“Oh no. No, no, no,” I thought after Bernie Sanders had a heart attack two weeks ago. “If he doesn’t run, I won’t vote.”
I have felt increasingly ambivalent about the power of my vote. That is to say, I feel powerless. I elected precisely two politicians in the last election. The state has gone red, and my vote no longer counts.
I supported Bernie in the last presidential election, and he is still at the top of the pack, as far as I’m concerned. I agree with his socialist policies: the Green New Deal, Medicare for all, free college tuition, eliminating college debt and medical debts, and banning advertising during presidential debates.
The other candidates have made little impression on me. I can’t see jumping out of bed and running to the polls to vote for liberals with spotty voting records. And then there’s the image thing. I think Elizabeth Warren’s PR people made a huge mistake in squandering several thousand dollars on a Facebook ad, in which they posted fake news, in order to show how easily misinformation can be promulgated. Wouldn’t it have been more effective to cancel her Facebook page in protest? It’s not just the fake news problem, it’s the sad fact that people have been seduced to post all their private information at Facebook.
Okay, every candidate has “borrowed” Bernie’s policies for his or her platform, so everyone is all right, right? But the media are pushing only three of them: Biden, Warren, and Bernie. No one else has been able to climb up from the middle or the bottom of the pack. And that seems improbable.
I will vote next year, whether I like it or not. The world is a mess. I no longer have the option of not voting. One votes in case it counts.
And I’m relieved Bernie is back: he will participate in the debate on Tuesday. (Check his voting record: he does what he says.)