Exercising my Rights

Today was a day that I’ve been asked about for at least two weeks – the day that we went to the polls and voted for our preferences in the Presidential Elections. As it turns out, we actually had a bit of a role to play in the Democratic contest because it was still going on, but the Republican contest is pretty much sorted out by now.

The rules for voting in a primary election (which really is the preliminary election, but they’re called primaries here for some reason) are, for my state, that you can vote within only one party. For example, if you vote in the Democratic column for President, you can’t vote in the Republican column for anything else – of course, that was an issue that we didn’t have to worry about.

As it turned out, the Presidential election was the only item on the ballot – and we still had the full slate of candidates. In my county, according to the clerk’s tally, at least one person voted for every single candidate on the list, including outliers such as Dennis Kuchinich, Mike Gravel, Tom Tancredo, Duncan Hunter, and even Bill Richardson. Interestingly, I think Ron Paul actually got the third highest number of votes behind McCain and Huckleberry Huckabee. There were even votes for the Undirected Delegate, and some write-in votes. Surely they’re voting for Tommy Thompson…

Anyway, I’m not going to say who I voted for, but I did cross over the line for the second primary in a row – last time it was because there was no competition on my side, but this year, I voted for the person I’d rather see in office out of the slate that was presented to vote for.

I’m not sure how it is to vote in other countries or even other states, but here it’s fairly informal – you just state your name, verify your address and you’re given your ballot. Unfortunately, attempts to require presentation of photo ID to vote have been reneged continually at the legislature level. Considering the current climate, I’m not sure that will ever go through, but it would really be nice if we would have it. Would it be more cumbersome to vote? Sure, but consider that right now, someone could come in, claim to be me, and vote, it makes it really bizarre.

Though considering the size of the community that I vote in, that would be very extremely unlikely. 🙂

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