I wasted my vote in a state that finally matters

No, the problem is early voting. I cast my ballot by mail last month. I was one of more than 600,000 people in Washington who voted even before the South Carolina primary. Voting at leisure, by mail, is the simplest, easiest way to have your say. You don’t even need a stamp.

But I voted for one of the candidates who have since dropped out. That means I will have zero influence on the outcome. If we had ranked choice — in which you could pick a second candidate in case your chosen one failed to make the top tier — it would count. But that’s another argument.

Since I mailed in my ballot, Amy Klobuchar, Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren and Mike Bloomberg have dropped out. I should mention that I wrote a column just before Super Tuesday urging all of them to do just that. But what politician ever takes advice from a writer?

My experience is shared by millions of people, especially in California, who voted before the landscape shifted sharply. In essence, we are disenfranchised by our early diligence to democratic duty.

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