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Voting Your Conscience...

12th AMENDMENT!!! Undecided, Republican, and Democrat voters. There is something we need to know about this upcoming election and no, I am not promoting a particular candidate or "side." This applies to all of us regardless of political leanings. If you are dismayed over your choices put forth by the two major political parties, then read on!

Many of us feel frustration over the two major political party choices. Both sides feel that voting for a 3rd party would be "throwing their vote away" and "handing their vote to the opposing party."

I urge you to NOT listen to this and instead DO vote your conscience!!! Here's why.

Under the 12th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, if no political candidate receives the 270 Electoral College (majority) votes to be President, then the U.S. House of Representatives, by votes, determines the President and the Senate, also by votes, determines the Vice President. It is important to note that the House takes the top three Electoral College vote winners and uses that pool of three candidates to select the President.

While this has not occurred since 1824-1825, it is "stand-by equipment" written into our Constitution in the event no one gets the majority of the Electoral College votes to win.

What this means is that IF enough people vote 3rd party (and there are nine total tickets listed on the ballot - I found this out only this week when my absentee ballot arrived), thereby causing neither the Republican candidate nor the Democrat candidate to get the 270, the decision goes to the Legislative Branch of the federal government.

It is unlikely a 3rd party candidate would win the whole 270 votes and be declared the victor. Under this thinking the "throwing your vote away" comments are accurate. However, a 3rd party candidate does not need to WIN. The 3rd party candidate just needs enough Electoral College votes to dislodge the two major political parties from getting to 270.

If this occurred it could open up the choices and gridlock of the two party system. Why do we not hear about this option afforded to us citizens in the Constitution? Well, you can surmise the reason on your own.

I am providing a link from the Library of Congress, which will explain this more. However, there are many sites available to also verify this is true. I am also providing the actual wording of the 12th Amendment. As this is an important part of our jobs as active citizens, I urge you to do your own reading.





Re: Voting Your Conscience...

  • I don't know of a state where any third party candidate is leading in the polls and that would be required for that state's electoral votes to not go to either Trump or Clinton. 
  • smerka said:
    I don't know of a state where any third party candidate is leading in the polls and that would be required for that state's electoral votes to not go to either Trump or Clinton. 

    Right!  Yet another reason we should get rid of the pointless electoral college, that skews the "strength" of any individual's vote based on what state they are living in.

    If electoral college were gotten rid of and that portion of the 12th Amendment was adjusted to account for that...ie, a winner needed to get a certain %/population of voters.  Then I could see, with enough people voting across the country for a third party candidate, where something like the decision going to Congress might happen.  But then, even if it did, who is Congress largely made up of?  Reps and Dems.

    Of course, all that is talking about multiple changes to the Constitution.  Which I don't see happening.

    Aside from that, @MommyLiberty5013, I really appreciate the info about the 12th Amendment.  I had no idea that clause was in there and it was very interesting to read about.  Although I don't see it being a potential for this election or other ones in the relatively near future, I'm hoping to start seeing more interest in broadening our choices.

    To elect the best PERSON for the job, regardless of their party affiliation.  Or if they even have a party affiliation at all.  It saddens me that so much of America won't ever look past the Republican or Democratic box that they live in.

    Even though I'll occasionally use it, just to talk about my own vote, I've always disliked the term "throwing away your vote".  I know you weren't the one bandying that term around.  Voting for one's favorite candidate...no matter their odds...is the true essence of what it means to vote.

  • edited October 2016
    I hear and agree with what you PPs are saying. The thing is, at what point will we Americans just buck up and bite the bullet, so to speak, and just do what needs to be done to ditch this two party system?

    An upheaval in the Electoral College via a third party upset could do that for the future of our nation, which is what we NEED.

    Also, think about how quickly certain social media events get traction. Like the Ice Bucket Challenge? We have a month until the election. A lot can happen in that time.

    Furthermore, a poster on my FB said that the Johnson ticket is actually looking at this 12th Amendment route. For some of us, even a Johnson presidency would be far better than a Clinton one, at least he's fiscally conservative and favors limited federal government.

    I think our generation owes it to ourselves and to our kids to make this happen.  

    There is a pervasive defeatist attitude about this - that we're stuck with it and we're sunk. We do not have to be. Change will only occur when the population gets tired of being messed with by elephants and donkeys.

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