Make Your Progressive Vote Count for President
President Romney ?
Initiating signers of the following proposal include Daniel Ellsberg, Cornel West, Frances Fox Piven, Barbara Ehrenreich, Marjorie Cohn, Jim Hightower, Jeff Cohen and Norman Solomon.
Defeat Romney, without illusions about Obama
Please tell friends -- no matter what state they live in -- about this proposal for strategic voting, so that progressives can have the most impact with their presidential vote.
While RootsAction activists have consistently challenged Obama policies (on civil liberties, war and bloated military spending, environment, potential cuts to Social Security and Medicare, to name a few), we know that the policies of a Romney/Ryan administration would be worse on many issues and better on none. Consider Romney’s recent vow to “change course” toward even more war-mongering in the Middle East. Or their profound differences on abortion rights and Supreme Court picks.
We also know that whether Obama or Romney wins on November 6th will be decided in a dozen states known as “swing” or “battleground” states because they’re so close they could go either way. Those states now include Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin.
But due to our 18th century system of presidential elections, your vote in nearly 40 non-swing states (e.g. West Coast, most of Northeast, deep South) will not be decisive because one side or the other will easily win those states. Progressives can take strategic advantage of this archaic voting system that’s winner-take-all in each state.
So please sign this pledge to promote strategic voting: in swing states, we’ll urge progressives to vote against Romney/Ryan by voting for Obama/Biden (despite our vital policy critiques) -- and we’ll urge progressives in non-swing states to seriously consider voting for unabashed peace and justice candidates.
Noam Chomsky and other respected progressive leaders have supported this voting strategy for years. Chomsky commented this fall: “Between the two choices that are presented, there is I think some significant differences. If I were a person in a swing state, I’d vote against Romney/Ryan, which means voting for Obama because there is no other choice. I happen to be in a non-swing state, so I can either not vote or -- as I probably will -- vote for [Green Party candidate] Jill Stein.”
RootsAction founding endorser and peace activist Daniel Ellsberg emphatically supports strategic voting. He lives in an overwhelmingly Democratic state and plans to vote for a peace and justice candidate. Of such candidates, Ellsberg says: “I agree with everything they say -- except when they say ‘vote for me’ in a swing state.”
In the nearly 40 non-swing states where our vote has no impact on Obama vs. Romney, voters can wisely send a message of protest to Obama and the Democratic Party leadership -- over policies like militarism, Wall Street coziness, abuse of civil liberties, expansion of nukes, fracking and drilling -- by voting for a genuinely progressive candidate such as Jill Stein of the Green Party.
I join with thousands of progressives around the country by pledging: YES, I will spread the word in support of strategic voting.