[Marxism] Fwd: Who Would You Vote for in 1840? And Who Will You Vote for on Nov. 8? | New Politics

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Oct 27 19:09:36 MDT 2016

Imagine that it is 1840 and someone approaches you on the street and 
hands you a flyer for James G. Birney, the presidential candidate of the 
new Liberty Party. The flyer says that the Liberty Party opposes 
slavery. It is the only party that does.

The Democrats and the Whigs--the two parties of the two-party system of 
that time--supported slavery, not to the same degree perhaps, but 
neither party opposed slavery. The Liberty Party is new and small, tiny. 
It’s candidate Birney has absolutely no chance to win the election. But 
he stands opposed to slavery. Who will you vote for on voting day in 1840?

Will you argue that voting for the Liberty Party would be wasting your 
vote, and that instead you would vote for the Whig or Democratic 
parties, both of which accepted slavery?

Of course, if you vote for the Liberty Party, the Whigs or the Democrats 
will take power. They will appoint the Supreme Court. So what will you 
do? Vote the Whig Party because it is perhaps a little less a slave 
party than the Democrats?


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