Voter Guides: Protest Votes and Cheat Sheets

Tired of the two-party system but unsure about casting a protest vote? WebActive‘s pragmatic analysis helps you make your vote count either way. They cast a critical eye over Clinton’s first-term performance, endorsing him for president, but encouraging a vote for Nader in states where Clinton is ahead (or behind) by a large margin. An interactive map shows which category your state falls into.

In the more hotly contested state and local races, the problem for many voters may be a surplus, not a dearth, of choices. If you don’t have the entire weekend to devote to deciphering your ballot pamphlet, you might want to consult a cheat-sheet: the endorsement lists and scorecards put out by your favorite advocacy groups. For example:

  • The ACLU rates all members of Congress with a scorecard showing how they voted on key civil liberties issues, including Internet censorship, school vouchers, national ID cards, wiretapping, Immigration, HIV in the military, and English Only.

  • Both the League of Conservation Voters and the Sierra Club endorse candidates based on their environmental track record.

  • NOW pinpoints key races for women to watch and endorses candidates based on their support for feminist issues.

  • The Human Rights Campaign scores the 104th Congress on issues of concern to gay and lesbian Americans. [Watch out for the 157 members of the House and 14 members of the Senate who scored zero percent.]

And don’t forget to check your local alternative weekly for comprehensive coverage of state and district races.