Deciding how to vote.
I am often asked, with so many candidates and issues how do I make sense of who to vote for in the upcoming elections. What may be obvious for some is not always clear cut and obvious for others. I would like to share with you a simple formula that I use in praying through and deciding who to support.
As a Christian how I see the world, what I think about rights, justice and equity and the value of human life and personal dignity are informed by my understanding of the Bible and what it teaches. It is through this lens that I look first before I even consider a candidate to represent me. My identity as a Christian is to come before anything else. The Apostle Paul makes this very clear. I do not just belong to myself anymore but to God. I therefore need to include him in my decisions process.
You might have been told that you aren’t voting for a party you vote for the person. This is an unfortunate misunderstanding in how our political system works. You are first and foremost voting for a party platform whether you realize it or not. Each party has their beliefs and values and goals outlined on their websites. Their platform spells out their beliefs and their vision and how they intend to accomplish their vision. This is very important to read and understand. For me as a Christian I will not cast my vote for a party that supports the taking of human life in the womb and calls it women’s health, or supports doctor assisted suicide, or actively seeks to change laws to penalize Christians for living according to their values especially when it means believing in traditional marriage and basic biology when it comes to gender.
When I see that a party platform not only does not support my worldview but condemns it, I will not vote for any candidate running on that party’s ticket. I do realize that some don’t share my opinion. They believe that someone with contrary values to the party can run on that party’s ticket and once in office can be a subversive influence and change the party from the inside. I think it is better for a candidate to run a party ticket that is more congruent with their values. For me If I can’t trust a political party to have a basic understanding of morality and a belief in absolute truth than why would I trust them to use my tax dollars appropriately. The opposite is also true. If a party has the basic moral or “social” issues right this tells me that they are more reality based and are going to be more wise with my tax dollars.
Choosing the candidate.
Once I am comfortable with the Parties values and have made my choice, I am ready to look at the candidates. This should narrow down the choices quite a bit. Only when I am at this point do I even bother to look personally at the candidates themselves. Again, remember you are voting for a party first. Don’t make the mistake of thinking because the other person on the other side has a nice personality that they are going to represent you. No, they are going to represent their party period
The majority always sets the Agenda
I cannot stress this enough. The party that is in the majority sets the agenda, runs the committees and holds the purse strings. The best way to have a system that is for the people is to have politicians that actually believe their party could lose the majority if they don’t do their job. So when you constantly vote for different people but the same party stays in power they have no fear of losing that power. They are free to shape the narrative how they see fit. However, a balance of power can be achieved by filling more seats with the opposition party. This creates a two -party system with a sense of competition. When they fear losing power and loosing the purse strings, they are less likely to trample your rights and misuse your tax dollars. I Hope this information helps you to make a better decision come election day.