How is an Election Ever Truly Won When Liberties are Lost?

I am and have always been a believer that our right to vote as an [eligible to vote] American citizen is something that should never be tampered with on a state or federal level.

From day one of the DNC’s [and GOP’s] decision to strip the voters of Michigan and/or Florida of their right to have their vote count, I have actively voiced my opposition.

Good for those voters who went to the polls in the MILLIONS and voted anyway!! Good for you!!

This debacle with Michigan and Florida is a lesson to be learned…on many levels.

When leadership of a political party has the power to strip eligible American citizens of their right to have their vote count in an election — through absolutely no fault of the voters — then those leaders have WAAAAY toooo much power and the rules need to be changed.

Through the passed few months, we have witnessed the irresponsible and reprehensible power playing by certain members of the elected Democratic and Republican leadership in their call for presidential candidates to drop out of the race. According to these “leaders” in their infinite wisdom, more than one candidate in a race is bad for their respective party.

I’ve heard on more than one occasion by members of both the Democratic and Republican parties that the candidates with the lesser number of delegates should drop out of the presidential race for the good of their respective party.

REALLY???

When did becoming an elected official be about what’s good for the party OVER what’s good for the country?

When did striping eligible American citizens of their right to have their vote count become something good for our country?

Shame, shame, shame on the elected officials pushing to have the votes of eligible American citizens disenfranchised, voided, and meaningless.

And

Shame, shame, shame on the elected officials remaining silent on this issue.

The following is a letter from Senator Hillary Clinton to Senator Barack Obama I received yesterday via email:


May 8, 2008

Senator Barack Obama
Obama for America
P.O. Box 8102
Chicago, IL 60680

Dear Senator Obama,

This has been an historic and exciting campaign. Millions of new voters have been brought into the process and their enthusiasm for the Democratic Party and the principles for which you and I have fought and continue to fight is unprecedented.

One of the foremost principles of our party is that citizens be allowed to vote and that those votes be counted. That principle is not currently being applied to the nearly 2.5 million people who voted in primaries in Florida and Michigan. Whoever emerges as the Democratic nominee will be hamstrung in the general election if a fair and quick resolution is not reached that ensures that the voices of these voters are heard. Our commitment now to this goal could be the difference between winning and losing in November.

I have consistently said that the votes cast in Florida and Michigan in January should be counted. We cannot ignore the fact that the people in those states took the time to be a part of this process and to make their preferences known. When efforts were untaken by leaders in those states to hold revotes to ensure that they had a voice in selecting our nominee, I supported those efforts. In Michigan, I supported a legislative effort to hold a revote that the Democratic National Committee said was in complete compliance with the party’s rules. You did not support those efforts and your supporters in Michigan publicly opposed them. In Florida a number of revote options were proposed. I am not aware of any that you supported. In 2000, the Republicans won an election by successfully opposing a fair counting of votes in Florida. As Democrats, we must reject any proposals that would do the same.

Your commitment to the voters of these states must be clearly stated and your support for a fair and quick resolution must be clearly demonstrated.

I am asking you to join me in working with representatives from Florida and Michigan and the Democratic National Committee to arrive at a solution that honors the votes of the millions of people who went to the polls in Florida and Michigan. It is not enough to simply seat their representatives at the convention in Denver. The people of these great states, like the people who have voted and are to vote in other states, must have a voice in selecting our party’s nominee.

Sincerely,

Hillary Rodham Clinton

[Blog author writing again]

For me, this issue is NOT about whether I’m for Hillary Clinton or for Barack Obama.

That’s why I stated clearly at the beginning of this blog that from day one, even before the voters of Michigan and Florida went to the polls to vote, I was opposed to the DNC’s decision to make the voters of those states count for nothing. (I also oppose the GOP’s decision to negate a percentage of those voters.)

This is about being FOR our right as eligible American citizens to have our vote count.

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