Every presidential election is a big deal. Some are bigger than others—this is one of them.
I’m not super excited about the candidates but I haven’t been for the last few elections. I miss that—it’s nice to be really excited about a candidate.
But that’s not my greatest concern or what makes this election a bigger deal than others. I’m concerned about the heart of our nation, it’s values, and the angst.
And I’m concerned that so many are threatening to not vote. So I want to tell you how I’m choosing to vote in hopes of adding some helpful food for thought.
I don’t tell people who to vote for and it’s not important for me to talk about who I’m voting for. I do, however, think how we all choose a candidate is an interesting and important discussion. Here is my process for your consideration.
The First Choice To Be Made
Option #1: Vote.
Option #2: Not vote.
For me, the latter isn’t even an option. Part of my responsibility as a husband, dad, and a good neighbor is to do whatever I can to make the context for raising my family and that of my community the best it can be.
The most important thing I can do every day is to pray for our current leaders. The next most important thing I can do—and, for me, must do—is be a part of the selection of future leaders.
If I don’t vote—and vote thoughtfully—I’ve neglected my responsibility to my family and community. If I don’t vote, I have no right to complain or even express my opinion. Voting is ultimately the best way to voice my opinion. And if I don’t like the options, perhaps I should get more involved in the process for next time.
If you want to watch something initially entertaining but then seriously scary, search YouTube for Watter’s World. I refuse to be one of the growing many who are uninformed yet gripe and complain and wax ineloquently—and ultimately aren’t responsibly engaged in the process.
So, having chosen to exercise my right and responsibility to vote, I am now faced with the candidate options. I may not like the options but I have to play the hand that’s dealt to me.
Selecting A Candidate
My next choice is between the names on the ticket or someone I choose to write in. For me, this is the trickiest choice.
As a pragmatist, I don’t consider my personal favorite first. I consider the two who are the most likely to win. Others may be more in line with my values and I may choose to throw my weight into their campaign process. But when it comes down to casting my ballot on Election Day this coming November, I’m going to vote for the one I consider the best between the two most electable.
You might feel differently and feel better about voting purely according to principle—and I respect that. For me, I don’t feel that makes any difference in the real world at the ballot box. If I want to flex my principles the most, the time for that is in between elections.
Once I determine the two candidates most likely to be elected on election day—and granted, there could be three in a close race but I don’t remember a time when that’s been a reality—I cast my vote based on a few things and in this order:
- My confidence in his/her commitment to uphold our Constitution and the laws of the land.
- My confidence in his/her commitment to protecting our citizens and our constitutional rights.
- My confidence in his/her commitment to policies that will create and nurture constitutional freedoms, opportunity for prosperity for all, and self-reliance.
- My confidence in his/her commitment to values I hold dear.
You may agree or disagree with my process. I’m not really trying to persuade you to vote by my process of choosing. I’d like to believe it would generate some healthy consideration and/or conversation.
What I do hope is that you choose to vote. Exercise due diligence in sorting through the spin and talking heads to get the information you need to cast your vote for a better future for our country, communities, businesses, families, and neighbors.
Question: What are the most important things you consider when casting your vote? Share your answer in the comments below.