Look. We Get it.

The world is spinning out of control around us and we’re faced yet again with the monumental task of cutting through the chaos to choose our country’s leader for the next four years…

And a lot of people aren’t ready. A lot of people have big questions. A lot of people need to see action from candidates that matches the values and convictions that we strive to live with … that our country should strive to embody. A lot of people need to see the names on the ballot walking the walk instead of talking the talk.

Voters from every corner of Wisconsin will be at the polls on Tuesday, April 2. We fought for fair maps so that each and every one of us could realize the power of our vote, the power of our voice, and the power of our communities to choose our leaders. So as you’re deciding what to do when that pen is in your hand, it’s important to know your options. Your voice is your voice and it should be heard!

How Presidential Preference Votes work in Wisconsin

The rules on the ballot are straightforward:

  • You may vote for only ONE candidate.
  • You may vote in only ONE party.
    • Within the party you chose, you will have ONE of three choices:
      • Vote for a person whose name is on the ballot in the party you chose.
      • Vote for an uninstructed delegation Wisconsin to the national convention of the party you chose.
      • Write in the name of another person to become the presidential candidate of the party you have chosen.

We feel like voting for a person whose name is on the ballot and writing in the name of someone else are options a lot of people know about … but what’s this uninstructed delegation?

Uninstructed Delegation

The uninstructed delegation choice allows voters to authorize discretion to the national convention delegates on behalf of the voters of Wisconsin. The benefit of the uninstructed delegate is threefold: it allows voters to still have a choice in the nomination process, it allows some control over the nomination process if authorized, and it draws a palatable balance between state law and party rule.

Simply put: A vote for an uninstructed delegate is your way of saying you are not committed to any single candidate, but are looking to support the choice of Wisconsin’s delegates, who are influenced by the rest of the state’s popular vote.

Why are people voting uninstructed this year?

As we face this Presidential election, we’re grappling with the realities of being conflicted voters at an uncomfortable crossroads. 

Voting uninstructed, quite frankly, is not about stopping one candidate or helping another. It’s about using every tool available to us as voters to send a clear message. And right here, right now, for a lot of people that message is demanding a permanent ceasefire and stopping a genocide.

Photo: Sophie Carson / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

We’re not here to tell you HOW to vote in the Presidential Preference on April 2. But we are here to make sure you know your voice needs to be heard, and if you are one of those voters wanting to vote for peace instead of a person, for a permanent ceasefire instead of a party platform, for a message to the Biden Administration that we must change course now before you can vote for them in November … then here is your option.

Forward Together

As we focus on local issues on April ballots across Northwestern Wisconsin, we know that democracy and our communities are strongest when we all show up. The school board candidates and library funding referendums in your cities need you with that pen in your hand on April 2. 

The last thing we want is the Presidential Preference to be the reason anyone chooses not to vote. There is no doubt or confusion as to the fact that Donald Trump’s candidacy is a great threat to our communities (the greatest, some would say). So, whether you vote for Joe Biden or vote Uninstructed, the important thing is to vote your conscience in April and vote for the best candidate in November. 

And remember, with these borrowed words of wisdom, “Everything we do before November 5 and everything we do after is how we put our faith, our values, and our vision for the future into action.”