Why Slate’s Staff and Contributors Are Telling You Which Presidential Candidate They’re Voting for

The inner workings of Slate.
Nov. 5 2012 6:33 AM

Slate Votes

Why our staff and contributors are telling you which presidential candidate they’re supporting.

Click here to see how Slate staff and contributors are voting.

David Plotz David Plotz

David Plotz is Slate's editor at large. He's the author of The Genius Factory and Good Book.

Today, Slate's staff and contributors reveal how they're voting in Tuesday’s presidential election. This continues a tradition we began in 2000 and carried on in 2004 and 2008. This year, as in 2008, Democrat Barack Obama has won a strong majority of Slate’s votes, though Republican and Libertarian candidates improved on their meager totals from four years ago, and we have one vote for Green candidate Jill Stein this time around. (Incidentally, this is a voluntary project: Our staff and contributors can reveal how they voted, but they are not required to.)

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My two predecessors as Slate's editor, Michael Kinsley and Jacob Weisberg, each wrote articles explaining why we reveal our votes. As in 2008, I don't have anything to add to their eloquent arguments, so please read Kinsley's 2000 piece here (mentally subbing "Romney" for "Bush" and "Obama" for "Gore"), and Weisberg's 2004 piece here ("Romney" for "Bush" and "Obama" for "Kerry").

To repeat what I wrote in this space four years ago, I don't think Obama's Slate victory reflects a bias that has corrupted the magazine during the campaign. There are obvious reasons why Slate would lean heavily toward Obama. Slate's voters tend to skew young and all polls show younger voters favoring the Democrat. And we are journalists.

To quote Kinsley:”No doubt it is true that most journalists vote Democratic, just as most business executives (including most media owners) vote Republican, though neither tendency is as pronounced as their respective critics believe. This is a natural result of the sort of people who are attracted to various careers. It is not the product of any conspiracy.”

Also, most of our staff and contributors live in Democratic-tilting cities in blue states on the East and West coasts. The only Slate staffers casting a meaningful vote are managing editor Rachael Larimore, who votes in Ohio, senior editor Dan Kois, who votes in Virginia, and intern Mark Stern, who votes in Florida. Rachael’s supporting Romney. Dan and Mark are supporting Obama.*

*Correction, Nov. 5, 2012: The article originally said the only Slate staffer in the survey casting a meaningful presidential vote was Managing Editor Rachael Larimore, who lives in Ohio. Senior editor Dan Kois votes in Virginia and intern Mark Stern votes in Florida.

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