I have to say that I am completely opposed to sacrificing one’s ideals for the sake of the electibility of the candidate. To me that means that what you believe is up for sale to the highest bidder, where the commodity of exchange is vote-getting ablility.
I look at it like this: You believe certain things about important political issues, and, if you are consistent(1) in your application of reason to all aspects of your life, you have good supporting arguments for what you believe. Of the available candidates, A is in agreement with 90% of your values, while B is in agreement with 50%. But B stands a greater chance of being elected than does A.(2) Remember that whoever is elected is going to try to implement their entire platform, even the parts you don’t like, because every candidate believes that the voters endorsed their complete agenda.(3) That means, by voting for B, you are happy to endorse a platform with important components directly opposed to what you believe. For example, Candidate B may be in favor of protecting the rights of every kind of family, but believes democracy can be imposed at the point of a bayonet. When Candidate B wins, then President B will set up polices to send troops to perceived hot spots and topple existing regimes. Why? Because you told B that’s what you wanted by voting for B.
(1) I recognize that consistency may not be a virtue: “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds,” says Emerson.
(2) If someone can show me tools for correctly determining electibility, I’d love to see it, then I’d teach my candidates to meet the criteria of electibility and we’d finally have a free Republic.
(3) If nothing else, most voters want their candidate to be consistent and to live up to their promises. You may have voted for B because B agreed with the first half of your list, but someone else (Voter Q) may have voted for B because B agreed with the first half of Voter Q’s list. If President B now comes along and says, “I’ve changed my mind and I’m adjusting my policies to match what Voter Q wanted!” then where are you?
Expanding on note 3: There is the option of ranking one’s issues, where a candidate must be in agreement with certain issues even to be considered. I have applied this to the entire spectrum of candidates and thereby eliminated them all, so this season I am voting for “NOTA.”