by Chad Rubel
John Edwards got 7 percent of the vote last night in West Virginia. This from a candidate that left the race before Super Tuesday.
Good for democracy - selecting a candidate that you want to be president, even if they are out of the race. And given that West Virginia was in the spotlight for the first time since probably 1960, and 7 percent still voted for someone other than Obama or Clinton.
We used to have people who went to the polls in the primary, held their nose, and picked from the people still in the race. And this year, we have better candidates still in the race than we've had in other years. Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama of 2008 versus John Kerry of 2004 or Michael Dukakis of 1988?
And this isn't just happening on the Democratic side. John McCain, as the presumptive Republican nominee, got 77% in Indiana, 74% in North Carolina, and 73% in Pennsylvania. This means that about a quarter of the Republicans STILL didn't vote for McCain.
Ron Paul got 16% in Pennsylvania and Mike Huckabee had 12% in Indiana. And while McCain won a bunch of states in the winner-take-all mentality, in many of those states, he never did win at least 50% of the vote.
I wouldn't say it's a reflection of Obama, Clinton, and McCain, but more like voters are standing up for themselves and making their voices heard. Quite frankly, a lot of why government isn't responsive to the needs of its citizens is the mentality that people are sheep. When people stand up and declare they aren't sheep, politicians will start working harder to make this country better.
The Edwards supporters in West Virginia stood up against all odds, and gave their support to their candidate. And democracy is much better off for it.