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David Emery

ALERT: Facebook Hoax Misleads 'Straight Ticket' Voters

By November 6, 2012

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There are several versions of this false and misleading text proliferating via Facebook and Twitter.

Example #1:

PLEASE PAY CAREFUL ATTENTION TO THIS! In the event that you are planning to vote democrat on Nov. 6, when you go into the voting booths, DO NOT SELECT THE BUTTON "all democrats" first, because Barack Obama will be excluded from the vote. However, if we choose "Barack Obama" first, and then "all democrats, he will earn our votes. People are not being told this information, because they are trying to use every trick in the book. TELL EVERYBODY YOU KNOW THIS PLEASE RE-POST THIS, WE CAN'T LET THEM GET AWAY WITH THIS!!!!!

Example #2:

PLEASE PAY CAREFUL ATTENTION TO THIS! If you are voting party line democrat on Nov. 6, when you go into the voting booths, DO NOT SELECT THE BUTTON "all democrats/republicans" first, because your presidential choice will be excluded from the vote. (For Example: if you choose "Barack Obama" first, and then "all democrats", he will earn your votes) People are not being told this information! So be informed! VOTE!

This is bad advice. Following it, ironically, could bring about the very outcome the message purports to want to prevent. If you're voting by machine, checking off your presidential choice before selecting a straight ticket option (e.g., "All Democrats" or "All Republicans") may actually cause your first selection to become unchecked. The safer course of action is to EITHER choose the straight ticket option OR check off candidate boxes individually, not both.

Most importantly, review all of your selections to make sure they're correct before finalizing your ballot.

Read more about it:
NAACP Press Release Warning Voters About Internet Hoax
Voting Booth Hoax Spreads on Facebook
Voting Hoax: Obama Supporters Targeted?


November 8, 2012 at 1:26 pm
(1) James H. H. Lampert says:

As one who opposes the very concept of political parties, and believes that the Framers sought to keep parties in check just as fervently as they sought to keep all other sorts of factions in check, and as one who has never once voted a straight ticket (and who will cast an abstention, if necessary, to break an otherwise straight ticket, even if all the candidates I support are in the same party), I believe that “All Democrats”/”All Republicans” buttons/levers/boxes/whatever, “party column” organization of machines or paper ballots, and anything else that encourages straight-ticket voting, should be outlawed.

People should think about the votes they cast, or not cast them at all.

November 19, 2012 at 11:53 pm
(2) Dave Burton says:

How voting works varies by State.

Here in NC, after a string of Republican presidential & judicial wins, Democrats in the State Legislature changed the rules so that the Presidency is no longer included in straight-ticket votes. They also changed the judicial races to make them officially “non-partisan,” so that they aren’t included in straight-ticket voting, either.

The Democrats’ hope was that separating those races from the straight-ticket votes would insulate other Democrats from the “coattails” of Republican presidential candidates.

It worked for a while, but now Republicans have won control of the State Legislature and the governorship, despite the Democrats’ tricks.

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