When it comes to voting, our primary concern as Christians should be that we elect a candidate to government office who will fulfill God’s purpose for government. And what is that purpose? Justice: rewarding good and punishing evil (Rom 13:1-4). While it’s true that no government, political party, or political candidate fulfills this purpose perfectly, it’s also true that they don’t fail at it equally. Some political parties and candidates do more to promote justice and punish evil than others. Our moral obligation is to cast our vote for the party/candidate we have reason to believe will bring about the greatest amount of good possible.
However, every candidate is a mixed bag of both good and bad policies, so what should we do? We should vote for the candidate with the most “good” policies on the weightiest issues. While foreign policy, economics, sexual ethics, family, and the like are all important, they are not equally important. While a morally good economic policy is important to our well-being, a morally good foreign policy is more important because bad foreign policies can lead to the loss of liberty or even the death of citizens. Since liberty and life carry more moral significance than financial prosperity, a candidate’s foreign policy should weigh more heavily in our vote than his/her economic policy. Religious liberty is also more fundamental than economic prosperity, so it ranks higher in importance as well.
There is one issue, however, that stands out above the rest as the weightiest of all because it involves the penultimate human right: the right to life. All other rights and considerations are subservient to the right to life because they all assume the right to life. Dead people have no right to private property, to bear arms, religious freedom, or economic prosperity. That’s why I am persuaded that a party’s/candidate’s position on the issue of abortion should determine our vote in most circumstances.
Since abortion deprives valuable human beings of their most basic right, it is the worst form of injustice. And with more than 1.06 million babies being murdered each year, this is not a side concern, but a moral atrocity that should be at the center of our attention. Any politician who wants to use his or her political power to ensure that mothers have the right to murder their preborn children is not fit for public office, in the same way that any politician wanting to use his or her political power to ensure that mothers have a right to kill their two year old children is not fit for office. Political sanction of murder is the penultimate form of injustice. If one condones the ultimate injustice they surely are not qualified for government office since the purpose of government is to punish evil rather than promote it.
Imagine if we were living in Nazi Germany and had a chance to cast a vote for Adolf Hitler – who supported the murder of Jews – or another candidate who was opposed to the policy. Who would we have a moral obligation to vote for? Obviously, the other candidate. Hitler may have the better foreign and economic policy, but those issues pale in comparison to murdering innocent people. His support for the murder of innocent human beings is the decisive position that disqualifies him from public office. Anyone who voted for Hitler on the rationale that his other policies were good would be looked at like a moral moron, and rightly so. How could anyone vote for someone who sanctioned the murder of millions of people? And yet, pro-life adherents who vote Democrat do this all of the time. The only difference between the victims of the Holocaust and the victims of abortion are their size, location, level of development, and degree of dependency, but none of these differences are morally significance. Size and location do not confer moral value. Abortion and the Holocaust both deprive innocent and morally valuable human beings of their right to life. If we wouldn’t vote for politicians who supported a Holocaust, we shouldn’t vote for politicians who support abortion either.
Christians and people of conscience, think about your vote. Do you want to give political power to those who will use that power to continue or even expand the practice of abortion? Your vote has an effect on how many babies will die from this barbaric and immoral practice. I know there are a lot of concerns in any election, but the concern for the life of innocent and defenseless human beings who are being slaughtered ought to be our primary concern. Think about this before you cast your next vote.