A Vote For Whom?

Leaving church last Sunday I found a handwritten note on our car. Some well-intentioned but misguided soul apparently was distressed by the Ron Paul bumper sticker and took the time to warn me that “a vote for Ron Paul is a vote for Obama.” The author lacked the courage to add their John Hancock, so I have no way to enlighten them. It was only the fiftieth time or so that I’ve been on the receiving end of such nonsense, but the anonymity of the warning nettled me enough to post a response here. So for anyone out there who might be similarly confused, here are three indisputable reasons why a vote for Ron Paul would NOT be a vote for Obama:

1 – Because it would be a vote for Ron Paul.

2 – Because Ron Paul has never had the chance to run against Obama and, at this point, will never appear on the ballot as an alternative to him.

3 – Because even if Ron Paul would have chosen to run independently this November (something that was never going to happen), any votes he received would be equally lost to all four of his opponents, including Obama.

This last would appear to be basic arithmetic. That it eludes so many otherwise intelligent conservatives is an indication of arrogance born of denial.

See, people say foolish things like the above because of faulty reasoning. Reduced to a syllogism, their logic runs like this: (a) If a person supports Ron Paul they most likely support smaller government, lower taxes and/or Christian values; (b) Mitt Romney is the most viable (or legitimate) candidate who stands for these things; therefore (c) if this person had not been led astray by Ron Paul they would instead be voting for Mitt Romney, right?


The devil, obviously, is in (b) above; most Ron Paul supporters don’t agree that Mitt Romney stands for anything at all, unless it’s the Federal Reserve.

Of course, most conservatives agreed with us a few months ago; the difference now is that the RINO of all RINOs has been anointed Leader of the Party of God and Country (and Israel), the Standard-Bearer of Freedom, Responsibility and Judeo-Christianity Against Islamo-Fascist Marxists and Terrorists (who we know are trying every day to kill us all and also to end women’s suffrage). In other words, he’s now officially the Republican presidential nominee; to these dear people, therefore, he is The Savior. Therein lies the arrogance.

This arrogance is possible because these conservatives live in a fantasy world, in denial of certain facts the rest of us have by now accepted. The most important of these facts is that the GOP and its national candidates can not be counted on to stand up for anything good under even the most favorable circumstances. They do not stand for limited government, for individual liberty or responsibility, for the sanctity of innocent human life, or for anything that even remotely resembles Christian values (at least if that word “Christian” refers to the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ). I call these facts advisedly, and I challenge anyone who believes otherwise to remind me of any meaningful efforts by the GOP to limit government, promote freedom, protect innocent human life or exemplify the values of biblical Christianity in the last two decades.

So if the premise is false, the conclusion is faulty. Ron Paul supporters are not denying Romney votes he could otherwise take for granted. The shocking truth is that many Ron Paul supporters, if forced to choose between Romney and Obama, would choose Obama. Don’t shoot, pardner; I’m not one of them. But a good friend who has been a registered Republican voter and activist for decades recently said this: “… there is no more than a dimes worth of difference between the R and the D. And if non-interventionism or ending the Fed are your most important issues, Obama has that ten cents. Not that a liberty minded person could ever vote for him …”

I can hear someone at the Huffington Post gasping (or puffing?), “But a vote for Ron Paul is a vote for Romney!”

Personally, I never expected Paul to win the nomination. My support for Paul was a matter of principle; I believe in the same things he believes in. In my view, a wasted vote is one cast for a candidate who does not represent my beliefs. Been there, done that, not sure I’m willing to do it again. No candidate on the ballot this November comes close to representing my beliefs. I haven’t decided what to do now. My Ron Paul bumper sticker doesn’t represent an intention to write Paul in next month. Nor does it reflect a conspiracy to punish the GOP by taking votes from Romney, who would need to earn my vote whether Paul had ever existed or not. (So far he isn’t even trying.) It remains on my car as a reminder to my fellow Republicans that our party has betrayed our country again, and as a disclaimer to my fellow Americans that, though a Republican, I am not complicit in that betrayal.


About Patrick G. Kocher
Patrick G. Kocher is a liberty minded Republican activist from southeast PA. He is a constitutionalist and history junkie whose political thinking is heavily influenced by Jefferson, Madison, Bastiat, Hayek and, most recently, Ron Paul. A committed Christian, Patrick is a member of Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia. He and his wife, Georgina, live in Chester County, PA with their four children.

5 Responses to A Vote For Whom?

  1. Pat Sellers says:

    Very well put. But, I might point out that your “good friend” could take being used and abused no longer after the Tampa flogging and promptly registered L the day after labor Day. Keep up the good work.

    Your good friend,

    • Sandra says:

      Hi Pat,
      They love the fact that you left the party. However, being registered R in 2013 is very important as the leadership can be voted out. We need to increase our numbers and literally be the change we want to see, beginning locally. The off-election years are very important, so I encourage you to jump back in and fight the good fight!

  2. Pat, yes – I wasn’t going to out you but I was disappointed to hear you had switched. Can’t say I blame you.

    Sandra, great to hear from you! Don’t be too hard on my good friend Pat – he’s been in this thing for a long time, and he’s the only person I know of to have been individually targeted during redistricting. Check out the boundaries of our 6th and 7th Congressional districts.

  3. Sandra says:

    Hey Patrick,
    I hope I didn’t come off harsh, as I surely didn’t mean it that way. I’m sorry I didn’t write well. I literally meant that they would love to see all us “purists” walk away from the party, since we’re the voice they sought to silence with the rule changes at the convention. I don’t blame anyone for wanting to give up on them, though, as it is extremely disheartening to see such immoral deeds among those in the upper ranks of the party.
    Blessings to you and your family, Patrick!

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