“I’m just gonna vote for the lesser of two evils.”
I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve heard that phrase from evangelical Christians in recent weeks. Usually this has been in the context of Mitt Romney and John McCain. There’s a great problem in the statement, and it has little to do with McCain or Romney. Compare this ethic of adopting the “lesser of two evils” with the ethic presented us by the Apostle Paul:
Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. [Romans 12:9, ESV]
Abstain from every form of evil. [1 Thessalonians 5:22, ESV]
Christians are not called to do evil, but good. How then does this work out in such seemingly impossible situations as the voting booth? The simple answer is to do good by your vote. If at any point a Christian determines he is doing evil, he should refrain.
In the midst of difficult dilemmas, there may indeed be a “good” choice after all. It would be, for example, a good action to use deadly violence against a terrorist who is about to shoot up a shopping mall. The same thinking can be applied to Just War Theory, choosing from a cholesterol-laden menu, and yes, even the voting booth.
So, if you’re voting, don’t do evil.
If you’ve already voted, don’t vote again.