A reader writes:

I am 24 years-old and have been reading your blog since I was a freshman in college. I majored in Finance, was in the College Republican group, campaigned for George Bush, my dad owns a successful small business, I am evangelical, and I live in Colorado, a swing state. All of this would seem to bode well for the Republican Party easily capturing my vote this year, especially in a year where it may be more necessary than others.

However, last night while I watched the debate I decided to not vote in the presidential election this year. I know this may sound like a ridiculous forfeit of a hard-earned American right, but I honestly cannot bring myself to vote for either candidate. There has been such a pattern of disappointment coming out of the Republican Party in the last several years that has all recently come to a head for me, and become consuming enough that I can no longer ignore it and simply check the correct box.

Balking on the environment, denying basic human rights to our prisoners in the war on terror, becoming more concerned with government telling you what you can or cannot do in your bedroom than, you know, keeping government small, all contributed to this new apathy in me. But I think the first moment that I ever squared with it was when McCain announced Palin as his VP candidate. My thought at the time was, “this sure will mobilize the base, but it is not a base I want anything to do with.” The succeeding month has only proved this initial notion terribly correct.

My only hope, I suppose, is that as the Republican Party is cast into the political wilderness in a few weeks they do some serious soul-searching and find people like me who are already there.

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