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I am absolutely certain that this question has been asked so if someone just wants to link me to it...I'll just go read it 😉 but here's my question:

I am trying to understand how people who try to live their lives as their best selves, try to make choices that are moral and loving and decent..people who put a very high price tag on doing the right thing with regards to society and individuals can support a candidate who doesn't. I am NOT trying to be snarky. I know some amazing people who appear to really care about living their faith or living a moral life who support some of the candidates/politicians who say the most heinous things and do the most heinous things. I am trying to understand how they can accept/tolerate it.

Again...just direct me to the thread...don't want to start a fight..but yes I know this is not a topic that can stay instructive. It will probably become destructive, but I just want to understand the thought process.

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Candidates on both sides of the aisle stand for things I don't, and I have to vote for someone. My vote simply goes to the person I feel is most likely to uphold the Constitution.

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I think hypocrisy will never not be a thing. All of us are hypocrites, at least at times, to some degree or other. And some more than others. It's part and parcel of being human. I posted in your other thread that I struggle with cognitive dissonance, my own as well as what I see in others. It seems to me that a lot of people don't struggle with it at all, but find it rather easy to make mental excuses/contortions to justify their inconsistencies. Perhaps part of it is a lack of self awareness.

People are interesting.

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I saw a really interesting video during the last election cycle.  It talked about how our two-party system has turned to be something so that most people don't vote "for" their candidate.  Instead they vote "against" the other guy.  For me, that made total sense.

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Every candidate for office is ‘heinous’ to someone. I’ve heard it argued about SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES because they hold a religious view or are associated with a charitable non profit group. Anyone thinking their candidate has absolute moral high ground and not understanding why the ‘other side’ might possibly hold different values that would shift that balance in their mind toward the OTHER GUY is being self righteous and foolish. 

People fail and suck, they’re inconsistent, they make personal and politically motivated choices. We do the best we can given the flaws inherent in each of us as well as the types of people who can actually succeed through higher and higher echelons of the public and private sector.

There are no perfect people, there are just those who align more or less with one’s personal goals and values, on however many (or few) topics the individual decides matters to them. It’s that simple.

Edited by Bagels McGruffikin
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Some people have disagreed more with the opponent about different things, so they vote for someone they disagree with one a few items.  

Some people vote on one issue only; therefore, if they agree with a candidate on that one issue, they feel fine ignoring all the rest.

Some people simply vote straight ticket with little regard to the individual's beliefs.

Some people just vote because it's what you do, but they don't bother researching candidates' platforms, so they don't realize what exactly they've voted for. 

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1 hour ago, LJPPKGFGSC said:

I saw a really interesting video during the last election cycle.  It talked about how our two-party system has turned to be something so that most people don't vote "for" their candidate.  Instead they vote "against" the other guy.  For me, that made total sense.

This is me. I find very few politicians on a national scale someone I can passionately support. Most candidates that I end up voting for it becomes a "hold your nose and vote for..." kind of thing. And most of the time, I look at the national candidates and think, " in a nation of this size, is this the best we could do?" I'm voting for what I consider is the least bad option. It's very very discouraging.

However, I don't despise or judge those who consider the least bad option somebody else. We all have different issues that tip the scale in a particular direction. Like economics, healthcare, foreign policy, etc. may be more or less important to individuals. So while they disagree with a candidate's stance on some issues, particular ones can tip the scale toward or away from winning their vote. 

 

Edited by fairfarmhand
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first off, voting is complicated for many people. 

I know people who voted for one candidate who became president.  They became completely disillusioned with him as president and voted against that party the next time.  

Another way it has been explained to me is that, no, they do not like the person as a person... but they are not voting them in as a religious leader... but as a politician.  They vote for the candidate that represents their views best.   Do they like the method the politician uses?  Nope. but they morally feel obligated to vote for the person who aligns with their political/social views the most.  Basically, they hold their nose and vote.  

Other people most definitely are voting against the other candidate.  

And I do know people who believe their candidate is the best candidate from a moral/religious standpoint.  They believe their candidate will do the best with the job they have/had.  

Part of the problem is that social media has made candidates and their supporters into monsters. I have definitely seen people I know say things like, "If you vote for XYZ candidate you are an evil person perpetuating evil."    There is no room to agree to disagree or see a different solution to a problem... nope - you are evil if you don't see it *their* way (whichever way it is).   It just moves people into their own ghetto where they only hear the echo chamber.  No discussion or dissent is allowed.   And then we only get more entrenched in our own confirmation that the "other" is not just wrong but evil.   

I think the whole mentality that "polite people don't discuss religion and politics" has made us into people who *can't* discuss religion and politics politely (whispers-  and now science/medical stuff/).

Edited by PrincessMommy
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I spoil my vote in my country of origin as we can’t write in another candidate. Spoilt votes are better than not voting because it is used as one of the means to show disgust for all the candidates on the ballot. I can understand why people didn’t want to vote for the former First Lady.

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I don't vote for the person. I vote for their actions or at least what they pretend they will be doing. I vote for policies.

So, without going into specifics, if I hear a candidate say "I will do X" and I disagree with X,  I won't vote for them, even if they are Mother Teresa reincarnated.

I have always been a firm believer that if you reach that level, there is no way you are a good moral person. NO WAY!!! So, that's how I vote

 

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13 minutes ago, cintinative said:

I am just here to say I think this should be on the politics board.

@Rosie_0801

You're absolutely right. I am so sorry. I thought that was the room I was in at the time. Ive been flipping back and forth so many times I forgot where I was. So sorry about that!!! 

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I will try to stay non-political:

Choose the lesser of the 2 evils is my philosophy when it is time to vote. It is a very individual decision based on what your value system is: For example, in my case, if someone tweets or endorses heinous things, has no qualms about spouting racist/sexist/classist/misogynistic rhetoric and does not behave in a manner expected from someone in public office, my vote might go to the other guy who does not do those things openly. Not saying that one party is better off than another, just saying that openly endorsing behavior that is obnoxious to me will not earn my vote. I live in a Blue state, so, no matter how I vote, the outcome from my state is pre-determined for some things, but, people Iike me count when it comes to smaller outcomes at the county, city levels. 

But, I am puzzled by the choices of some people: my very mild mannered, vegetarian, animal loving friend famously (in my small social circle, it was our breaking news) voted for a political candidate whose family members hunt wild animals for sport (including african trophy hunting safaris). 

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To the OP:  It’s good that you said ‘not snarky’ because often (I would say usually) these kinds of questions are either snarky or virtue signally.  From all sides:

—I don’t see how anyone can believe in the Bible (or God) and not believe in 6 day creation

—I don’t see how people can vote against their own self-interest

—I don’t see how people can vote for someone who supports tearing babies limb from limb without anesthesia

—I don’t see how people can vote for someone who dog whistles to racists (or who is a racist)

—I don’t see how an American can vote for a Democrat

—I don’t see how a woman can vote for a Republican

—If you don’t vote for me, you aren’t Black

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2 hours ago, LJPPKGFGSC said:

I saw a really interesting video during the last election cycle.  It talked about how our two-party system has turned to be something so that most people don't vote "for" their candidate.  Instead they vote "against" the other guy.  For me, that made total sense.

Well, when you have two viable parties and many, many millions of voters in this country, the odds that you are going to agree with either side completely are pretty darn slim.  I have some non-negotiable items and I vote accordingly.  The candidate does not have to be someone I “like”, that I would want to have dinner with, or even be around.  For the most part, very few of the presidents were probably people I would have wanted for a friend or neighbor....the people I like would rarely make effective politicians.  I agree about voting for who will uphold the Constitution and would add maintain the rule of law.

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First of all, the candidate I support may not be anyone I like or even agree with all that much.  I just agree more with that candidate than the other.  Furthermore, I am not choosing great moral leaders or a leader of my church, I am choosing someone to do some other job be it President, Senator, Representative or somebody on the local or state level but none are chosen as moral leaders.  Now a few years ago,  we had a senatorial election where I could not support either candidate according to my beliefs.  I just wrote in, knowing my vote was wasted.  And a few people I know could not understand why I would not support the candidate from our joint party but that was because they were one issue voters.

 

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5 hours ago, Rosie_0801 said:

The thread can stay open as long as you all continue keeping the discussion down the philosophical/sociological end of the spectrum.

Thanks Rosie...so far so good 😉 

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, TravelingChris said:

First of all, the candidate I support may not be anyone I like or even agree with all that much.  I just agree more with that candidate than the other.  Furthermore, I am not choosing great moral leaders or a leader of my church, I am choosing someone to do some other job be it President, Senator, Representative or somebody on the local or state level but none are chosen as moral leaders.  Now a few years ago,  we had a senatorial election where I could not support either candidate according to my beliefs.  I just wrote in, knowing my vote was wasted.  And a few people I know could not understand why I would not support the candidate from our joint party but that was because they were one issue voters.

 

This is interesting to me. Really...not snark...I'm curious. So if a candidate lined up with your important issues but you found out something they did that was completely illegal and immoral that would not change your opinion? What if it was something that they could potentially do in their new position and could have dire effects on their constituents.

Edited by PerfectFifth
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For a long time I chose what I thought was the lesser of two evils but at some point I personally felt things had gotten so bad that the lesser of two evils was just evil. So lately I've voted 3rd party. Do I agree with everything the 3rd party candidate is for? No. It is a protest vote more than anything but I haven't much for choices. 

 

There is a temptation to put in a quote from the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy here but it is long if you want enough context to undrrstand it without reading the book.

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31 minutes ago, PerfectFifth said:

This is interesting to me. Really...not snark...I'm curious. So if a candidate lined up with your important issues but you found out something they did that was completely illegal and immoral that would not change your opinion? What if it was something that they could potentially do in their new position and could have dire effects on their constituents.

I used to think that I could vote based only on the issues, but then I discovered it’s not that black and white for me after all. I found I had certain lines that had nothing to do with my issues that once crossed, made a candidate someone I could never vote for. 

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I have been voting whoever is closest to my beliefs on the issues and who as much as can research is not morally reprehensible.  This usually leads me to vote outside the big two parties. 

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18 hours ago, PerfectFifth said:

I am absolutely certain that this question has been asked so if someone just wants to link me to it...I'll just go read it 😉 but here's my question:

I am trying to understand how people who try to live their lives as their best selves, try to make choices that are moral and loving and decent..people who put a very high price tag on doing the right thing with regards to society and individuals can support a candidate who doesn't. I am NOT trying to be snarky. I know some amazing people who appear to really care about living their faith or living a moral life who support some of the candidates/politicians who say the most heinous things and do the most heinous things. I am trying to understand how they can accept/tolerate it.

Again...just direct me to the thread...don't want to start a fight..but yes I know this is not a topic that can stay instructive. It will probably become destructive, but I just want to understand the thought process.


I understand precisely what you're saying.  This disconnect has put a serious stumbling block between me and the political party I most closely associate with and put me at odds with people I love and respect, but with whom I currently disagree they support.  I feel a decent amount of disgust/frustration emanating from friends of both parties for admitting I am a fan of ZERO candidates currently.

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8 hours ago, PerfectFifth said:

This is interesting to me. Really...not snark...I'm curious. So if a candidate lined up with your important issues but you found out something they did that was completely illegal and immoral that would not change your opinion? What if it was something that they could potentially do in their new position and could have dire effects on their constituents.

First of all, I more often than not think that a politician is corrupt. It is so often that I would not be voting at all most of the time if I had to only vote for people who agree with at least some of my positions (and nothing I abhor) and were good, moral people.  Often times, in fact usually, my candidate in the primary is not the winner.   As to the bolded, the candidate for Senate did align with many of my positions but also didn't align with lots of others and ones that I felt were super important plus I thought he did and does act immorally.  That is why I did a write in.

I don't know if you are asking in some round a bout way about my voting in the 2016 presidential election,   If you are, I found both candidates personally untasteful but knew for certain I could not vote for the Dem candidate because I found her to have done completely illegal and immoral things that affected the security of our country and the lives of those lost in Libya.  So then my choices were Rep or LIb.  I decided to hold my nose and vote for Rep and prayed that he wouldn't revert back to being a Dem but that he would do a good job.  But it didn't make any difference how I voted for President at all and I knew that.   I live in a very red state.

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9 hours ago, PerfectFifth said:

This is interesting to me. Really...not snark...I'm curious. So if a candidate lined up with your important issues but you found out something they did that was completely illegal and immoral that would not change your opinion? What if it was something that they could potentially do in their new position and could have dire effects on their constituents.

Oh and there was no third party for the Senate race. 

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41 minutes ago, square_25 said:

Personally, I'm pretty pragmatic. I would baulk to vote in utter incompetents, whatever party. For instance, the office of the president is ultimately partially a managerial one. I would be very hesitant to vote in someone who seems like they'd be awful at managing people given their history. 

(This doesn't mean that I don't have values, because obviously I do. But some of my values do involve people being good at their jobs.) 

Yes.  As an English person living in Scotland, I don't have a visceral drive towards Scottish independence, and I am profoundly concerned about the lack of economic underpinning that in independent Scotland could rely upon.  The current First Minister of Scotland (comparable in some ways to a state governor in US terms) is leader of the party pushing for independence; she has, however, shown herself to be extremely competent and a brilliant communicator through the Covid crisis.

Meanwhile the Prime Minister of the UK Boris Johnson is, I believe, a profoundly selfish person with no fixed moral compass.  He has flailed about through the Covid crisis, lacking an appreciation for the good government resources that were available for him to draw on (employing inexperienced private companies for track and trace rather than talking to the local public health chiefs), and favouring 'old boys club' loyalty over the public good.

Edited by Laura Corin
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This is a little off-topic, but I've been having similar thoughts.  On the advice of a YouTuber I recently ordered the full set of Little Jewel books for my youngest two from Rod and Staff. In with the books was a tract about why Mennonites aren't political. It was a sort of Jesus chose to not have a kingdom on this earth and we can't vote for a commander in chief to order about a military to kill people when we wouldn't kill.  I don't come from pacifist religions, in fact my parents were both in the military and my dad thought pacificism in its truest sense was immoral, but when I read that tract I understood it in a way I didn't before.

Most of the people I know who ignore personal traits to vote for a party are one or two or at most 3 issue voters.  The numerous moral failings of the individual don't matter because for most of them, life matters more. I can't figure out what life has to do with the freedom to spread a pandemic, but a lot of them feel that way, even as they know people in the hospital or those who have died from Covid.  It's completely nonsensical to me.

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On 7/28/2020 at 6:57 AM, TravelingChris said:

I don't know if you are asking in some round a bout way about my voting in the 2016 presidential election, 

I'm not 😉 It's none of my business and Rosie said she can leave it here if we keep it nonspecific so I am not crossing into the politics line lol. 

But thank you for your answer.

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Well, my extended family members seem to get hooked on single issues. They vote for candidates who are mostly likely to keep things the way they are regarding those specific issues. One person revolves around gun rights, another is anti-abortion, and the third is worried about people using the "wrong" bathrooms. The silver lining of COVID is that I have an excuse not to go to family parties now.

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On 7/28/2020 at 7:31 AM, square_25 said:

I don't think you DO need to vote for the moral candidate. The candidate you vote for will affect how the country moves forward, and I personally don't care much whether they are moral in their personal life. 

 

For me, the way they conduct their personal life matters because I don’t think people tend to be two totally different people. If someone is a liar in their personal life, I would expect they might be a liar in office. If someone cheats on their spouse, I worry about how gravely they will take their oath of office. If someone did something truly morally reprehensible in their personal life, I wouldn’t put it past them to do something truly morally reprehensible in their position of elected office. 

That said, I realize that in current times, sometimes there may be elections for various positions where neither choice fully passes this part of the sniff test. In that case, I do the best I can weighing all the different things. Fortunately, it’s not frequently that both candidates are completely morally corrupt. 

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