An even less meaningful vote than usual?
Submitted by murph on 14 January 2008 - 12:59pm. politics
Michigan's got its Presidential primaries tomorrow, and, on the Democratic side, there really aren't many choices to vote for. Michigan hopped the line to third, citing the desire for a state of meaningful size and demographics to actually matter (Michigan would have more delegates than the appointed four first-primary states put together), though the cynical explanation is that prominent Michigan politicians thought they could help out Romney and Clinton with an early primary.
As a result, the DNC stated that Michigan delegates would not be seated at the national convention, and issued a boycott order of our primary; as a result, the only candidates on the Dem ballot are Clinton, Kucinich, and Gravel (and Dodd, who has already dropped out of the race); the others withdrew from the ballot (in order to minimize the meaningfulness of a Clinton victory), and none of the Dem candidates, save Kucinich, have appeared or campaigned in the state.
So, I'll admit, I would like the next President to be a Democrat, and I plan to vote in the primary, but I don't care for Clinton - nor for the stupid party power-games which a vote for Clinton is a proxy for. So, as I see it, I've got three choices tomorrow:
Maximin the Republican race: As discussed on MarkMaynard.com, the Daily Kos and some other sources are recommending that Michiganders use their votes to sow chaos in the Republican race, or to simply tilt things towards the least objectionable R, with votes for Romney.
Vote "Uncommitted" Democrat: The Edwards and Obama camps are recommending an "Uncommitted" vote. While write-in votes don't count, an Uncommitted vote does, and is essentially a "none-of-the-above-which-implies-I-like-Obama-or-Edwards" vote. The local Democratic Party faithful seem to favor this path.
Vote Kucinich: the only serious Dem candidate on the ballot besides Clinton, Kucinich has also broken the ban on Michigan campaigning - so I'd see a vote for him as a nice stick in the eye of the national Dems' power-gaming. There are also the popular environment-friendly, anti-war, and hot-First-Lady arguments for Kucinich, but, even more, I'm liking his Mayoral tenure in Cleveland. In 1978, Kucinich stood up to a cartel of banking and utility interests and refused to sell the municipal power utility. A 1996 report estimated that this decision saved Cleveland residents $195 million - and it also caused the banks to put out a fiscal hit on the City, calling their bonds in, and the mafia(!) to put out a hit on Kucinich personally.
So, personally, I think I'm going with choice three: vote for a candidate I actually like, and who has shown, by the simple act of showing up, that he cares about Michigan's vote more than the national party does.