Thursday, November 06, 2008

How I Felt Like a Delegate to a Kind of Global Electoral College

Sure, I've had voter apathy in the past. I can't remember the first time I voted, and I know I've stayed home from the polls for some elections. Not this year. I stood in line for about an hour Tuesday morning, starting at 6:55 am, then cast my vote for Obama. A week before, I had asked someone who's far more politically savvy than me "Why vote in DC, when I know that the city's Electoral College votes will go to Obama?" He said, "Because we need to show how much we believe in him by turning out in incredible numbers. It'll look so much better with a high number of votes."

Or something like that. I agreed. And then I read something in BusinessWeek yesterday:

"Polls showed that in countries such as France and Germany, support for the Democratic candidate ranged between 65% and 80% of the population. The sense of engagement was typified by an editorial appearing early this year in Belgian newspaper De Standaard suggesting that given the stakes—on issues ranging from energy to climate change to the mortgage crisis—everybody in the world should be able to cast a vote in the U.S. Presidential election."
Europe Reacts to Obama Victory, Andy Reinhardt, 11/05/08

But not everyone in the world could vote in this election. Which made my vote count even more, considering the nature of today's problems (and the huge role the U.S. has played in causing a good number of them). So, for a brief moment, I felt like a delegate to a kind of global electoral college, which made my responsibility take on new meaning and weight.

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