I'm Changing My Vote

After watching the final gubenatorial debate on DVR last night, I will cast my vote today for Peter Hutchinson of the Independence Party. A wasted vote? Maybe, but I hope not.

I will not vote for Democrat Mike Hatch for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the record indicates that he’s a horrible person to work with/for. A friend of mine who works in the state government calls him a sociopath, and his uncivil lash-out at reporters last week further confirms that judgment. So he’s not a leader. And secondly, he’s flat-out wrong on some issues, and far too ambivalent on others.

I had planned to vote for Republican incumbent Tim Pawlenty, but I really found him utterly unimpressive during the debate. He’s too political. By that I mean, he rarely answered the questions that were asked him, instead using any opportunity possible to attack Hatch or talk about an award he’s been given. He’s wrong about casinos (he favors the expansion of gambling in Minnesota) and he’s pandering to farmers with his support of ethanol (which economists and scientists agree is not a viable long-term alternative fuel solution). He further panders to out-state voters by offering massive tax breaks to businesses rather than confronting the deeper issue that corporate farming is responsible for the weakening of small towns.

Hutchinson, I must say, made sense, and as an Emersonian pragmatist, I appreciate that. He thinks the state should get out of the business of gambling — he said it’s a bad way to fund any government. He doesn’t think the government should be in the business of helping out some businesses (like professional sports franchises or out-state businesses). He supports a sales tax on clothing, combined with a lowering of the overall sales tax rate, all in order to stabilize the state revenue. These are commonsense approaches to the challenges of governing in the 21st century. He also called on both of the other candidates to pull all of their negative ads. Of course, they avoided responding to his challenge.

Could he, as an Independence Party governor, broker legislation between the two parties? I don’t know, but he is obviously very bright and articulate and well-informed, so I believe he could.

Will he win? Surely not.

(This will mark the third gubernatorial election in a row in church I’ll cast my vote for the Independent candidate: Ventura, Penny, Hutchinson.)

  • Anonymous

    This election going to be ugly up there in the North. I wish I would have opted to vote in MN. There needs to be a change there, way to contribute, too bad the independent rarely wins. Take it easy, happy voting-McG

  • carla

    I’ve been thinking the same thing since watching the three debate on Almanac last week. Hutchinson clearly has actual plans and ideas and nails the other two over and over again. The race is so tight, however, that I’m afraid we’ll end up with Pawlenty again and I’ll have to deal with casino traffic at the Mall of America. So I’m still not sure what I’m going to do.

  • Anonymous

    for me it is always the same:vote for the lesser of 2 evils.

  • Len

    I voted for Kinky for Gov of Texas. Shhh, don’t tell anybody. :-)

  • justfranks

    pray for me i am an independent in Oklahoma.

  • Anonymous

    Have faith tony. I hear Hutchinson is already thinking of running in two years. Maybe if he gets involved ina debate earlier and really establishes his positions and thoughts, he can actually win!Shelley

  • DLW

    I don’t think Hutchinson was charismatic enough of a candidate. I don’t think third parties are very good at keeping the main issues the main issues. They are better at forcing the main parties to consider additional issues in elections.Hopefully, Pawlenty will moderate his views, now that he won’t be getting as much cover from his relations with the BushAdmin. I was hoping you would consider my house church model for political activism, vision for state governance, pragmatic prolife manifesto, and my idea to integrate further Campaign Finance Reform with making elections not winner-takes-all games. sorry to spring this on you, but I think these ideas could make a difference in continuing to change the dynamics of the US’s democracy for coming years in a way that will encourage third parties to reduce the influence of $peech and make elections less negative.dlw

  • Short Stack

    Emersonian pragmatist? I don’t think so if you throw your vote away. Surely, you’re no Mill utilitatian either. perhaps a Kantian utopian? that might do. Why willingly throw a vote into the shitter and call yourself a emersonian pragmatist?


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