I knew it when I made my decision early in the summer. I knew people would be mad. I knew some GOP folks would be disappointed and I knew some ‘expected better.’
People are mad as hell about us non-straight-ticket voters. We’re wasting votes, they won’t count, it’s a vote for Reid/Obama/Pelosi/Jimmy Carter/Hitler, it’s unprincipled, it’s wrong. In reality, I’ve never publicly stated who I’m voting for in which races and I’ve been rather critical of all the candidates…because no one is perfect. I’ve been honest with those that ask. But even the idea of questioning has put me on the chopping block with people I call friends.
There are folks who have stopped calling, texting, engaging. They feel they have to distance themselves from me, politically…at least “through the election cycle.” Because that’s what a lot of political friends are…surface level. Whether they’re angry, bitter, scared, I seem to have become a threat to their credibility. Seems like most people just don’t know what to do about me…and anyone else who isn’t cut from the 2014 cloth.
It’s like I left the farm, married outside the cult, sought refuge with the enemy, branded a scarlet letter…however you want to describe it. And I’m not alone. The laundry list of folks who aren’t voting straight ticket this year and have been shunned and outcasted by their fellow party pals is miles long.
For me, 2014 is the first major election cycle where I’ve interacted with people in this capacity and on this level. In 2010, I was just a baby envelope-licking volunteer and in 2012, I was still a ‘Jessica What’s-her-last-name?” I certainly didn’t vocalize my opinions as I do now.
To say that it’s frustrating to hear 60%, 70% and 80% friends are sufficient to be accepted by fellow conservatives but then see it fail in practicality is an understatement. What’s interesting is that I’ve had SEVERAL people ask me privately who I’m voting for in specific races, but only one of them has asked me why. And that person is 21 years old. I think that speaks volumes about what’s going on in our political environment right now. The why stopped mattering months ago. It’s war now and we’re out for blood.
Like I wrote in a previous article about the worst thing about people in politics, I can’t be angry with the people who don’t agree with me or the ones who feel I have abandoned the GOP in some races on the ballot. It’s not the first time for some other folks but it is for me, and politics certainly isn’t the end-all-be-all of life (amazing fact, isn’t it?!). But politics is personal – whether it be about candidates or issues, it’s painfully personal- and all about relationships. In the quiet, the shunned are sad about what this as all come to.
To be clear, this isn’t a ‘woe is me’ plea. I’m just fine and I’ll continue to be just fine. I’ve yet to write something I don’t stand behind and I’m not too damaged by the political process to not admit when I’m wrong. There are plenty of people ‘protest voting’ out of anger but what about those of us who genuinely feel convicted to do something different?
I think a lot of people assumed I had ‘toned it down’ after the Delvis Dutton campaign, and in a lot of ways I have, but if I took anything away from that experience, it’s to stay true to my principles and convictions. If that means that folks within the GOP don’t ever let us seasonal and rogue Republicans back into their rodeo ring, so be it. Conscience and principle is a sword I’m willing to fall on. If that means losing friends and influence, I’m okay with that too.
The reality is that whether this election ends in November or January, it will end. Then what happens? Do we hug it out? Or is the nail in the coffin bludgeoned by a sledgehammer prepared for a shallow grave of GOP used-to-be’s who will taint the cause because of that one time we fled the compound?
Welcome to reality. Unfortunately, no matter who one votes for today, the outcome will be the same. Who has the money exerts the power and who has the power divides up the money. There is hope and that is when we the people take back the nomination of our candidates by the “people’ of the party and take it away from the power brokers who pass out the money for campaigns. The members of the Republican Party in Georgia, not the general population must take back the nomination of the candidates. Voting for third party candidates only weakens the Republican Party in Georgia. Only by having a Republican Governor, House and Senate in Georgia can the people of Georgia demand performance. A split in government only creates finger pointing and nothing getting done without distasteful concessions. Get on board to change the rules for nominating candidates at the State Party level and watch what happens. Please start writing about us instead of me.
James, thanks for your words, but if I spoke for “we”, people would say I don’t speak for all.
The safest way to only acknowledge my own beliefs.
And much to your dismay, I will vote at least one third party vote.
Got it Jessica, when I was your age, I voted for Ross Perot and helped get Bill Clinton elected. We have a two party system in this country. End of story. Any third party vote that one casts only comes back to haunt that voter because the statement that the voter tried to make is soon forgotten and the very person that the voter most wanted not to get elected, gets elected. The problem is in how we as a Party of People with beliefs, nominate our candidates and who can “afford” to run. Believe it or not, the majority of votes are still bought because of the lack of participation by the average citizen in the election process. There are many ways to buy votes. When a US Congressman can go to the Atlanta Chamber and get over a Million dollars in campaign money and his nearest opponent only raises $32,000 and that Congressman spends all of that money on his campaign, something smells in that trash can. Do the math, divide how many votes that candidate receives into the money spent and one will know how much that candidate had to spend to buy a vote. A voter that doesn’t vote against a candidate is worth more than one who votes for the candidate. “I’m not asking for you to vote for me, just don’t vote against me”. Again, do the math. The number of people who voted for a candidate vs the reported money spent equals the cost per vote.
It really doesn’t matter how many times you say it, I’m not compromising on my beliefs.
I appreciate and respect your opinion, but you simply aren’t winning any hearts or changing any minds.
And a hint of advice, the way you’re trying to do so isn’t exactly conducive to doing so if I were an undecided voter. You have to respect people’s beliefs.
I admire your passion. I truly believe you care about your fellow human beings and our country. Seeing a problem is one thing, fixing it is another. Is any fix going to please everyone? Of course not. But if the fix pleases 50% plus 1. Then ones efforts are making progress. I have offered my suggestions and experiences. The fact that you are going to follow your beliefs and do something with your opinion makes a statement but are things really going to change because of that? The tire is flat and we are stuck. Are you going to vote yes that the tire is flat or are you going to proceed to change the tire? What do you want to be when you grow up, a thinker or a doer? The doers are remembered and the thinkers are forgotten.
I think I’ve been courteous and gracious of your discourse but this is a personal blog- not the Public Policy Foundation.
Different strokes for different folks.
Sorry Jessica, didn’t know I was being discourteous. i know that it is your personal blog but you asked for comments. If you believe that voting for a third party candidate is your contribution to fixing the problem, then who i am to say that you are wasting your time. But don’t you see that that is what the establishment wants you to do. Divide and conquer.
I always welcome comments. Always.
My point was that as a blogger, I am not expected to offer a solution every time. Sometimes I can just vent.
There are plenty of policy-based solutions but generally any blog that is “party based” lacks a real solution.
I liked what I heard from Swafford, Hunt not so much. I voted for Alan Keyes when I lived in MD and basked in the glow of knowing that once in my life I voted for someone I felt completely good about and was not just selecting the best of the available choices. It felt good and is a memory I cherish wondering if I will ever do it again. I hope you get a memory to cherish (though I don’t see anyone with Keyes credentials, intelligence or appeal).
I’ll be watching to see how you feel in a few years.
@James Camp stated “Get on board to change the rules for nominating candidates at the State Party level and watch what happens.”
The only way to “get onboard” is to change state law, as the entire nominating process in Georgia is defined by state OCGA law. That is, the legislature.
Neither the State GOP nor the State Democrat Party has any influence on the primary process. Stop arguing for that because it won’t change unless you/we elect different people to the legislature to specifically change Georgia LAW.
Ok, point taken, what do we do first besides throw mud and blame someone else? Change the state law or change the Party Rules. All one has to do is go to monthly Republican Party meetings and see how many people are there. No one is there because what’s the point. We only get one vote and who knows if that vote even gets counted. I say, change the way we nominate our candidates and people will get involved. The process can start at the county and city level and work it’s way up through the system. But the State Rules must be ammended to allow the Local County Republican Party to nominate and elect the Party Candidate to represent the Party on the ballot. That is true Grass Roots Politics. Noting will ever happen in the State Legislature until the State Party Rules are ammended. The process would allow Candidates at the local level to be nominated at the Prescient level and voted on by the County Party to run on the ticket. If someone does not get nominated by the “paying members of the Party” they can still qualify and run as an Independent. At any rate the candidate would be accountable to the members of his or her local party and not to the State Party and the money brokers like it is today. If you or anyone has a better idea, love to hear it. We all know what the problem is but what’s the fix.
“the State Rules must be amended to allow the Local County Republican Party to nominate and elect the Party Candidate to represent the Party on the ballot” Rubbish, that’s tantamount to handing over control of the voters choice to a potentially deadly political entity. I don’t expect everyone to agree on a candidate, but it is a citizen’s right to run for office and declare their political affiliation. Where do’s it say that a candidate has to have a party platform tattooed on their face and not allow any deviation? In the privacy of the voting booth you can elect to vote for a candidate OR NOT vote for a candidate, but to have a “local political party” nominate and elect the representative on the ballot, is rubbish.
I dare you to take a walk down the street where you live and ask the people living on your street who they voted for in the last election. You will be lucky to find one out of five who even voted much less even remember who they voted for, when they did vote. Obviously you have not attended any public forums where the candidates debated. I was at one tonight and there were candidates representing six counties in and around where I live. Senate and House Candidates talked about how they would change government and vote more money to education and free health care for everyone. Not to worry people where the money would be coming from because the Federal Government is printing it day and night and sending it to anyone who wants some. I counted twenty people there. Republicans and Democrats totaled twenty. If twenty were there and there are about 250,000 voters in those six counties, I am really impressed at the terrific interest in who is running for office by the voters. What a turn out of interested voters (ha ha) who are going to cast a vote and have never even shook the candidates hand. I have canvassed for candidates and asked people questions. I have had people tell me that they voted every election. I said do you remember who you voted for? The number one answer was “the first person on every selection”. Wow, I know that has to be the best way to select the person who is going to be passing laws that could determine the life or death of my child. Or if law enforcement will have the power to knock down my door and slam me to the ground because they went to the wrong house to arrest a child molester.
People or voters who are willing to know the candidates and demand that that candidate live up to the promises that they make must be the ones doing the selection. Otherwise our country is doomed to those who would only vote themselves a check or at least until the money runs out. Then my friend it will be anarchy. You think it is bad on the “Living Dead”. Just wait till the 50% of the people in our country stop getting their EBT card refilled and the disability checks stop coming in. WalMart, Kroger, Publix will be cleaned out in four hours. They will be kicking in your door in twenty four hours. But unfortunately by then it will be too late. Yes, two out of ten who bother to vote is truly the answer.
Good point Bill but in Fayette county we banded together and ousted the big government crony capitalism establishment. The we elected Marty Harbin who will go to Atlanta and fight for our principles. We can make a decided difference one election at a time moving to bigger change.
I only hope we can get more like Jessica into our gray haired group.
Bravo. Hold true to your principles. That is what I have wanted the Republicans to do and been so disappointed by their failure. That said I would like to know who in this election cycle is a Democrat that passes your principle test. Did I miss the post where you mentioned them. I would like to take another look.
I attended the Perdue/Nun – Deal/Carter debates/ralleys and was saddened by the exclusive exchange of soundbites and missing exchange of substance. I liked the a bit of what I heard of the Liberterians but their total platform is outside my principles. We seem to be stuck in the grip of big government politics and the only choice is which is worse and, for me, the Dems win for the worse hands down.
Now, I am also wondering if you are succumbing to the temptation as I fear Matt Walsh has, that is being more and more sensational to build and business rather than just engage your thoughts with the world. I hope not. But for now…thanks for sharing and provoking some interesting conversation.
I am not considering any democrat candidates, only L’s.
As for the building a business thing- absolutely not. It costs me money to maintain my blog and I am not compensated for sharing my thoughts. Anywhere.
I assure you that my thoughts and perspectives are much too personal for me to fake.
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