Activists Celebrate as Thousands of Democrats Protest Vote Against Biden

( – In Wisconsin’s Democratic Primary election on Tuesday April 2, 8.4% of voters, amounting to almost 48,000 votes, chose to vote “uninstructed” rather than for any of the Democrats listed on the ballot. An uninstructed vote signals a vote for the party but indicates disapproval of the specific options on offer.

In the Connecticut Democratic primary, the uninstructed option accounted for 11.5% of the votes, adding up to a little less than 8,000 votes. Rhode Island also allows for an uninstructed choice, and 14.9% of voters chose that rather than other Democrat choices, accounting for nearly 4,000 votes.

The wave of uninstructed votes may be a direct result of a campaign by activist groups to show their disapproval of the way the Biden administration has been handling the conflict between Israel and Palestine. One of the organizers of the “Vote Uninstructed” movement, Heba Mohammad, has said that their goal is to put “sustained pressure” on the White House to end military aid to Israel and create a lasting cease-fire in Gaza. Although Biden still won those primaries, activists believe that the protest votes have sent a critical message that he cannot count on Democrat voters to show up for him in November if he continues to ignore their wishes.

However, some Democrat voters don’t believe the uninstructed movement will have much of an effect in the long run. It seems increasingly clear that incumbent President Joe Biden will be the Democrat candidate in the 2024 presidential election, and many Democrats support the current U.S. stance in the Israel-Palestine situation. Jewish voters like Judy Coran and Alexa Safer both cast their ballots for Biden, with Coran specifically citing the way she sees Biden as having “Israel’s back” as one of her reasons for doing so.

Protest voting also affected the Republican primaries, as 2.1% of voters in the Wisconsin Republican primary went uninstructed rather than vote for Trump, DeSantis, or even Nikki Haley who ultimately carried 12.8% of the vote there. While some believe this could cause problems for Trump in the general election, others point to the fact that Biden only received about 20,000 more votes in Wisconsin than Trump in the 2020 presidential election suggesting that a large enough wave of uninstructed or other protest votes driven by pro-Palestine activists could hand Wisconsin’s ten electoral votes to Trump in November.

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