Note: This “Moore to the Point” commentary aired on NewsTalkSTL on Monday, November 7th. Audio included below.
There’s a running political joke about how every election is “the most important of our lifetime.” As many rightly note, repeating that each election cycle rather pulls its punch — it starts to lose meaning.
Lately, the popular lefty slogan is that “Democracy is on the ballot” this coming Tuesday. Wow. Democracy, you say? That sounds…heavy! And so very significant. While many on the right roll their eyes over this apparent hyperbole, I see it differently: In my view, democracy is always on the ballot. It’s inextricably woven into the fabric of our electoral system.
No, the United States is not “a democracy” – not in the pure sense — and thank Heaven for that! It’s a constitutional republic or a representative democracy. It’s an amazing amalgam of core principles designed to preserve a “government of the people, by the people, for the people.” Which is no easy feat – particularly given that people – i.e., fallible humans – are involved.
But each and every time we vote, we’re choosing – which candidate (or measure) will best uphold those core principles – including democracy? Which one will espouse – and champion – the rights and freedoms secured by our Constitution? From presidential elections all the way down to city councils and school boards, when we vote, we are exercising (and hopefully preserving) democracy.