Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Election Day in Missouri

In Which I Voice My Political Opinions, At the Sure and Certain Risk of My Job

Oh, shame. Oh, woe. Today I did something I have never done in my life. On this Primary Election Day in Missouri, I went into my precinct and … I took a Republican ballot for the primary election. I have never before done that in my life. But in my town/county/district, there are very few Democrats running. In fact, most of the seats have only Republicans running; not one Democrat has filed for many of the offices. So it is pointless to vote in the Democratic primary. I live in a county that lacks a two-party system. If I am to keep the most insane, wacky Republicans from coming into office, I had to take a Republican primary ballot. GAWD! I feel so dirty!

And I am not alone. I was at a social event this weekend with a bunch of liberal and progressive friends. All of them were planning to take a Republican primary ballot … in hopes of keeping the wackiest of the wingnut Republicans from winning.

In years past, there’s one Democrat I would have wanted to support: Ike Skelton, Congressman of the 4th District. In years past, I would not simply have voted for him; I would have sent him money, because he will be in a fierce battle to retain his seat in Congress. But not this year. He has betrayed me. He voted against the health care act in Congress. And he not only voted against the repeal of “Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell”; he also made egregiously stupid comments that the repeal might force families to explain homosexuality to their children. [As he put it to reporters: “What do mommies and daddies say to their 7-year-old child?" In my view, that’s the very definition of a bigot.] As Rachel Maddow put it, Ike Skelton – the current Chairman of the Armed Services Committee – is literally afraid to talk about the fact that gay people exist. View her segment here:

In the past, I believed Ike Skelton was a principled, centrist Democrat. This year, I see him as an ignorant dinosaur who is a great friend of the Damn Republicans. So I could not contribute any money, nor could I vote for him. Frankly, I can’t see that people like me will lose anything if he loses to a Republican in November. There’s no difference between him and the Reactionary Republicans. Skelton has betrayed everything about which Democrats like me believe. So I couldn’t care less if he loses. It will not matter whether Skelton or a Tea Party Republican is in that seat. There is no difference between them. Whoever is his opponent, I know both of them are haters.

If you’re a political junkie, you know that Missouri also has one referendum on the ballot. It’s a referendum to nullify the national health care legislation. Missouri is the first state to put the issue on the ballot. The ballot language is convoluted. If we wanted to let Missourians benefit from the national health care legislation, we had to vote “no” to the wacky Missouri ballot language. I’m watching the voting results roll in, and something like 75% of Missourians are voting with the Tea Party wackos – seeking to nullify the federal legislation. But that’s not surprising. For it’s mostly Republicans voting in this primary election. The vote is skewed, as the state legislature intended. They knew that it would mostly be conservative Republicans voting today. So take this vote with a grain of salt. Democrats mostly stayed away … because the Democratic Party is essentially dead in Missouri.

You can watch the results roll in here.

All in all, this is a miserable evening for me. I realize the most wacky conservative Republicans will win, despite my support for the few thinking/moderate Republicans. And I’m sure stupid Missourians will vote for the feckless “nullification” of the national health care plan. I am living among stupid people in an ignorant wasteland. On nights like this, I despair of the state of our Republic – a republic founded on a fear of tyrannical democracy. Tyrannical “democracy” is now the rule.

I love and appreciate many of my friends here in Missouri, but I fear the majority of Missourians are about as intelligent and rational as this woman.


Blogger The Cardigan said...

I give you my condolences. Here in Idaho progressives have to do the same thing: vote in the Republican primary. Idaho is really a one-party state, so the Republican is pretty much guaranteed to win. Even our token Democrat in Congress is incredibly conservative.

Keep that chin up, and fight for the future of your state. Idaho's already slashed its education budget to nothing, and everything that isn't the roads department is looking at further cuts.

8/03/2010 10:35 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Thank you for understanding. Missouri, too, has become a one-party state. :(

8/03/2010 10:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If it's any consolation, I've done it before and will do it again. It feels like the only way to be heard in a one-party county/state and is precisely why I did not register as a Democrat.

8/03/2010 10:48 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Yes, it is some consolation. Thanks, 8th Day.

8/03/2010 11:06 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

Same in Wyoming -- we voted on the Rep ballot to keep the tea partiers out

8/03/2010 11:08 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Thanks, Ann. As the comments come in, I am feeling less slimy. Thank you!

Alas, watching the Missouri votes, I see that the Tea Party wackos are still winning in Missouri.

When the apolocalypse comes, I hope Missouri will be the first state to be immolated.

Gawd! I am such an outsider here. :(

8/03/2010 11:13 PM  
Blogger JCF said...

{{{Blue People in Wingnuttiest Red States}}}

8/03/2010 11:37 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Thank you, JCF. And let the people say ...

8/03/2010 11:43 PM  
Blogger Wormwood's Doxy said...

I feel your pain, honey. We're not quite in the same situation here in NC, but we have plenty of our own stupid reactionaries (e.g., Virginia Foxx from Winston-Salem).

I am so angry and disillusioned right now. I actually boycotted our state primary a few months ago--the first time in my life that I have CHOSEN not to vote. (There was only one race on the ballot, but still...)

I'll vote in November--but the Dems can forget about me going out and knocking on doors. If they couldn't support progressive causes with majorities in both houses and a Dem President (and don't even get me STARTED on his so-called "leadership!"), why should I believe that they care anything about my issues? Why should I give up my valuable time to try and elect people who are too cowardly to support a true public option for healthcare, ENDA, DADT, and an end to DOMA?

Oh...and then there are those pesky issues about finance reform, a two-front war, Guantanamo is still open, no prosecutions for the war criminals in the Bush Administration, expansion of the power of the Executive Office to do anything it damned well pleases under the guise of "national security," the pitiful response to the oil spill, etc. The list of what did not get done (and of the evils that were continued/expanded) is nearly endless...

I despair of the ignorance and gullibility of the American public. I guess the old adage "You get the government you deserve" is true--but some of us do NOT deserve this. I only wish I knew what to do about it...


8/04/2010 6:06 AM  
Blogger Kirkepiscatoid said...

The only times in my life I have ever taken a Republican ballot have been when my uncle was running for county clerk and he had an opponent in the primary--with disastrous results.

I mean, my God. It's a small town. Everyone who works the precinct knows me. They know I am a Democrat. They know my grandparents were Democratic committee men/women in the neighboring county for DECADES. So I walk in, and without having to say so, they give me a Democratic ballot.

So imagine the hilarity that ensued when I looked at my shoes and mumbled, "Uh...I need a Republican ballot." No one says anything, of course, b/c they can't electioneer. But there are like 4 pairs of eyes as big as saucers looking back at me. Finally, one will whisper to the others, "Remember, her uncle's XXXX."

Then one will grin and say, "Wow, we thought we might have to check your ID a little further. Like maybe you were a space alien or something."

And for God's sake, never accidentally spoil a ballot in small town Missouri. You would think you had just pooped on the floor. "SHE SPOILED THE BALLOT!" followed by "she spoiled the ballot" being murmured in hushed tones.

It is damn traumatic!

8/04/2010 12:13 PM  
Blogger Caminante said...

The one time I voted in an open primary as a Republican was when Fred Tuttle, a crusty Vermont dairy farmer, was running against a fabulously wealthy Republican who had only lived in Vermont two years.

The debate was a hoot. Tuttle to McMillan (I think that is his name): How many teats are there on a cow? How do you pronounce CALAIS? (Up here, like calus)... and so forth. When Tuttle won the primary, he then turned around and told everyone he would be voting for Patrick Leahy. This was the 1998 election.

8/04/2010 7:50 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

Thank you, Doxy, for articulating the rant that I stopped short of making. ... I'm with you. For instance, as I said, I could not bring myself to support Ike Skelton with his anti-healthcare, anti-gay agenda. I know that when November comes, I will have to vote for him against his even more odious Republican opponent. But I won't give him one dime, won't devote one minute toward campaigning on his behalf. He is an enemy toward my life ... just slightly less than his Republican opponent.

KirkE, your story cracked me up!! I can picture you there!

Oh, Caminante! We have had some analogous stories here. Idiots who don't even know the constitution or laws. Yuck!

8/04/2010 9:41 PM  
Blogger Lisa Fox said...

BTW, I was a bit nonplussed this morning to see on my SiteMeter that someone from the U.S. House of Reps spent significant time on my blog. One wonders ...

8/04/2010 9:42 PM  

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