Good morning fellow citizens, it’s Election Day and I don’t know about you, but I’m filled with crazed excitement. It’s beautiful outside, here, in New Jersey. The air is cool, brisk and the sun is shining brightly. I haven’t yet voted, but I will, even though I know my vote doesn’t count… dun dun dun dunnnn! Cue dramatic music here…
“I have ever considered the constitutional mode of election…as the most dangerous blot on our constitution, and one which some unlucky chance will someday hit.” -Thomas Jefferson to George Hay, after surviving the first contingent election. 1823. Ford, Paul Leicester (1892-1899). The Writings of Thomas Jefferson (FE). Vol 10, page 264. New York.
I know several people who are not voting this election cycle, because of one reason or another, and I say to them… Fuey on you! Just kidding! But seriously, I’m having a hard time concealing my displeasure. Please tell me, by refusing to participate in the process; albeit a broken, tainted and corrupted one, who do you think you are helping or hurting? Indifference is NOT an option at this day and time. There are serious issues at hand; like paying higher taxes, not having healthcare, going to war over a humpty number of reasons, starting a trade war with China and under educating our population. These are real threats to the way of life we’ve come to know as being American, so, why not take a stand for your country? Voting is your right!
“The present rule of voting for President…is so great a departure from the Republican principle of numerical equality…and is so pregnant also with a mischievous tendency in practice that an amendment of the Constitution on this point is justly called for by all its considerate and best friends.” -James Madison to George Hay. 1823. Writings 9:147—55 Kurland and Lerner (1987). The Founders’ Constitution. Volume 3, Article 2, Section 1, Clauses 2 and 3, Document 10.
Over a billion dollars in campaign money has been squandered away in vain trying to get you to the voting booth. Why hasn’t it worked? It’s because people overwhelmingly feel powerless and the Electoral College system has reduced us to the belief that that one vote doesn’t matter and sadly, it happens to be true. The actual vote total in a state has no relevance to its electoral votes. The number of electoral votes is set. The state casts its electoral votes even if only one person actually votes, which renders this system totally flawed.
“Can we forget for whom we are forming a government? Is it for men, or for the imaginary beings called States?” -James Wilson, author of U.S. Constitution. 30 June 1787. Madison, James (1 April 1987). Notes of Debates in the Federal Convention of 1787. W.W. Norton & Company.
Our system is clearly broken and no one has put forth any suggestions to improve it. This, I feel, is a missed opportunity and apparently, I’m not alone in this. Where do we go from here? I don’t have the answers, and yes, like you, I too am starting to feel disenchanted with the establishment, but that’s not going to stop me from excercising my right to making an educated choice. You better believe that I will be trudging to my voting station this afternoon to cast my ballot. I will sleep better at night knowing that I participated in this democracy of mine and that my vote counts towards the choices I make in my life…