The "Free Vote" Movement: Is now the time?
What is the Free Vote Movement? It is a political movement to help a 3rd party ascend to national prominence by urging voters who live in pure Red or pure Blue states to vote for a 3rd party candidate, since their vote doesn’t really matter in the general election. Is this the right time for you to consider voting for Paul, Barr, Nader or McKinney to help build a third political party? Premise: The Duopoly must be overthrown. The wonderful thing is, many people believe this. Cynthia McKinney believes it. Ron Paul believes it. Ralph Nader believes it. Bob Barr believes it, and millions of voters believe it. We have Blue States and Red States, and then we have the Purple, or "battleground states". It has been common wisdom for dozens of years that presidential elections are fought, and won or lost, in the battleground states. Florida and Ohio are the leading examples, but there are a few more: New Mexico, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, and possibly Virginia. But there aren't many. The candidates schedule very few campaign events in Texas or Massachusetts, for obvious reasons. The fact that comes to our aid is the fact that there are so few battleground states. Most Americans live in states where it is already known to a virtual certainty that the electoral vote of their states will go for Obama (e.g. MD, MA) or McCain (TX, TN). In those states, the citizens have a "Free Vote". The question is, “Do You Have a Free Vote”? For example, are you a Democrat in a hard-Blue state like NY? If so, then your vote is not going to tip the balance, and therefore you can vote for a 3rd party candidate to help build the Libertarian or Green Party. Do you live in Texas? Then voting for Obama is probably a losing proposition, unless you are just trying to dent McCain’s lead. A vote for the Green Party candidate might make sense if you are an environmentalist. The concept of a Free Vote should not be equated with "throwing away your vote" if you vote for someone other than the sure winner in your state. Also, you will not be hurting the chances of whichever of the two main candidates you prefer, if you, and a dozen of your friends and neighbors, or maybe even 20,000 fellow citizens, use your vote to express dissatisfaction with the Duopoly. Instead, it could help bolster a viable 3rd party. It should be doable, building each electoral cycle until some genuine Third Party really emerges. It will take time, but the effort must start in earnest sometime. The question is; is this the right time, or does Barack Obama need every single vote he can muster to win convincingly over John McCain?
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John R. Moffett PhD, is a Managing Editor at OpEdNews.com, and is a research neuroscientist in the Washington, DC area. Dr. Moffett has published numerous scientific articles on the nervous and immune systems. Dr. Moffett's main area of research (
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