A commonplace of german politics

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How do we vote?

8 November, 2008 (15:40) | elections, federal states, political trade | By: Aerar

This article knowingly foregoing on statistics and numbers and instead naming opinions and impressions. It starts with the fact that Andrea Ypsilanti resigned (german) from the leading candidacy in the most probably coming reelections in Hessen.

This is not surprising news as the reputation of Ms. Ypsilanti has been massively damaged within the last months. Many people consider her unreasonable (trying a very lean minority cabinet), unreliable (breach of promise concerning a coalition with “Die Linke”), dictatorial (social handling of Dagmar Metzger) and unadept (ousting Jürgen Walter) to name just some of the negative associations. This of course would be a drawback in the relections. Very different the performance of Barack Obama in the USA who managed to give himself a positive image of openness and recommencement which overpowered the “negative” attributes such as possible lack of experience compared to John McCain and his color (still an argument for many electors).

The question is what exactly does a candidate vote for when he goes to the ballot-box? Will he choose a candidate (his expertise, reliability and his appearance), the candidate’s party (it’s tradition, members and values) or a party program (the recent position stated of party and/or candidate)? I do not know the answer myself and I am not giving a valuation how it should be.

But I assume, the average elector invests very little time in political questions of priciple compared to polically interested peole or even professional politicians. So it is likely the visible options like candidate and party will have a strong influence on him.