"Being a liberal in Utah is so discouraging. As a college student who is active in politics, it has been hard for me to encourage my peers to vote because when they say, "Our vote doesn't matter; Utah is a Republican state," I can't deny the validity of the statement. I heard about Vote Pair a few weeks ago when a student wrote a letter to the editor of our school newspaper, and it has brought new hope to the dozens of the liberal students who work at the paper, my family members, and my anti-Bush friends. Now when fellow students try to give me the excuse that they aren't voting because they don't think their votes matter, I can steer them in Vote Pair's direction. Thanks for giving my generation a new way and reason to participate in the democratic process. "
Salt Lake City, UT
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The vote-pairing movement starts with the recognition that Vice-President Gore received 500,000 votes more in the national popular vote than George W. Bush did in 2000. When you add in Ralph Nader's 2.5 million votes, the progressive candidates won more than 51% of America's popular vote. This is America's natural progressive majority.
But Bush was able to win in the electoral college because of the way progressive votes were distributed across the country (and also because of the Rehnquist Court, but this is another story). Consider this: If 600 voters who cast ballots for Nader in Florida had instead voted for Gore, and 600 voters who cast ballots for Gore in Texas had instead voted for Nader, George W. Bush would have lost the entire election and we would not be watching the escalating carnage in Iraq today.
The vote-pairing movement believes that another Bush administration will be four more years of disaster for the American people at home, war abroad and continued destruction of our standing in the world. To reject perpetual war, save our environment, end the assault on our quality of life, protect women's right to choose, and keep Bush from loading down the Supreme Court and lower courts with more right-wing judges like Justices Scalia and Thomas, we need to elect the moderate-progressive Senators John Kerry and John Edwards.
But VotePair also celebrates the accomplishments of vibrant third parties in American history, like abolition, woman's suffrage, the minimum wage, the progressive income tax. At a time when removing Bush from office calls for maximum unity, we reject efforts to demonize people affiliated with other parties. We affirm that strong third parties with equal rights are a critical voice in American politics. We don't want to drive any progressive out of the political system; we just want our friends to use their heads.
In 2000 we saw that a few hundred votes can make all the difference in the world. VotePair will mobilize tens or even hundreds of thousands of progressives to vote as part of a win-win political alliance in 2004. Join us.