Wednesday, November 5, 2008

So yesterday at SCL there was a post about pitting boys against girls in giving contest. On the comments several people talked about how in those contests their church would let the cash count against the other team, like voting against the team, while coins counted for your team.

This got me to thinking about how things would look if we were allowed to vote against a candidate. I know a lot of people didn't vote for a candidate as much as they voted against a candidate. A lot of my friends voted for McCain not because they think he is the best choice but rather because they think Obama is the worst choice. What if their votes could have been cast as "not Obama."

I don't think this election would have gone to McCain by any stretch because plenty of people that voted for Obama would have happily voted "not McCain" instead. The part I think might have been interesting is how this would shape the lead up to the election. See, if all the ads tell me not to vote for Obama or McCain, then I could vote against Obama or McCain and literally cancel a vote for the person. If a lot of people do this then suddenly 3rd party candidate start getting closer to winning. This means that the major candidates either have to start telling us not to vote for these other candidates, which makes them have more publicity and potentially increases votes for them and also splits the voters against the major opponents, or the ads will have to start telling me why I should vote for a given candidate.

Either way it would be interesting to watch. Some particularly nasty and close races in the "battle ground states" might actually result in the major candidates having negative votes resulting in some 3rd party candidate winning those electoral votes with only a few thousand votes for them.

I don't think enough votes would end up going to any third party to cause more than one or two states to support the third party, but seeing that happen will drastically change how politicians court votes the next time. I, for one, would love to see that whole process change and letting the Green Party win one or two states would be worth it.

I will be posting on Refuge later today, this just popped into my head as I was getting ready this morning.


Pam said...

Seriously the best election post I have read yet- I'm liking that idea!

Nick the Geek said...


Thanks for the feedback. I'm willing to try almost anything if it stops the mudslinging.

Ryan B said...

Haha. Interesting idea. I wonder how it would pan out. Definitely a lot more strategy. New bill idea? I think so. I'm glad it's all finally over though. Except for the whole Prop 8 thing. I can't believe it's still going on.

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