The here and now versus the hereafter

· 2004 Election

Both sides in this election have an X factor — for the Democrats it’s arguably (as has been noted elsewhere on Edgewise) the young, their fear for their futures. In particular, its their fear of an impending draft. They’re voting for their lives. Polls consistently show this group of young voters as the Kerry’s strongest supporters.
For the Republicans, it may well be religious fundamentalists, whatever their exact faith. Folks who are convinced for one reason or another that a vote for Kerry is a mortal sin. Bad news from Iraq or a weak jobs report won’t change their mind. They’re going into that booth and they’re pulling the lever for life everlasting.
Of course millions of us believe you can have it both ways. I’m voting for Kerry and, as the cliche goes, I see that vote as both good and good for me.
But needless to say, not everyone shares my particular set of values. And it all makes for an interesting subtext, come Tuesday next. Which fear will draw more votes? Faith can be an extraordinarily powerful force. But this time around, my money’s on the here and now.