With most exit polls predicting an unsurprising runaway win for Hillary Clinton on the democratic side of the aisle tonight; we may have to turn to alternative methods of getting a different kind of candidate elected. Every election year we hear people talking about writing in a political candidate which, most times, has been the equivalent of throwing your vote in the trash and walking away, content with “the principle of the whole thing”, or some goofballs writing in a cartoon character. But maybe the times are a’changin’ and this might be the year that we need to seriously consider a push for supporting a write-in candidate for the White House. To date, the most notable win by a write-in candidate is Senator. In 1954, Strom Thurmond became the first person to win a senate seat over campaigners listed on the ballot, by write-in vote. So, why not for President?
With the machinations of our political process becoming buzzwords in the media, one can’t help but wonder what effect Superdelegates might have on the outcome of the 2016 Presidential election. Superdelegates, a word that brings to mind a cape-wearing politician with superhuman powers, may be the swan song for Bernie Sanders. They are unpledged voters who are under no pressure or obligation to vote for the people. Instead, they can vote as they see fit, and can do so in a political climate where reality feels more like scenes from House of Cards or Scandal, and screams of dark, smokey back rooms where personal deals are made in the shadows and away from public scrutiny.
This is the makeup of the delegates for Super Tuesday; Alabama(Delegates: 53D, 50R), Alaska(Delegates: 0 D, 28R), Arkansas(Delegates: 32D, 40R), Colorado(Delegates: 66D, 0R), Georgia(Delegates: 102D, 76R), Massachusetts(Delegates: 91D, 42R), Minnesota(Delegates:77D, 38R), Oklahoma(Delegates: 38D, 43R), Tennessee(Delegates: 6D, 58R), Texas(Delegates: 222D, 155R), Vermont(Delegates: 16D, 16R), and Virginia(Delegates: 95D, 49R). In order to win the Democratic nomination, a candidate must win 2383 delegates. If the early exit poll analyses are correct, and we have little reason to believe they aren’t, Hillary Clinton has a commanding lead.
As we see more voters in some historically conservative states becoming more liberal, and more fears that there is too much money in the political process, the Electoral College seems like an antiquated method of doing business and way too much like business as usual. We may have to storm the Bastille and take the election into our own hands, literally. We have seen the crowds that Bernie Sanders has drawn to his speaking engagements.
Why not utilize the sheer will of the people to force the revolution we want to see happen? As people square off, trying to decide what they will do if Bernie doesn’t win the party nomination, they only seem to see two options; to vote for Hillary with gritted teeth or stay home and not vote at all. The problem is gathering enough momentum behind the process to actually mean something, and that means dealing with the apathy that seems to beset Progressives and Liberals on voting day.
If the status quo or the establishment refuses to work for the will of the people, the people have to force their hand and maybe we have reached a point in history where the write-in vote can move the political process out of those dark rooms and into the limelight.