Let’s Call American Elections What They Are: Rigged

A recent AlterNet post said “Let’s Call the Superdelegate Process What It is: Election Rigging” Well let’s look at this. What is “rigging” except a process of denying certain individuals a fair opportunity to compete in a contest the outcome of which is already “fixed” before the contest occurs? We need to see this alleged rigging through superdelegates to the Democratic National Convention in the broader context of how American elections actually are rigged. They are rigged, I will argue, in that they deny opportunity for election to four categories of people: (a) the relatively poor; (b) those of relatively extreme political persuasions; (c) those who are challenging a sitting holder of a public office; (d) people of less appealing or charismatic personalities. The wealthy (or those who have access to the resources of wealth), political “centrists”, office incumbents and the personally appealing are able to enjoy advantages that practically “rig” elections in their favors.

I won’t devote too much space to elaborating on these well-known sources of advantage and disadvantage in electoral contests. Political campaigns are so outrageously expensive, and public financing of them is so grievously inadequate, that one must either be independently wealthy or willing and able to accept the contributions of those vested interests who are only too willing to invest in some political influence through contributing to their campaigns. Our quadrennial presidential elections, involving a system of two parties relatively even in voting strength, guarantee that candidates of more purely conservative or progressive political views must, to attract the all-important support of “independents,” tack their political appeals toward the center of political philosophies, hoping only that they won’t so egregiously offend their conservative or progressive “base” that these folks will stay home on election day, or else support 3rd party candidates who are more congenial to their beliefs. As to challenger disadvantage, it’s about as easy to unseat an incumbent legislator as it is to beat the home team in a professional basketball game; the political game is “rigged” in favor of the incumbent because people evaluate their representative in terms of how much he or she “does for” the home district or state, how much for example those much-maligned “earmarks” will come home to the local pork barrel. Finally, the factor of “charisma” or the “likeable” personality is a huge factor in our elections; as was said about G.W. Bush, the average Joe would be more likely to want to “have a beer” with him than either of his opponents, the wooden Gore or the aristocratic Kerry. With the exception of Truman and Ford (both of whom gained their presidencies by constitutional rising from the vice-presidency rather than by election), all our Presidents since FDR have been more or less such charismatics, no matter how disastrous for the country some of their presidencies may have been. I could go on, but I want to get to the superdelegates.

To re-iterate the lament against superdelegates, it is said that they are allowed to substitute their “own” voices for those of the “ordinary” voters who have voted in primaries and caucuses. I have two things to say about these charges. The first is to observe that, if elections generally in this country are “rigged” in the manner I’ve suggested above, these superdelegates will not be immune from the same influences that influenced those sacred “voters” in the primaries and caucuses. They owe their own elections to personal or sponsored wealth, they are raised in the 2-Party culture which defines the preferred candidate as the one must “viable” in competition with the other party, they have been judged and their electoral opponents have been judged in terms of their likeability. In other words, they will use their judgment in the same way “ordinary” voters choose the candidate they think will fare best in the general election; if these judgments are divided in the electorate, they will be divided in the superdelegates; a “wash out” in terms of their supposedly decisive influence, which seems exactly to be happening as Clinton support among superdelegates erodes and that of Obama increases (with, I predict, declines in claims of superdelegate “rigging” from those in the Obama camp).

The second and more “principled” point that I would make about superdelegates is the view that it perhaps is a good thing for “democracy” if these men and women are somewhat independent of the views of “the voters” in making their choices for a nominee. Tocqueville, whose views Noorani likes to quote in his article, is somewhat admiring of the genius of the American Constitution’s “checks and balances” that help to ameliorate what the French aristocrat saw as the tendency toward a “tyranny of the majority” in American life. “Representative” bodies like city, county, state and national legislatures involve a process of “deliberation” prior to votes that commit the given entity to a line of public policy. A member of Congress should, in this view, be able to give a more reasoned consideration to a decision than can typically be done in a political campaign in which, before voters “speak” with their votes, they have been bombarded with the likes of sound bite commercials, bumper stickers and swift boat attacks on candidates. There is a certain genius, I think, in a political party reserving a certain number of seats at a nominating convention for persons who are “uncommitted” and therefore presumably amenable to reasoning and debate. Maybe superdelegates are not the best way to do this; they are, after all, subjected to the same “rigging” influences that I described above. But at least they are men and women with some degree of experience in deliberation on issues that arise in their executive or legislative offices so that, absent another distribution formula, it may be as good a way as any to keep the nomination of a presidential candidate “open” to candidates none of whom have captured a majority of delegates in primaries and caucuses.

I close with the words of an American contemporary of Tocqueville, Henry David Thoreau which, even though they don’t sound so “democratic,” may contain an element of political wisdom when it comes to determining the “virtue” of different presidential candidates. “A wise man will not leave the right to the mercy of chance, nor wish it to prevail through the power of the majority. There is little virtue in the action of masses of men.” (Civil Disobedience).

Jerry D. Rose is a retired professor of sociology from State University of New York at Fredonia, now living in Gainesville Florida. He may be contacted at: jerrydrose11@yahoo.com. Read other articles by Jerry, or visit Jerry's website.

17 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. Marklar said on March 3rd, 2008 at 5:32pm #

    You forgot the religious test for politics. If your religion is outside the mainstream you are unlikely to gain office. If you are *gasp* an atheist or agnostic you can just kiss your ass goodbye.

    Further more in 14 states it is actually ILLEGAL to hold public office as an avowed atheist or agnostic. This is of course blatantly unconstitutional but will anybody notice or care in a country in which 80% identify as christian.

  2. Max Shields said on March 3rd, 2008 at 5:42pm #


    At this stage does it really matter? I mean superdelegates. The choices that have left didn’t leave because of the delegate set up but because of money, corporate media and a basic disdain by the powers in the power in honest talk.

    The real rigging comes when people like Nader, Kucinch (and even Paul) are shut out of the debates and kept off ballots. That’s Party tyranny!

    Nader’s looking better all the time. I’d like to see the Green’s endorse him and build a coalition with his independent run…

  3. Michele said on March 3rd, 2008 at 6:55pm #

    Kudos to the above comment. Kucinich and Paul (maybe Nader) were shut out unfairy (illegally) and the American people have essentially lost their voice! Might as well burn the Constitution because it certainly isn’t being followed…I’m not ashamed to say that I’m ashamed and heartsick at what we have become…

  4. Tim Hollis said on March 3rd, 2008 at 7:21pm #

    Thanks for a fine post on an important subject. It was painful to watch Kucinich get aced out. Imagine what healing could have been initiated.

  5. Jerry D. Rose said on March 3rd, 2008 at 8:04pm #

    I appreciate the comments posted today and want to associate myself with the specific allegation that Kucinich was a victim of a kind of rigging in his exclusion with the thundering silence of almost everybody, including the “liberal” action organizations, the progressive caucus and the other candidates. If you didn’t see my article on this, take a peek: http://www.countercurrents.org/rose270108.htm

  6. hp said on March 4th, 2008 at 9:18am #

    Well even if Kucinich or Paul become viable candidates, what do you do about those who, in Stalin’s brutal honesty, count the votes?

  7. Jerry D. Rose said on March 4th, 2008 at 9:52am #

    hp, an excellent question. In writing the article I was fully aware of this all-too-prevalent form of election-rigging by those who count the votes. One can’t do or write about everything as once but the way I see it is this: (1) yes, what’s the point of having viable candidates if the vote counters don’t count the votes; but (2) what’s the point of having an accurate vote count if the voters themselves are bamboozled by the likes of who has the most commercials or yard signs, who is or isn’t a D or R, who has the “appealing” personality, whether they are incumbents who can stock the pork barrel of the local folks. Unless we can deal with BOTH these issues, we can kiss goodbye the hope of ever getting “representatives” who truly represent our interests rather than our more juvenile emotions.

  8. hp said on March 4th, 2008 at 1:10pm #

    Maybe they should all be required to appear on American Idol. Then at least we know they will be seen and heard.

  9. Mark Konrad said on March 4th, 2008 at 4:53pm #

    Dear Professor Rose,

    I enjoyed your piece, and I agree with most of what you have to say along with the comments from your readers. I’ll state up front that I have zero faith in the honesty of the election process in the United States. However, for those who do choose to participate here is an issue I’ve been trying to make more widely known and more visible for years with seeming little success:

    Many or most American voters are under the mistaken impression that when they enter the voting booth their choice is limited to the “official party nominee” candidates whose names are pre-printed or pre-posted on the voting machine ballots.

    That is not the case. Forty-two out of the fifty states permit “write-in” votes to be cast in federal elections. By “write-in” I don’t mean vote at home and mail it in. I mean it’s perfectly legal in most states to”write-in” the name of whomever one pleases for a particular office. It can be the name of one of the “celebrity” candidates who wasn’t officially nominated by the party, or it can be your cousin, your neighbor or a guy or girl you work with. Or whomever.

    The Establishment parties would prefer to keep that information as quiet as possible. The last thing they want to do is advertise the fact that voters are not limited to voting for the “official party nominees” in most states.

    Listed below are the eight states that do not permit write-in votes for President. All other states DO allow write-in votes.

    Write-in votes NOT permitted in

    1.) Hawaii
    2.) Louisiana
    3.) Nebraska
    4.) Nevada
    5.) New Mexico
    6.) Oklahoma
    7.) South Carolina
    8.) South Dakota

    Ref: Here

    If more American were fully cognizant of the fact that they can “write-in” the name of whomever they please for office, in this case for President, they wouldn’t need to agonize over who is officially nominated by the Establishment Political Parties.

    I’m a Ron Paul supporter myself. In my opinion Ron Paul, Dennis Kucinich, Mike Gravel, Ralph Nader and other lesser-known candidates should display the above information prominently at their websites. They should be promoting this information during their campaign appearances. There are (unfortunately) many registered voters who are not aware of the fact that they can write-in a vote for someone other than the officially nominated candidates.

    Thanks Again for your excellent piece,

    Best Regards,

    Mark Konrad
    Las Vegas, NV

    P.S. Max, Michele, and Tim, as you know you can vote for whomever you please if you live in Florida or in any state not on the list above. Unfortunately hp is quite right, and he or she echoes my sentiments exactly — the vote COUNTERS are the people with the real power. However I would like to see members of the American public get it into their collective consciousness that they’re not limited to voting for the official nominee of any party.

    Cheers, Mark

  10. Hue Longer said on March 5th, 2008 at 4:57am #

    super is not so super if you ask me…

    benevolence is a myth when it comes to people we are allowed to hear of

  11. Jerry D. Rose said on March 5th, 2008 at 3:40pm #

    Mark Konrad does a useful service by publishing this information about the availability of the “write in” option in most U.S. states. Whether this is an effective option for dissidents interested in having an impact on presidential and other elections is another matter. For one thing, as several people have said (and I agree) it does little good to vote if you don’t get your vote counted; and I think we need more information on whether and how write-in votes are counted and especially whether they will be REPORTED. Without the counting and the reporting, there seems little opportunity for write-in votes to make any impact on the tendency, as I noted in my article, for people to assume that their votes constitutes a “voice” only as long as they are cast for one of the major political parties.

    I don’t want, however, to remove a write-in strategy from the “table” of options that need to be considered by people seeking political expression outside the two-party (which is in fact a one-party) system. In fact I’m trying to start up a “committee of correspondence” among people concerned about this question, not just for the presidential election but for more effective dissident involvement in elections at all levels. If any readers are interested in joining this dialogue, please contact me at (to save you looking it up at the end of the article): moc.oohaynull@11esordyrrej.

  12. Realist said on March 6th, 2008 at 3:31am #

    I would like to amend Mark Konrad’s point listing the states that overtly don’t allow write-in voting. The point I make has to do with those who count the votes, they who have decided that unless a write-in candidate gets a certain percentage of the votes cast, or some other impossible goal, the write-in vote is discarded – in effect, a ban on write-in voting.

  13. Lj said on March 6th, 2008 at 6:28am #

    Methinks you doth make it too complicated, Jerry.

    Beloved progressive (“liberal”) cartoonist Herblock wrote an amazing cartoon in 1961 with the caption “Some are more equal than others” and “1 rural area vote = 100 city votes.”

    Actually, those aren’t captions… the cartoon is titled “Animal Farm” and shows a PIG as a taskmaster/overseer, sitting on a ballot box with a whip and holding a sign that reads “some are more equal than others.” The ballot box has the inscription, “1 rural vote = 100 city votes” as the pig sits facing an urban scene (row house building) and dozens of sorry looking voters penned in behind a chain link fence!

    It is an amazing graphic, truly an icon of the age, the age of Orwell’s Animal House, segregation, ballot-fixing, the cold-war, and other assorted “old time” sins.

    The point is that RURAL OVER-REPRESENTATION is established in, fixed into the US Constitution. All the tiny rural states get TWO senators, even though California, New York, Texas, and Florida have only two senators, as well.

    This is a HUGE imbalance in voter influence, which is exactly how it was set up to be by the Constitution. This setup probably has its merits, too, because if gives those established in America (those whose families have worked to establish the nation) an advantage over newcomers (immigrants). The movie “Gangs of New York” showed how quickly shiploads of immigrants could overwhelm an existing political order, with Tammany Hall literally buying the votes of Irish immigrants as they stepped off the boats. No one wants to be politically conquered by waves of immigrants, especially with the government using your tax dollars to subsidize those immigrants.
    (Ironic, isn’t it, that that precisely describes white America’s own Manifest Destiny, with the US calvary helping pioneers and settlers take land from the natives?)

    Back to the point, IT IS UP TO THE _democratic_ Party (the “Democratic” party) to WORK to EVEN THIS IMBALANCE OUT.
    Unfortunately, somewhere over the past 3 decades, the inside-beltway Democrat’s club, has forgotten how to defend 100 years of democratic ideals and progressive progress!

    How many American voters today know that UAW founding president Walter Reuther survived not one, but TWO ASSASSINATION ATTEMPTS by FoMoCo hired goons? That legacy of SACRIFICE from the ’20s, ’30s, ’40’s, and 1950s is how Americans came to have an 8 hour workday, job safety standards, retirement, pensions, and health-care, federal protection of our savings accounts, and all the other benefits we take for granted today. How many Democrats today do we see or hear standing up for those hard-fought standards? (Besides Dennis Kucinich… crickets chirping!)

    In the 2002 election, no less than Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle allowed the Republican Rove media machine to trash Georgia Senator (and Vietnam war triple-amputee) Max Cleland with NO Democratic push-back.. Cleland lost his seat (to Max Chambliss, almost certainly by thousands of stolen-and-trashed Democratic votes, the vote tally was way off from the exit polls)… and so to0 did the soft-spoken Tom Daschle go down to the Bush-Rove sneering Republican attack ads in that electoin.

    Although being the Senator from South Dakota is SUPPOSED to give ACTUAL VOTERS an opportunity to defy the big city political, big-money machine, that possibility depends on having FIGHTING CANDIDATES who spell out to their voters the NEED to vote for one’s own economic interests!

    The book, “What’s the Matter with Kansas” also highlights this newfound tendency for rural, urban, usually lower income, net-tax RECIPIENT voters, to vote for the big city elites who run the power machine. How many Americans today realize that “solid red Heartland states” like KANSAS and MINNESOTA and MICHIGAN…. once led the PROGRESSIVE political wave? Actually, that “Solid Red Heartland” map of Bush-Republican voters in 2004 is sheer propaganda, because Bush did not win New Mexico, Iowa, Nevada, and probably Florida, had all the votes been counted, DESPITE John Kerry’s incredibly lame, throw-no-punches, take-a-fall for fellow Skull&Bones brother campaign. WHICH IS EXACTLY THE POINT: WHEN Democrat “leaders” DON’T FIGHT for rural votes, the Political Machine power becomes EVEN MORE CONCENTRATED!

    (There is another, even more dismal legacy of stolen and hijacked elections 2002 that the Democrats, press, media, and public ignore: Not only was Alabama Democrat Governor DON SIEGELMAN _robbed_ of his re-election win by Rove’s gutter-ball election-stealing tactics, but Rove, Bush, and Cheney sicked hand-picked Ken Starr-esque prosecutors on Siegelman, who now ROTS in an American prison, denied the right to communicate with press or media… and the cowardly Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid pretend not to notice!)
    (Harpers, “More Prosecutorial Misconduct in Seigelman conviction”)

    Well, there you have it. UNREPRESENTIVE voting, and disproportionate political powers, are built right into the US Constitution, especially with regards to the Senate. IT is up to the Democratic Party “leadership” to work to overcome these inherent, undemocratic tendencies…. but the inside-the-beltway “Democratic” ‘leadership’ has taken to WALLOWING in insider influence, K.-street lobbyists, and big-donor kickbacks (for billion-dollar contracts, tax-cuts, and other favors), well, like a pig in slop.
    Amazing, isn’t it, that Herblock could put all that into one little cartoon, with, what, a dozen words?
    Today, Herblock’s employer, the WASHINGTON POST, is most certainly on the side of that PIG sitting on a STUFFED BALLOT BOX with WHIP in hand… as are most of the corporate press/media, and a good number of “Democrat” elected officials as well.

  14. Jerry D. Rose said on March 6th, 2008 at 8:29am #

    Actually, lj, I think my article may not have been complicated ENOUGH, as it ignores the well-documented bias of our political system in terms rural political power; and that situation certainly warrants constitutional correction although your own analysis hedges on that, as you comment on the danger to the Republic in the “tyranny of the majority if that majority contains an increasing number of political undesirables in cities (I don’t agree with your representation of the “hordes” of immigrants to the cities; if your point is the corruption of ethnic-based politics in the cities, can’t rural areas match the corruption quite nicely?)

    When you move on to your discussion of a hoped-for remedy for the situation, you seem to lapse into a rather forlorn hope that the Democratic party might turn into the “democratic” party to challenge the rural dominance. You might think so, given the close association of the party with an urban constituency but, as you say the “belt way” Democrats are too insulated from their grassroots constituents by layers of their K street lobbyists to undertake a role that would might shake up the existing political system. That will happen when pigs fly (to mix your pig metaphor) or until Dennis Kucinich becomes President and I’m betting on the pigs right now. Isn’t it obvious that no one within our one party with two heads is going to undertake this reform? One more in a sea of indications that if we truly “hope” for “change” we are going to have to find it in an EFFECTIVE independent challenge to that entrenched and encrusted party?

  15. Lj said on March 6th, 2008 at 10:08am #

    Jerry, I’m simply pointing out that, theoretically, low population, low population-density states give AN OPPORTUNITY for a gifted politician to BUCK the BIG MONEY that is absolutely essential to win large states like California. The _possibility_ of a Dark Horse candidate to overcome this big-money hurdle is always there, witness Clinton in ’92 and Obama in ’08.
    One could write a book on the subject, indeed, I was lucky to have an “old school liberal” professor who had our class read a now out of date text, “Political Parties and Interest Groups” which explained, in a nutshell, that almost ever last major political program of the 1960s and early 1970s _came at the expense of business_, and that there was a predictable BACKLASH to this wave of regulations, rules, worker benefits, etc., a backlash we see today in the Business Roundtable (cited specifically as an example in the book), the Heritage foundation, Cato institute, AEI institute, and dozens of other lavishly funded groups and think-tanks which represent business’ point of view. One of those biggies just had their 30’th anniversary. I hate it when the “media” treats them as quasi-governmental, reliable information sources, it is either AEI or Heritage foundation that is largely funded by Exxon (and its billions).
    The simple point is, that when Economic Times are Good, “Heartland” voters fall prey to the “us vs them” identity politics narrative that is KARL ROVE’s specialty. Ironically, as I alluded above, despite rural, “heartland” states being NET federal TAX DOLLAR RECIPIENTS, the POPULAR NARRATIVE is that hard-working rural “conservative” voters SUPPORT urban “welfare Cadillac queens”!
    On an OVERALL budget this may be true – millions of city families getting some assistance equals big money – but on a PER CAPITA basis, the RURAL voters are the Welfare Queens!
    ALL that is necessary is for Democratica challengers and incumbents to OVERCOME the “Conventional Wisdom” narrative, that is so entrenched in the big, major (corporate) media.
    Almost EVERYTHING that we value as Americans – except the abilit of the super-wealthy to lord it over the world from their plantation estates – is the result of 100 years of liberal, Democratic PROGESS. Women’s vote, minority votes, 40 hour work week, abolition of child labor, Wall St. oversight, protection for bank accounts, CDC, public education, and federal dollars $$ for college and advanced degrees and research… Democratic candidates will advocate for this program or that program, but you rarely hear anyone speaking up for the entire 100 years of progressive progress that defines America today!

    Here’s two other rock-bottom, solid examples: When Righties and “Conservatives” say they “HATE BIG GOVERNMENT SPENDING” they are lying through their teeth. PUBLIC ROADS and highways – SOCIALIZED big government spending – are not only essential to our American way of life, they DEFINE our American automotive culture! ENTIRE conservative industries are ENTIRELY DEPENDENT on the SOCIALIZED government spending of our roads and highways, from the trucking industry to the oil industry to the ag industry, to real-estate, construction, highway construction, and even home industry. These are extremely “conservative”, hate regulation industries, but without SOCIALIZED roads and highways, our suburban communities (and city consumption) would be quite impossible.
    To distill all the above to one sentence, Ronald Reagan said “Government is not part of the solution.. government IS the problem!”
    This was sheer bunk! Not only was Reagan’s TV employer (GE Theater) a beneficiary of an entire industry CREATED by BIG GOVERNMENT SPENDING which developed the jet engine,
    but as Harry Truman pointed out in the movie “Truman”, rural farmers needed federal and state roads to get their crops to markets.
    Reagan said “government is not part of the solution, it IS THE PROBLEM?”
    – Mr. Reagan, try telling that to a Missouri farmer who was going bankrupt, crops rotting in the fields, because the dirt roads were too muddy to get them to market!
    ALL Democrats have to do to overcome the inherent inequality in the US Constitution and other state and local governments, and the inherent advantage of big money over “the little people” is challenge the “CW” narrative, and COMMUNICATE with voters that it is in their best interest to oppose the big money interests.
    IF Tom Paine and the patriots could launch a revolution in 1776 with little more than pamphlets, passion, and a declaration of rebellion, against the dominant empire of the day, it shouldn’t be too hard for today’s American voters and leaders given all the advantages of 200 yearsof (mostly increasing) democratic government ?

  16. Max Shields said on March 6th, 2008 at 8:17pm #


    My point was that the system is so fowl that it goes beyond superdelegates or even the voting machines, those they are all pieces of the problem.

    Write in voting is fine, and many do, but you do not build an alternative by people writing in everybody from Santa Claus to Alfred E. Neumann.

    And while the machines and counting are certainly problematic it has little to do with fundamental choice and more to do with the ultra right vs the right winning the election – aka on of two halves of the war-imperialist-party.

    There are structural and systemic issues, not least of which is money and the powers that have been running the show for the better part of a century. Our foreign policy is not an American (as in citizen) policy. It has a continuity that runs through administrations regardless of party labels.

    We do not reside in a nation that has true represenative government. Whether its the outsider (Nader, et al) or inside/outsider (Kucinich or Paul), they are marginalized into comic figures, reviled by the corporate press in the same way as see only Israeli deaths, when literally thousands of Palestinians suffer and are brutally bombed daily and never shown on the tube. That propaganda machine is the enemy, not superdelegates. Who really cares whether its Hillary or Obama (other than those who see only the most superficial in their “political leaders”). Put another way, Obama, Hillary, McCain are all true blue imperialists; everything else is splitting personality hairs.

    So, what’s the answer, Jerry? Collapse. The laws of nature will rule and create a dust and rubble outcome. The real question is will we be ready to provide progressive solutions that are beyond the pale of today’s political party games?

  17. Mark Konrad said on March 7th, 2008 at 2:57pm #


    My original point was a serious popular movement supporting a person completely ignored and perhaps reviled in the media need not be precluded from the process.

    Let’s say you and me and a couple hundred thousand of our friends decide that Dennis Kucinich is our guy.

    As long as we’re not registered in one of the eight states listed above we can all vote for him. It may very well be an excerise in futility and may be purely symbolic, but nevertheless I’m casting my vote for the candidate I like. My other option is to vote for the Establishment Party official nominee who is someone I like less than Kucinich. That’s not sufficient motivation to get me up off the couch and into the car to go vote. Many millions of eligible voters do not vote precisely for that reason. Why bother with the fair amount of inconvenience to drive down to the voting place and cast a vote for the “lesser of two evils.” I’d rather stay home and practice my Classical Persian or play cards or something with my wife.

    Of course there will be numbskulls who write-in ridiculous names, but I can’t imagine there would be many people who would go to all the trouble. The write-in option is legally recogonized in most states and we we pay taxes to fund the election process. If the authorities need to hire extra people to count the write-in votes, so be it. That’s part of the cost of doing business as they say in the private sector. If the state government represents that write-in votes are legal then I’ll take advantage of that option whether it may inconvenience them or not.