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Sunday, December 07, 2008

Rahim tips the balance

U. S. Representative, 2nd Congressional District
492 of 492 precincts reporting

31,296 = 46.82% William J. Jefferson, D -
1,880 = 2.81% Malik Rahim, G -
548 = .82% Gregory W. Kahn, L -
33,122 = 49.55% Anh "Joseph" Cao, R -


31,296 + 1,880 = 33,176 which would have been enough to beat the Republican, earning Rahim "spoiler" status among critics and showing once again that Greens are so much better on the issues. In this case, the Democrat was indicted on 16 charges related to corruption, including $90,000 cash in his freezer. If voters hadn’t been so stubborn in voting for corruption, they could have voted Green and defeated the Republican. Let this be a lesson to all those who feel that their only choice is to vote corporate.


At Sun Dec 07, 04:21:00 PM CST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: Spoiler Issue

The spoiler myth is wrong on so many levels.

In the big picture, it is wrong and disempowering for voters to allow candidates, parties or the powers-that-be to claim a spoiler myth. What those people are then saying is that, We The People OWE them our vote. And, no matter how bad, wrong, corrupt, or unresponsive that candidate has been, the one to blame if he loses are citizens or third parties that defied him and tried to run a candidate in a democracy.

Also, the turnout was abysmally low. Like in many other races, blaming a third party or independent candidate is wrong, because the people on election day are not even the only pool of possible voters. If William Jefferson was worthy of winning, voters in his district would have come to the polls to support him. Neither Malik not the Green Party did anything to keep people from the polls.

One of my colleagues has suggested that we say clearly in the 2nd District Congressional Race: William Jefferson and the Democratic Party spoiled the race for Malik Rahim.

Malik Rahim was a better candidate, and Malik is not guilty of corruption. He represented the Green Party and a vision of environmental peace and justice. Malik Rahim received 1,880 votes. If William Jefferson had had any dignity and had withdrawn from the race, and/or if Barack Obama and the Democrats had done the wise thing and endorsed Malik, then Malik would have received William Jefferson's votes and won the day.

Wouldn't the Democrats have preferred Malik Rahim over an unknown Republican?

More about debunking the "Spoiler Myth":

Statistically, every candidate who enters the race changes the dynamics and numbers. But, it is never (or rarely) that one candidate directly takes votes from another candidate. The formula is much more complicated than that.

Arrow's theory is important in debunking the spoiler myth. If you really, really think "spoiling" exists as a one-to-one measure, you should look up Arrow's theory. It includes the concept that every vote has a "negative" and a "positive" vote, so sometimes people are voting for a candidate, and sometimes people are voting against a candidate. So, looking at after the election results can't determine that someone spoiled. (Ie: For election 2000 - If you dislike Gore, then to express your vote: If there were only two candidate, you would have voted for George Bush, but...if there are three candidates in the race, you might vote for Nader. Meaning, that the Nader votes in that race could have been otherwise "Bush" votes, or otherwise "stay home" votes.)

Also, if there is such thing as spoiling, then it is an even greater reason that Democrats - if they are for grassroots democracy, and believe in representing "the people" - should fight for Instant Runoff Voting and/or Proportional Representation Systems. In such systems, if there is any correspondence between the William Jefferson vote and the Malik Rahim vote, then voters would have put one of them first, and one second. And, that would have blocked the Republican from winning.

The Democrats only use the "Spoiler Myth" and all their false assumptions to get to that theory, because they want the victory for themselves, so much so that they oppress and attack the new, progressive parties trying to rise up. The Democrats are willing to keep you stuck in a two party system with themselves on the mid-right and the Republicans on the far-right, because they value power more than freedom, power more than peace, and power more than you.

At Mon Dec 08, 07:17:00 PM CST, Blogger Tom Cleland said...

I agree with everything you say, except I feel that we should take ownership of the “spoiler” label and wear it as a badge of honor. You’re right though, Jefferson did spoil the election for Rahim and the Greens. So I would say both were spoilers, but the difference was that the Democrat was corrupt. It shows a very deep and disappointing moral ineptitude in people when they would sooner choose corruption than give the Greens a chance.


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