I voted for Gore.
Here are the main reasons:
- On balance, it seems more likely than not that the Republicans will retain both houses of Congress. As they say in sports, you gotta play the percentages. Plus, my hope is for a President Gore and a GOP Congress–so playing the percentages also allowed me to vote my hopes.
- Hillary is likely to win. So I want Gore in the White House for the Hillary-containing reasons outlined earlier.
- I thought about whether I was voting Democratic out of sheer loyalty or because supporting the party’s candidate is the price of admission to the debate on the direction of the party. But I decided it was more than that. What’s the biggest government project facing the nation in the next decade? Universal health care. I still trust the Democrats more on this issue. For example, I’d rather start with a big, universal, expensive system (like Medicare) and make it more efficient than start with an efficient but stratified competitive system and try to make it less unequal. I’m open to having my mind changed by the New Paradigmers (who argue for benefits of competition over centralized control in all institutions), but that’s my default. And I’ve defaulted!
- Like many people, I don’t quite trust Bush. Come back in four years! Or better, have your brother come back!
- A secret reason to be named later.
The dreary downside: If Gore wins, we’ll have to endure four years of pompous, too-complex sermons on the ongoing need for racial preferences. And if the congressional Democrats win along with Gore, it means a constant rear-guard war to protect the 1996 welfare reform from the liberals who will try to quietly gut it.
If these things happen, what will New Democrats do? We’ll just have to win, then!