George H.W. Bush, former Republican president of the United States, is going to vote for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, according to former Maryland lieutenant governor Kathleen Kennedy, on Sept. 20.
Kennedy originally uploaded a photo to Facebook announcing the former president’s potentially private prospects for America’s new president, with the caption: “The [former] President told me he’s voting for Hillary!”
A few hours later, the post had gone viral.
Perhaps, what is strangest of all is the concept of Bush, a Republican voting for a Democrat, being shocking news.
America has consistently seen rigid partisanship in its political parties, and this same partisanship is what consistently keeps every branch of our government from progress. This problem is so clearly evident in every facet of the American government and yet the people treat it as completely normal.
The idea of bipartisanship should not be seen as something newsworthy. It should be common practice and it’s what actually gets work accomplished between political parties. Our nation has already seen government shutdowns and hostage situations where public functionality is at stake, all thanks to partisanship. Gridlock cannot be accepted anymore.
Bush has a right to vote however he wants as an American citizen and any pressure on him to cast his vote based on party lines is entirely undemocratic.
This stance is a double-edged sword, however.
While Bush has the right to vote however he wants, all American people do as well. While some of the ex-Presidents have made their voting choice clear, this is an unfair attempt at swaying public votes. While some may question Trump’s viability as a candidate, there are people who legitimately believe he is the best choice for the Oval Office. They formed this opinion on their own, as opposed to having someone else tell them who the best option is.
If Americans vote simply based on who else is voting for a candidate, they’re not voting for what they actually believe in. Even if the ex-Presidents are endorsing Clinton because they believe she is the best fit for a position they previously held, that is still opinion.
The take-away here: there is going to be a massive amount of pressure from political parties on who to vote for in November and sometimes this pressure will involve something as shallow as a celebrity endorsement to earn votes. A celebrity endorsement does not control American’s conscience.
In November, the only person who will be in the voting booth is you and the only person who ever has to know your choice for the presidency is yourself.