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Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The Missouri Primary: A Lesson in Irrelevance

Today, all around the great state of Missouri, voters will go to the polls for the Missouri Primary election. Much debate and discussion has been going on amongst Republican voters about whom to choose in the Presidential race to face off against President Obama in the fall. The only trouble is, it really doesn’t matter.

In a strange twist of red tape, smoke and mirrors and power mongering, the primary in Missouri is “non-binding.” That means whoever wins the GOP primary today is not assured the Missouri delegates. Those will be decided next month by the caucuses.

It seems only certain states are allowed to have their primaries before March 1st, and Missouri isn’t one of them. So when Missouri decided to have it early anyway, the national parties told them if they did, they would lose half their delegates. To get around that, the geniuses in power decided to go ahead and have our primary anyway (that’ll show ‘em) and just not actually count the votes. Hmm…can anyone say “symbolism over substance?” (to borrow a phrase)

And here’s the real kicker. This meaningless trip to the polls will cost Missouri taxpayers over $7 million! That’s right, the state is shelling out over 7 mil to run a primary that has no meaning, in a state that is running $500 million in the hole. Sound like 21st Century politics to you? Sadly, yes.

So who outside Missouri cares? We all ought to. This is a microcosm of the state of affairs in this nation. The people, by and large, are ignored. The two major parties do what they want to do regardless of what most folks want. Sure we have a vote here and there. But once a person is elected, don’t expect them to actually represent YOUR interest in anything.

We see it over and over. Folks are asked about issues, polls show how folks feel about the issues, and the politicians just do what they want anyway. Case in point, I recently sent my legislators a letter of concern about a particular issue that came up in the President’s state of the union address. Two of the three did respond, but with stock, pre-written comments about the president’s speech which barely touched on the issue I had written about.

Now, I understand these are busy people. It would be impossible to respond personally to each and every comment they receive. But again, it just shows how out of touch folks in DC are to the average person here in the heartland they are supposed to be representing.

So, am I saying we just shouldn’t bother voting? Well, honestly, as for the Missouri primary, I just decided to save my golden gas and stay home. But that’s not the primary issue (pardon the pun). Instead, I am urging you to make sure you vote. This fall, especially, get out and vote and let the two major parties know that we’ve had enough. Their time is over. They think they can do whatever they want, and because we continue to buy into the two-party-only mentality, we empower them.

Now, more than ever we need independent and third party votes. I’ve made no secret on this space that I have joined the Constitution Party and will be supporting that party’s candidates. If you don’t have that option where you live, do the research and find good, godly, Constitutional minded folks to support. Enough is enough.

As I have said, repeatedly (nearly ad nauseum), if godly conservative voters would go to the polls and truly vote their conscience instead of the pragmatism and electability spouted by the two major parties, the results wouldn’t even be close. It’s time we wake up and see that the “big two” have been doing a number on us for years, making our voice and vote practically irrelevant. The situation in the Missouri primary just brings it into the open. I hope we all learn from this little lesson.

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