Bill Wayne's Political Pages - The Gadfly
Gadfly 64
Submitted to the Warrensburg Gazette for October 12, 2000

The Gadfly is a series of letters offering commentary on local issues and published in the Warrensburg Gazette.

Dear Editor

Getting tired of political commercials? Are you offended by their pandering, misleading claims and downright lies? Are you so confused or turned off that youíve considered not even voting in those races? If so, do I have a deal for you! Itís called voting for a third party candidate.

Actually, in Missouri youíll find five third parties on the ballot, representing about every niche in the political spectrum. Missouri voters disgruntled with the republicrats can choose from among Libertarian (my personal choice), Reform, Natural Law, Constitution, & Green parties. Most of these parties have very distinguishable political philosophies, so you canít say that theyíre all the same.

Now, some people say, ďif you vote for a third party, youíll waste your vote.Ē By that logic, the 50-plus percent of the people who didnít vote for Bill Clinton in 1992 & 96 wasted their votes. The people who voted for Fremont & the brand-new Republican Party in 1856 wasted their votes, even though that set the stage for Lincolnís election in 1860.

So, whatís positive about voting for a third party? To start with, youíre telling the Ďmajorí parties that you donít like their methods of campaigning or their virtually indistinguishable positions on some issue important to you. If you agree with the political philosophy of one of the third parties, youíre helping move the Ďmajorí parties that direction. Youíre helping preserve ballot access for the third parties, thereby helping advance whatever voice the big-city media lets them have. You can walk away from the polls with your head high, knowing that you voted your principles instead of for the Ďlesser of two evils.í

For those of us who oppose zoning but donít want to vote for either Talent or Holden, thereís another advantage to voting for a third party rather than sitting out the race for Governor. The number of votes cast for all candidates for Governor in Johnson county will determine the number of signatures the pro-zoning people would have to get to revive the issue.

Hereís a list of our third parties (in alphabetical order by Presidential candidate) & an internet reference to find out more about each. Iíve used the state reference where possible: