Vote the Party Not the Man

Over at Mischiefs of Faction there is a post by political sciewntist Hans Noel explaining why The person is not more important than the party. Noel is responding to a moderate Republican so fed up with Mitt Romney that he is considering crossing party lines in his presidential vote. Don’t do it, says Noel — the nominee isn’t so important, but the party is:

Whoever is at the top of the ticket matters a lot, sure, but you can be sure that the rest of the administration will be filled with people from the same party. A party is a coalition. Just as finding the “real Romney” is a fool’s errand, so is insisting that the personality at the top of the ticket be the most important thing you care about. You have a choice in November between two broad coalitions. One is left-leaning and will pay some attention to progressives but will also bring in moderates of various stripes. The other is right-leaning and will be responsive to the Tea Party and to moderate Republicans. That’s your choice in November. It’s so true that if some wizard blinked and Obama was the Republican candidate and Romney the Democratic candidate, I would switch my vote to stay with my party.

So if you are wobbly on Romney, vote Republican anyway. You get still get Josh Bolton, Eliot Abrams, Carly Fiorina, and Rick Santorum.

About Maurice T. Cunningham

Maurice T. Cunningham is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Massachusetts at Boston. He teaches courses in American government including Massachusetts Politics, The American Presidency, Catholics in Political Life, The Political Thought of Abraham Lincoln, American Political Thought, and Public Policy. His book Maximization, Whatever the Cost: Race, Redistricting and the Department of Justice examines the role of the DOJ in requiring states to maximize minority voting districts in the Nineties. He has published articles dealing with the role of the Catholic Church in Massachusetts politics and on party politics in the state. His research interests focus upon the changing political culture of Massachusetts.
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One Response to Vote the Party Not the Man

  1. The ironies of downplaying partisanship in a partisan election are rich and numerous. While it’s not difficult to see how de-emphasizing party identity and philosophy encourages the “politics of personal destruction,” I have found it difficult to explain the negative consequences of the inverse phenomena, which I call the “politics of personal construction.”

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