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Ask Marilyn: To Vote or Not to Vote?
Sherry Reiver of Waxhaw, North Carolina, writes:
Marilyn: I don't like either presidential candidate and choose not to vote for "the lesser of the two evils." My family and friends say I should vote. They say that if I don't vote, it's the same as voting for the other person. I disagree. Am I correct?
Yes. Not voting for the lesser of two evils isn't the same as voting for the greater one. Here's why: Say Obama and Romney each get 100 million votes. (No, a president isn't elected by popular vote, but the example is the same.) You didn't vote. Say you would have voted for Obama. (I determined this choice by flipping a coin, readers. No endorsement implied!) He would have won the popular vote, but your not voting didn't make Romney win. Instead, they tied. According to your friends, your not voting would have made Romney win. That's what would have happened if you had voted for "the other person."