Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Some Final Thoughts on This Election Day

I just read a piece in the New York Times which said that the election with the largest voter turnout happened 100 years ago, on November 3, 1908 when 66% of the registered voters showed up at the polls and elected Ohioan, William Howard Taft, the Republican candidate, as President.

Of course, women could not vote in that election. Today will be the 23rd time that women of the United States will have voted in a Presidential Election. November 2, 1920 was the first election in which women could exercise their right to vote. This was a mere 72 years after the birth of the women’s suffrage movement took place in Seneca Falls, New York at the first women's rights convention. Most of the women at that convention would not live to see their dreams of women’s suffrage realized.

As much as I am pulling for my candidate to win, I think the most important factor in today's election is the sanctity of the process – that no eligible voter’s vote be denied, nor left uncounted.

There are mountains of lawyers ready to pounce in my home state of Ohio with charges of voter fraud already floating like bits of pollen in the air. I have heard that there are legions of lawyers representing both political parties stationed in other swing states ready to do battle.

Perhaps it is naïve to believe that the integrity of the process matters more than the outcome of the election. But it is this belief that is at the core of what it means to be an American – one person, one vote. Is it too much to hope that those who would lead and their supporters remember this concept as this election season comes to a close?

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