"So, Red, who'd you vote for last week? The guy who says he's more for smaller government than the other guy is? Or the guy who says the other guy is only pretending he's a real smaller-government guy?"
"Dang it all, Cope. Truth is, I ended up not voting for anyone (whimper whimper)."
"Ooooooh, Red. I'm sorry. And you were so excited about the closed primary, weren't you? How, for the first time, you could vote along with nothing but pure, non-Muggle Republicans. So what happened? Did you forget?"
"Hecks no, I di'n't forget (snort snort). What happened was, when I walked in, the first lady I runs into wants t' know if I'd care to afflixiate as a 'Publican or a Demercrat, and I got all het-up in my brain and says to her, 'Whar's the shoot agin yoose go t' sposhin' me a Demercrat!' Wull, I think the only word she understood out o' that was 'Demercrat,' so they handed me a ballot wit' nothin' but Demercratses names on it. Wull gull durnit, I ain't never voted for no Demercrat in my life ... exceptin' for maybe that time I voted for ol' Lyndon LaRouche ... and I tweren't about to start!"
"Why didn't you just ask to change your ballot?"
"I did, I did! When I finds out I gots me a Demercrat one, I get real discomboobalated, if you know whats I mean. So I go back and says, 'Gash a'Moshes! Airn't no wherfin' whatsit ah'll e'er splot up this'n votin' Demercrat!' Wull I'll be danged if this old gal sitting at the far end o' the table doesn't take that ballot out o' my hands and drop it in a box. Then she says out real loud like, "Red T. LaRose has voted.' I was so dang mad I coulda spit up Drano, so I thought the best thing for me t' do would be t' get my fanny outta there before I said somethin' that'd get me in trouble. And the upshot is, I didn't get t' vote for nobody (harumph harumph)."
"Gee, that's a shame, for sure. I imagine you're thanking your Republican pals for screwing this up, right?"
"What you mean?"
"Think about it, Red. If the rabid needle-nosed weasels who are running the Idaho GOP these days hadn't thrown their little pissy fit about closing their side of the primaries to everyone but registered Republicans, none of your trouble voting would have happened, right? It would have been like before, where the ballot would have all the candidates on it and you could choose in private which party you wanted to vote for."
"You always got t' be blaming ever'thing on 'Publicans, Cope! I'll bet there's plenty o' places where Demercrats closed up their primaries, too (huff huff)!"
"All I know is, here in Idaho, it's the Republicans rigging the system. And have you noticed how the more Republicans mess around with how we vote, the less people end up voting? That's a fact. Is that your idea of how democracy ought to work, Red ... if you're having trouble getting your way, just screw other people out of their vote?"
"Cope, you're just mad 'cause there's never enough Demercrats on a ballot to need a primary 'lection. I'll bet you didn't even go vote 'cause there weren't nobody to choose betwixt (chuckle chuckle)."
"Actually, I did go vote. You're right about not having any contested Democrat races in my district, but I voted anyway."
"Oh yeah? So why'd you do that. T' make sure the only guy running was agonna win (yuk yuk)?"
"No. I voted Republican."
"Whaaaaaaaaa'! You cain't do that! You gotta be a registered 'Publican to do that! You ain't no registered 'Publican (puff puff)!"
"I am now. They asked me which party I'm affiliated with, and I said, 'Republican ... for this election, at least. Next primary season, we'll see what comes up.' They looked at me a little funny, but they marked me down as a Republican and handed me a ballot."
"You cheater, you! You gull durned cheater (bitch bitch)!"
"I didn't cheat, Red. I voted and that's not cheating. Ever. Not as long as you do it just once per election."
"But that's 'zactly why them leaders o' mine ... what you call them rabid needle-nosed weasels ... took the state t' court for, Cope! T' stop fellers like you from coming over and slopping up our side with them RINO moderators and compromistists what ain't true t' the Holy 'Publican code. How couldja do it, Cope? How couldja jigger up our new rules (moan moan)?"
"Because I can. Because there's nothing those party leaders of yours can do to stop me, not as long as I'm willing to stoop so low as to call myself a Republican. And happily, my party leaders are committed to keeping their primary open to every one. Moderates, independents, Libertarians ... whatever. That's because we Democrats don't expect ideological purity, Red. We just expect democracy."
"But you gone and corrupitated our election! Now hows we know if some guy di'n't win because o' your stinkin' vote (grumble grumble)?"
"You don't have to worry about that. I don't know what I'll do in future primaries, but this time, I did a write-in for every office. Every last one. And I didn't just make up some nonsense candidate either. I wrote in what I truly believe, in both my mind and my heart, is best for my district and Idaho."
"Yeah? So who'd you write in (huh huh)?"
"'None of the above.' Then I went home and took a hot shower."