Yesterday was election day in our small town. A new mayor and open city council seats were up for grabs. Marathon Girl and I went to vote last night and to our surprise a line stretched out the door of the school. (Apparently there were some problems with someone's voter registration.)
I was already planning to write my own name in for city council, I told Marathon Girl she should write my name for city council too. My platform was simple: No lines at the polls on election day. I told her if I won, I'd make sure no one would have to wait in line to vote. (I should note that writing my own name wasn't some act of vanity. Of all council members on the ballot, it was hard to find a difference in their platforms. And seeing how none of them appealed to me, I couldn't feel good about voting for any of them. Thus a vote for myself.)
"I'd rather not throw my vote away," Marathon Girl said.
"It's not throwing your vote away," I said. "Throwing your vote away happens you don't vote."
"I'd rather vote for someone who has a reasonable chance of winning."
"My chances of winning would double if you'd vote for me."
"You can't double zero," Marathon Girl said.
After we voted, Marathon Girl asked me who I voted for.
"Myself," I said. "You?"
Marathon Girl told me the name of the candidate she voted for.
"You didn't vote for me?"
"I told you I'm not going to throw my vote away. If you really think you could do a better job, then run for office."
Running for office is always something I've thought about doing though I doubt I could ever lower myself to the level of a politician. Besides, once it's discovered I was a Detroit Tiger fan, the scandal that would engulf my campaign would be so great, I could never show my face in public again. (I have a hard enough time wearing the hat out in public nowadays.)
I still maintain that voting for myself was not throwing my vote away. Just because I lost doesn't mean that others who voted for losing candidates (or others who decided to write my name in) threw their votes away. For those cities and/or states that had elections yesterday the only ones who threw their votes away were those who decided not to participate.
In all likelihood I only received one vote last night, I still maintain it was better to write my own name in then not vote at all.