Independent Convention

August 19, 2008

As we watch with bated breath (or not), the proceedings leading to the Republican or Democratic Conventions, I paused to give thought to those Independents among us. Long perceived as a minority group with possible make-or-break power in any given presidential election, according to, Independents actually make up 40 percent of the electorate. Many point to the impact they had on the Obama campaign, saying they tipped the scales in his favor during the primaries, and others claim they helped push McCain to the forefront of the Republican candidates.

With so much power in our country at this time, it’s time for an Independent Convention. Why should Independents get away without having to give money to an event costing millions every four years; without reading, watching, or listening to a nauseating number of analysts predicting outcomes of each convention; without bragging rights for those few who actually get to be a delegate and think they have any control over the vote they actually cast?

My mind started spinning with all kinds of ideas and questions. What would the logo look like? What cities would be big enough to hold it? How long should it last? Who would get voting rights, what speakers would be chosen, what vice presidential candidates would be up for nomination, what spouse would be trotted out for inspection, who would make sure Roberts Rules would be followed, what communication disaster plan would be developed in case the media caught wind of a backroom deal, what hotels would be chosen for the delegates, what sponsors obtained to feed, transport and … entertain … the delegates? And oh no — WHO WOULD PRINT THE BADGES??

Gazing into the mirror, panic reflected in my eyes, I realized the solution was staring me in the face. Independent Convention, you fool! Simple answers really. The convention would be held in my favorite pub, chosen friends in attendance, speakers from those inspired to raise their glass, one person-one vote, no rules followed, and no disaster plans written — but a blog would be posted the next day (or maybe even a live blog during). Sponsors would be obtained from anyone willing to share the next round and no badges necessary. Are you an Independent? What would your convention look like?

In the meantime, one thing I hope everyone has in common — the desire to get out and vote. Don’t let any group sway you, and don’t think not voting is a vote against someone or everyone. For issues affecting women and girls, check out AAUW’s public policy pages on our website, and see what you can do to help advocate for the real need to educate oneself and get out to vote.

Christy Jones, CAE By:   |   August 19, 2008


  1. Krys Wulff says:

    I propose a very “independent” convention. As the moniker implies we should be independent of all party constraints. So let’s initiate a VIRTUAL INDEPENDENT CONVENTION!!! No boxes, no banners, no badges. Just independent inquiring minds connecting in a virtual environment wherever and whenever. The world is our oyster, so to speak!

    AAUW would be a perfect venue for a virtual convention with its long standing get out the vote efforts. There is no better time and no greater need than now that we encourage people to think independently and make their voices heard at the polls.

    Carpe diem!

  2. Cody Judy says:

    Please visit my web site.

    Like many I too have seen the Democrats reaching more then ever, and the Republicans reaching for Independents. The painful truth is when a party is reaching they are also abandoning. In reaching we see the partys literally promising everything to everyone dooming themselves.

    With experience and legislation that is wrong, how is McCain a choice? With socialism of Obama the taxes are going to be coming to pay for it all, in the name of “Keeping The Change Promise”.

    My concern is our Liberty and Independence being sold down the road, which will literally wreck the United States as our freedoms and rights are dis-connected. The plan of the opposition of our Liberty and Independence was to destroy our U.S. military, destroy the U.S. Constitution, and destroy the U.S. Economy which has literally almost been done.

    We have got to rally together and ignore the desperation of Democrats and Republicans stating they would serve us better next… we can serve ourselves. Thank You.

    Cody Judy
    U.S. President 2008
    We Can Do This Campaign

  3. christyjones christyjones says:

    Independent thought certainly provides interesting viewpoints.

  4. Gwen says:

    Hi Christy,

    Nice post. While we’re not as big as the Democrats and Republicans (as a movement – in numbers, as you pointed out, it’s becoming the case that there are more indies than Dems and Republicans), independent activists have been holding caucuses throughout August and making modest steps in building infrastructure locally. Would love to tell you more about some of what that looks like. Email me and let’s be in touch.


  5. Caitlin says:

    Says you should move to Canada with your socialist points of view!!

  6. REPUBLICAN says:

    You’ll never win…stop trying

  7. christyjones christyjones says:

    Sometimes, I have to admit, I puzzle at certain comments to blog posts. I ask myself, did they understand the post? Get the humor? Read into it something never intended?

    No matter, the fact that someone “stopped by”, took the time to read someone else’s thoughts and paused long enough to comment is a good thing. It reminds us of how many differing viewpoints there are and why education is so crucial.

    If you haven’t recently, take an extra moment and check out AAUW’s Public Policy “Issues Advocacy” page, And don’t forget to cast your vote in November for the candidate of your choice.

Join the Conversation

You must be logged in to post a comment.