Monday, October 25, 2004

There Are No Safe States

Four years ago, many supporters of Ralph Nader recommended a switch to Al Gore -- the lesser evil -- in states where it might change the outcome. Elsewhere, they could vote their conscience. Well, that escape hatch has been closed.

There are no "safe states." If there were, how do you explain New York -- where Democrats far outnumber Republicans -- having a Republican governor and a Republican mayor? For this and other good reasons, many now feel obliged to vote for the lesser evil -- Kerry, with all his faults -- against Bush, the greatest evil ever to have occupied the White House.

New Yorkers are lucky, though. They will be able to vote for an old hero of the struggle for peace and justice, in the person of David McReynolds. He managed to scrape up enough petitions to get on the ballot as the Green candidate for Senate. He can’t be called a spoiler -- no way -- because the Republicans put up only a token candidate against Chuck Schumer, one of their very favorite Senators. So, Schumer can’t lose. That makes it a barf to hear him waffling like Kerry for the duration of this campaign. But it does confirm my point that these guys can be pushed around -- pushed either way. Right now, the crucial job is to get voters to the polls, and get their votes counted. Keep in mind -- there are no safe states.