Election day, 2016

In May, when a plurality of the GOP defiled the party by nominating Donald Trump, I walked out and said that I would not vote for him. Today, I did not vote for him.

Instead, I stood in line for thirty minutes and voted for Carly Fiorina. Until last week, my intention had been to vote for Evan McMullin, but I discovered that my write-in ballot for either of them will not be counted; I do not mean that it will not count, mind you, but that it literally will not be counted. (See Ind. Code § 3-12-1-1.7(a)(1).) By voting for McMullin—though he is a good, brave, and honorable man—I would not be adding to a count of McMullin votes that can then be waved as proof that we weren’t all insane, as I had intended, or to legitimize his election by the electoral college in the public mind. The instrumental value of my vote is, in this case, literally zero.

But a vote has a moral value, too. Fiorina was my first choice; it befits that she be my last choice. I didn’t get to vote for her during the primaries. I did my part and voted for Cruz in order to stop Trump. My vote in May could have but didn’t stop Trump winning Indiana’s primary, but nothing I do with it today will stop him from winning Indiana’s votes in the electoral college. That being so, I will take the opportunity to finally vote for the person whom I actually wanted to be President—the person whom we should have nominated, and who, had she been nominated, would undoubtedly been our next President. (A good one, too, I think.)

Tomorrow evening, America will have elected a person for whom I did not vote. If my brethren wish to surrender the highest office in the land to either a crook or a chintzy charlatan, that’s their business. But they will not make of me an accomplice to that act.