When most people think of independent voters they think of people who are undecided, wavering, and unsure of what they believe. Marcia Ford’s book, We the Purple seeks to dispel this notion and to support and advocate for Christians being independent voters.
Despite being inclined to agree with Ford, I think she did an excellent job of viewing independent voters from both a Republican and Democrat side. And, she does not shy away from the key issues for many Christians and how she sees them as an independent voter.
I also love that she is just an everyday person with little to no ties to Washington or any lobbyist group. Ford is just one Christian woman who has decided to write a book on a political movement that makes sense for her. If you want to understand the changes in politics today…read the book.
I enjoyed the book enough to want to dive into some of the subjects that Ford brings up in her. It is not my goal to push her views or my thoughts so that you might agree with me or her. I would much prefer this be informative, conversation starting, and community building. My hope and prayer is that we can work through the difficulty that faith and politics is.
I first want to look at Ford’s introduction to independent voters.
- Republicans and Democrats between 60% to 65% of US voters. That leaves 35% to 40% of voters as neither, which is essentially independent. It also makes independents as powerful or more powerful than either major US party.
- Getting rid of partisanship leads to lively debates, more creative problem solving, freedom for candidates to speak their mind instead of conforming to party rules, and a vibrant field of candidates.
What are some of the key issues to independent voters:
- Ballot access- If you are not a Republican or Democrat it is very difficult to get on the ballot and the difficulty is that the laws very immensely from state to state. In Georgia you need 200k signatures of registered voters to get on the ballot. They say it costs $1 a signature, and in Georgia no independent or minor party candidate has qualified to run for a congressional district since 1942.
- Term Limits- Ever heard of a lifetime politician? Has anyone in their right mind ever tried to run against them? If we are going to impose term limits on the Presidency, then it would make sense to do so for other local and national offices.
- Campaign Finance Reform- Ford really talks up John McCain here. He has been extremely influential within campaign finance reform. So for those of you who think Ford is really just a confused Democrat (what some call independents), I think she is pretty fond of McCain.
- Redistricting- This is essentially the feud between Democrats and Republicans on how district lines should be drawn. They often trade back and forth between what they view as favorable lines.
- What are Independents- Different states call independents on the ballot “unaffiliated” “no party” “I decline to state my party” “not a member of a party” “I do not wish to enroll in a party”
- Primaries- Taxpayers pay for a primary, yet in some states it is impossible for an independent to vote in a primary.
Any of these resonate with you?