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Write-in Better Than No Vote

Write-in Better Than No Vote image
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Agenda Publications
Letter to the Editor
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Jeff Alson's 'To Vote or Not to Vote: A Citizen's Guide to Electoral Choices," in the March issue of AGENDA, addressed an important issue that is rarely discussed in the press. I disagree, however, with Alson's recommendation that people forego voting altogether if they cannot support any of the candidates on the ballot. A better idea is to mark your primary ballot "uncommitted." The presence of uncommitted delegates encourages more discussion of the issues during the party platform debates, especially when no candidate has collected a majority of del├ęgate votes before the convention. Better still, voters can write in the names of eligible candidates they would prefer to be nominated. Write-in votes get tabulated and of ten getreported in the paper. National Public Radio actually read theentire list of dozens of candidates receiving write-in votes in the New Hampshire primary. A write-in vote makes a political statement; staying home on primary day just counts as one more vote for political apathy.