's only true in Chicago. (ducking icon here)

 

Seriously, I voted last week. No lines. No waiting.

 

It is 5:51 AM local time here. I bet the early results from the east coast are in and someone is making a prediction on the election already.

 

Vote! :thumbsup:

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In Illinois we vote early and often. :grin:

 

Oh wait a minute, that's only true in Chicago. (ducking icon here)

 

Seriously, I voted last week. No lines. No waiting.

 

It is 5:51 AM local time here. I bet the early results from the east coast are in and someone is making a prediction on the election already.

 

Vote! :thumbsup:

 

I thought I was making a joke, but here it is:

 

First election results are in at 5:54 AM on election day.

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I got to the polls at 6:20 this morning and was the second in line. By the time the doors opened there was a long line (long considering how rural my polling place is). I was however the first person to vote at my poll. I passed another poll on my way to work and the parking lot was packed solid. Looks like a big turnout.

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What are you supposed to do if neither candidate meets your needs?
Vote for the one that is closer to your needs, the right thing to do - or don't vote, the wrong thing to do.

Also I think it might be not a question of meeting your needs but meeting your principles.

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What are you supposed to do if neither candidate meets your needs?

 

Stand for office.

 

Andy

 

Andy, I know that seems logical, but I wouldn't be a viable candidate. As many here can attest, I'm not presidential.

 

What I'm really asking is what should people, who don't have a choice, do in an election like this? Should we simply hold our noses and vote for "the lesser of two evils;" vote "present" and not select anyone; write in a candidate who has no chance of winning; or not vote at all? It's a vexing question for me.

 

I've participated in every election I've been eligible for since 1982 with the exception of the 1990 congressional elections due to being deployed in Desert Storm - a true case of being disenfranchised. But this election just doesn’t work for me. I simply do not have any political connection to either guy.

 

I feel that going through the motions of voting, just for the sake of doing it, is disingenuous and thoughtless.

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Joe Frickin' Friday
What are you supposed to do if neither candidate meets your needs?

 

Stand for office.

 

Or vote for one of the others; there were half a dozen candidates on my ballot.

 

Or vote for none of them, and focus on local candidates and propositions.

 

Got in line at 6:45 this morning, line was already 100 feet out the door of the place, and rapidly grew another 100 feet behind me before the polls opened at 7. Took another 1:15 before I actually got to fill in my ballot. Wonder what it's going to be like tonight? I've heard predictions that, despite getting in line before the polling places close, some folks can expect to be voting after midnight. :eek:

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Nearly 2 million people have voted already; the total vote in 2004 was only just over 3.3 million. This election is history in the making.

 

And that is so sad!

 

I view voting as more than just a privilege. It's a duty. And if you fail to exercise this privilege/duty then shut the heck up. No sideline naysaying. Get in the game!!!

 

Just ask Jamie about my view on voting! She learned real fast that if she did not become an informed voter early on in our courting, we were not to be. Not saying vote to vote either. Informed vote is key.

 

PLEASE!!! Vote.

 

Phil,

I try to be a reasonably informed voter and I plan to vote today. Having said that I often do not vote on races/amendnents on which my information or knowledge of is lacking.. It seems grossly irresponsible to me to make an ignorant vote. Actually in a perfect world I don't think ignorant people should be allowed to vote. I'm not suggesting we try to accomplish that because we don't live in a perfect world and any attempt to legislate that would have negative results but it seems nuts to me that my vote on an issue that I know nothing about counts just much as another's informed vote. I think you hit the target when you said "informed vote". :thumbsup:

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I think that perhaps you have to look at the wider picture. From my limited understanding of US politics, the flavour of President affects the direction of the legislature, to a greater or lesser effect dependant on the flavour of the Senate.

I would decide based on what general direction I think the candidate will go, so yes, the lesser of two evils.

 

I get faced with a similar dilemma here most elections. Where I live, my chosen candidate for Parliament often has no realistic chance of being elected - I live in a "safe" seat for one of the parties. I do go and vote for my preferred choice because it is important to do so. On occasion though, none of the candidates - or their parties - offer a package I can sign up to in full - so I have to go for the nearest and then lobby them to swing more my way.

 

There are times when I feel a 'none of the above' option would be welcome. In the UK, the Official Monster Raving Loony Party often serves that purpose.

 

Andy

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What I'm really asking is what should people, who don't have a choice, do in an election like this? Should we simply hold our noses and vote for "the lesser of two evils;" vote "present" and not select anyone; write in a candidate who has no chance of winning; or not vote at all? It's a vexing question for me.

 

Start reading Gene Sharp so that you'll be ready for a peaceful overthrow. He's the man.

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Lets_Play_Two
What are you supposed to do if neither candidate meets your needs?

 

Make sure your state and local people do (including Congress and Senate). In the end they have more impact on your life any way!!!

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I went this morning - the wait in line was close to intolerable, and I almost said forget it....

Between the time I walked in, and was able to vote, it was probably well over 30 seconds. Sheesh.

 

:D

 

 

 

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As much as I love the democratic process, the stench of this campaign from both sides leaves a bad taste in my mouth. This election will go to the man with the most money. It's sad that this is where we're going as a nation. Too much time spent on too little. I don't think either candidate is the best pick for president. I'll vote but with reservations. The media really has the power and their view seems to be what we view on the idiot box. Celebrities just add to the smell of politics.

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Nearly 2 million people have voted already; the total vote in 2004 was only just over 3.3 million. This election is history in the making.

 

And that is so sad!

 

 

Yes, it's sad, but 3.3 million just can't be the correct number. (?)

 

It was closer to 120 million in 2004.

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Nearly 2 million people have voted already; the total vote in 2004 was only just over 3.3 million. This election is history in the making.

 

 

 

I think he was referring to the number of votes cast in Ga.

I passed my polling place this morning on the way in at 0630 and the line was at least 200 yards long!!!! No matter what side of the ballot you check, we all can agree that it's about freaking time that people are getting out and voting. Phil, I whole heartedly agree with you as it every citizen's (that's eligible) duty to vote. Too many of our countrymen have paid the ultimate price so that we can.

 

As a side note, I am relieved that it's finally over and now the winner needs to follow through with their promises. I for one will be watching VERY closely.

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Nearly 2 million people have voted already; the total vote in 2004 was only just over 3.3 million. This election is history in the making.

 

And that is so sad!

 

I view voting as more than just a privilege. It's a duty. And if you fail to exercise this privilege/duty then shut the heck up. No sideline naysaying. Get in the game!!!

 

Just ask Jamie about my view on voting! She learned real fast that if she did not become an informed voter early on in our courting, we were not to be. Not saying vote to vote either. Informed vote is key.

 

PLEASE!!! Vote.

 

Well put. I read the hopelessly ignorrant statements from supporters on both sides sometimes and shake my head. I alos hear the misleading statements made by both candtidates and shake my head. Sometimes I think that some one issue voters are actually voting the wrong way because of misinformation. But I at least commend their effort to vote.

 

I also appreciate that my wife has an opinion and also votes. Fortunately, we tend to agree on most issues.

 

I'm lucky enough to live somewhere that has very small voting districts, so there aren't any lines. I drove by at 7:30AM and there weren't any lines outside and i know thre's only room inside for 8 or 10 people. I saw 1 person walking in. They also close the polls really late in Iowa. I wonder if there will be capacity issues in some areas. Take the average of 3 minute per voter then over a 14 hour day, it can only handle 280 voters. Multiply that by the number of machines or booths available and you have the available maximum and instanataneous capacity for that location assuming that the bottleneck isn't the check-in table or ancillary equipment. I wonder if some areas need to be setting up some auxillary booths with the back-up paper ballots just to get everyone through.

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What are you supposed to do if neither candidate meets your needs?

 

By default then, I figure just examine their proposed tax policies and decide who's benefits you the most directly (do you make more of less than about $250k AGI? or your business profits exceed about the same amount) or... just vote based on social issues.

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Phil,

I try to be a reasonably informed voter and I plan to vote today. Having said that I often do not vote on races/amendnents on which my information or knowledge of is lacking.. It seems grossly irresponsible to me to make an ignorant vote. Actually in a perfect world I don't think ignorant people should be allowed to vote. I'm not suggesting we try to accomplish that because we don't live in a perfect world and any attempt to legislate that would have negative results but it seems nuts to me that my vote on an issue that I know nothing about counts just much as another's informed vote. I think you hit the target when you said "informed vote". :thumbsup:

 

Completely agree Billy. There were a two local official issues that I was unable to become savvy enough on to make an informed vote on. School board officials. I do expect those who voted to be informed in making their choices. I left those ballot boxes blank on my ballot.

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CoarsegoldKid
That our biggest inconvenience in voting is that we might have to stand in line for a few minutes while our Starbucks gets cold really says how blessed we are.

It's not a matter of a few minutes. My wife stood in line for two hours. The cash register lady where I eat lunch stood in line for four hours. Some people have stood in line for eight hours. Many of the people I saw standing in line can't afford Starbucks coffee.

 

My wife and I spent 5 hours while driving in the car discussing the ballot on a recent road trip. We spend 2 minutes filling out our ballot sipping on hot coffee we brewed at home. How good is that.

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What are you supposed to do if neither candidate meets your needs?

 

Stand for office.

 

Andy

 

Andy, I know that seems logical, but I wouldn't be a viable candidate. As many here can attest, I'm not presidential.

 

What I'm really asking is what should people, who don't have a choice, do in an election like this? Should we simply hold our noses and vote for "the lesser of two evils;" vote "present" and not select anyone; write in a candidate who has no chance of winning; or not vote at all? It's a vexing question for me.

 

I've participated in every election I've been eligible for since 1982 with the exception of the 1990 congressional elections due to being deployed in Desert Storm - a true case of being disenfranchised. But this election just doesn’t work for me. I simply do not have any political connection to either guy.

 

I feel that going through the motions of voting, just for the sake of doing it, is disingenuous and thoughtless.

 

Steve,

 

I'm sure as a former, or maybe current, I don't know, member of our military you have to be aware that many would credit you with preserving our freedom. I would argue that choosing ones leaders and lawgivers is perhaps the most fundamental aspect of that freedom that one can imagine. This right to vote is what you, and generations before you, really going back to something like 1300 a.d. in England, have fought for and worked for. For a military man to abstain is a repudiation of your life's work and must speak of a great despair. So, I would argue that you must make a choice and vote.

 

So how to go about this when neither candidate appeals? First of all I don't look much at campaign positions or promises. Congress will get into the act on these and nothing is going to look very much like what it started out as.

 

So I look at the following:

 

Who will they appoint to the courts?

Who will they surround themselves with in government?

To what extent can they work with others?

How will they shape our foreign policy?

Who do they owe for their win if elected and what bones will they throw them (who have they pandered to?)?

 

In the end, so far, I have with one third party exception many years ago, voted more against one set of these than for another.

 

I view a third party vote in today's climate as a vote for the major candidate most different from the third party candidate, and therefore against my interests. If I thought a given third party candidate had even half a chance, and I was interested in that candidate, then I would vote for them.

 

Essentially, in this election anything other than a vote for one of the two main parties is the same as an abstention, or worse actually goes against your interests.

 

Pick one of the two as the lessor of evils and vote, please.

 

Jan

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CoarsegoldKid
What are you supposed to do if neither candidate meets your needs?

Vote for hanging Chad. Pick one of the third party guys. Eneay meanie minie moe!

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Joe Frickin' Friday

A gentle reminder to folks:

 

A non-partisan discussion about voting in general is welcome, but partisan political discussions go against forum rules and should be taken elsewhere. Thanks!

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Ironic, but that (School Superintendent) is exactly what I've been campaigning for over the past several months.

(Not me, in support of a candidate.)

Working around my regular job, 30 hours of door to door (over 600 houses), roadside waving, etc. has given me a chance to participate in the process and that is what really separates us from many other countries.

I can choose to become involved, or not, and then to whatever extent I desire in so far as time.

Money contributions are limited by law, but time is not.

So I early voted 2 weeks ago, got up at 4 a.m. this morning to be at a precinct an hour early to put up signs and then campaign.

Went to work where I'm allowing the students to participate by question, computer, watching talking heads on TV, and discussion groups.

I'll campaign at another precinct from 1:30 until 7, or possibly move to another area then await the official returns.

In many countries this would not be possible and I am certainly appreciative of the opportunity to do so.

 

I think voting should be a requirement to get the Individual Deduction on your Tax Return. :lurk:

Candidates have always been lacking in quality, but sometimes cream rises...

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I actually found this election to be kinda scary. Everytime a charge was made against Obama being linked with terrorists or socialist or communists or Muslims or ...my fear antennea went up. "Uh oh, am I going to have to look over my shoulder come election day for some whacked out sniper or angry anti-Obama -- and by extension, anti-black male voter, who is looking to take out his anger on someone?" To me, this election came dangerously close to creating a sense of national hysteria that could easily have resulted in violence. I still feel the jury is not out on this matter, especially if Obama wins. I will be greatly saddened, but not at all surprised, if I start seeing all manner of race based violence flaring up around the country.

 

I agree, every US citizen has an obligation to vote and to participate in our government. But I do pray that we manage to keep a lid on the level of dirt that gets slung around. If we're not careful, one of these elections could result in some serious social disorders, rioting, and violence be it based upon race, religion, income, education, political leaning (left, right, capitalist, socialist, etc) or whatever.

 

Politics and religion are highly flammable! Handle with extreme care.

 

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Phil,

I try to be a reasonably informed voter and I plan to vote today. Having said that I often do not vote on races/amendnents on which my information or knowledge of is lacking.. It seems grossly irresponsible to me to make an ignorant vote. Actually in a perfect world I don't think ignorant people should be allowed to vote. I'm not suggesting we try to accomplish that because we don't live in a perfect world and any attempt to legislate that would have negative results but it seems nuts to me that my vote on an issue that I know nothing about counts just much as another's informed vote. I think you hit the target when you said "informed vote". :thumbsup:

 

Completely agree Billy. There were a two local official issues that I was unable to become savvy enough on to make an informed vote on. School board officials. I do expect those who voted to be informed in making their choices. I left those ballot boxes blank on my ballot.

 

That's amazing, I also left two school board boxes blank for the same reason. Voted on everything else. 45 minutes. Some disorganization, but everyone was really good about it.

 

Thanks to those volunteers working the polls today! However it goes, however competent they may or may not be, they take the entire day, plus training time, to make this work. Grass roots in action!

 

Jan

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So I look at the following:

 

Who will they appoint to the courts?

Who will they surround themselves with in government?

To what extent can they work with others?

How will they shape our foreign policy?

Who do they owe for their win if elected and what bones will they throw them (who have they pandered to?)?

 

I love it! Reason in the midst of insanity! No, what I mean is that I admire the application of logic and reason to a process that too often, too quickly, gels into mad, irrational behavior as people line up and choose side as though we're in a war of some sort. And of course, the candidates would have us beleive that the stakes are the same as in a war to ensure our undivided loyalty.

 

But if voters approached this process with this kind of reason, the campaigning process would get cleaned up real fast as the candidates could no longer appeal to our base emotional side.

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Lets_Play_Two

 

Phil,

I try to be a reasonably informed voter and I plan to vote today. Having said that I often do not vote on races/amendnents on which my information or knowledge of is lacking.. It seems grossly irresponsible to me to make an ignorant vote. Actually in a perfect world I don't think ignorant people should be allowed to vote. I'm not suggesting we try to accomplish that because we don't live in a perfect world and any attempt to legislate that would have negative results but it seems nuts to me that my vote on an issue that I know nothing about counts just much as another's informed vote. I think you hit the target when you said "informed vote". :thumbsup:

 

Completely agree Billy. There were a two local official issues that I was unable to become savvy enough on to make an informed vote on. School board officials. I do expect those who voted to be informed in making their choices. I left those ballot boxes blank on my ballot.

 

Just wondering....how many of the 140 million people who will vote in this election actually base that vote on an informed decision making process?

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I think the record turnout is in part because we actually have two viable candidates this time. This is the first election in a long time where (some) people have had to actually pay attention to the process...

 

Each candidate has something to offer, yet neither one is perfect. Even walking into the polls ths morning, I had some doubt about my own choice - so quite frankly I'll be (moderately) satisfied whatever the outcome. (Not like the elections over the last twenty or so years, where there was pretty much no way for us to win no matter WHO was elected...)

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This is the first election in a long time where (some) people have had to actually pay attention to the process...

Yes, and to their credit it seems as though voters are accepting less 'mom and apple pie' imagery from the candidates and demanding more specifics about precisely what they would or would not do differently.

 

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For a military man to abstain is a repudiation of your life's work and must speak of a great despair. So, I would argue that you must make a choice and vote.

 

This line of argument always irritates me.

 

Voting is a right, not an obligation. Being forced to make a choice in the face of lousy choices is, in itself, a violation of our right to vote, and it goes against the heart of what the right is about. We make statements in our votes, and we make statements when we don't vote. Sometimes, the appropriate statement may very well be that there is enough rot that it's just not right to support the system in its current state. An apathetic vote is a tacit approval to the various forces on the society that what they're serving up is just fine.

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This is the first election in a long time where (some) people have had to actually pay attention to the process...

Yes, and to their credit it seems as though voters are accepting less 'mom and apple pie' imagery from the candidates and demanding more specifics about precisely what they would or would not do differently.

Like it's going to matter after today. Neither candidate will be able to fulfill promises made on the stump. It's all theater and the best actor will win. The next campaign starts tomorrow and it starts with devising a strategy to make people forget about the promises made yesterday.

 

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Like it's going to matter after today. Neither candidate will be able to fulfill promises made on the stump. It's all theater and the best actor will win. The next campaign starts tomorrow and it starts with devising a strategy to make people forget about the promises made yesterday.

Well don't sugar coat it... :grin:

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Nearly 2 million people have voted already; the total vote in 2004 was only just over 3.3 million. This election is history in the making.

 

And that is so sad!

 

 

Yes, it's sad, but 3.3 million just can't be the correct number. (?)

 

It was closer to 120 million in 2004.

 

 

2004:

 

Voting-age population: 221,256,931

 

Voter registration: 174,800,000

 

Voter turnout: 122,294,978

 

Turnout of voting-age population: 55.3 percent

 

Source

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What are you supposed to do if neither candidate meets your needs?

 

Stand for office.

 

Andy

 

Andy, I know that seems logical, but I wouldn't be a viable candidate. As many here can attest, I'm not presidential.

 

 

 

Steve,

 

You would get my vote! Of course, I'm a wacko. :grin:

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Having voted now in 11 presidential elections, I'm more convinced that trying to choose a candidate based on philosophical, sociological tenets or one's school of economics is a fool's game. Primarily because candidates run from their platform planks as soon as they're elected.

 

In a recent debate amongst friends, I offered that I would vote for whomever was willing to pay the most for my vote. Using health insurance as an example, I believe McCain's plan to tax insurance premium payments is a sound move; however, Obama promises to prevent insurance companies from denying coverage due to pre-existing conditions.

 

My wife is a Type 1 diabetic and virtually uninsurable, privately. Should I have voted economic theory or pocketbook? Voting to disadvantage oneself when the majority is voting to advantage themselves is a recipe for extinction.

 

Shakers were noble, principled people, but there ain't many of 'em around these days.

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Steve,

 

You would get my vote! Of course, I'm a wacko. :grin:

 

Marty, I'll only run if you agree to be co-president. I'm not sure how well we would do as leaders, but I'm sure we'd be in the papers a lot. :grin:

 

I appreciate everyone's urging me to vote. It is something I have given a lot of thought about since the primaries. But, I can't talk myself around the fundemental lack of choice I perceive in this particular election.

 

Greg has it right about voting being a right, not an obligation. Choosing not to vote is still a choice. I have the right to choose, and I am doing so.

 

Though I appreciate Twisties comments, I didn't fight in a war to to pick the lesser of two evils (or is it the evil of two lessors?). If that's the best we can do, then we're already beyond repair.

 

Nope, I'm done with voting against people. It's like riding with the brake always engaged. What's the purpose? A slower demise? A more gradual erosion of the foundations of our nation? No thanks. From now on, I vote for people, not against them. If better candidates won't step forward, then I'll leave it to others to elect the lessor man.

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Dave McReynolds
In a recent debate amongst friends, I offered that I would vote for whomever was willing to pay the most for my vote. Using health insurance as an example, I believe McCain's plan to tax insurance premium payments is a sound move; however, Obama promises to prevent insurance companies from denying coverage due to pre-existing conditions.

 

My wife is a Type 1 diabetic and virtually uninsurable, privately. Should I have voted economic theory or pocketbook? Voting to disadvantage oneself when the majority is voting to advantage themselves is a recipe for extinction.

 

Shakers were noble, principled people, but there ain't many of 'em around these days.

 

I don't agree that preventing insurance companies from denying coverage due to pre-existing conditions is just a pocketbook issue. I think it's an example of one of the shortcomings of the capitalist economic system. I don't believe individual insurance companies acting in their own self-interest would ever decide to eliminate preexisting conditions from being a consideration for coverage.

 

A bit of regulation, eliminating considerations of preexisting conditions for all companies, allows private insurance companies to continue to compete on a level playing field, since they would all face the same constraint. From my perspective, it allows private insurance companies to remain a part of the game, as the only other alternative I see is a single payer government system, since I believe the current system is broken and can't be fixed, short of government intervention.

 

I have good insurance, as does my family, so my position is not based on self-interest, just basic fairness.

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