The primaries are coming up (for those of you not in New Hamp or Iowa) and it's time for those of us who have been purposely avoiding as much of the gossip that passes for political coverage as possible to think about voting. or not voting. As a quick aside, I'd like to recommend that everyone who plans on not voting to not vote by going to your polling station and turning in an empty ballot. If you're going to not vote, might as well make it official. Shake things up. Also, a big apology to you non-United Statesians out there for exposing you to the generally distastful inner workings of American "democracy."
In order to make the process a bit more fun, lots of interactive internet surveys have been popping up that allow you to compare your own views to those of the candidates. I'll share my favorites with you. You'll find a whole pile of them if you google "presidential match quiz."
The first is called the votematcher from speakout and it's the quickest and easiest one. Change.org also has their own very similar version called the presidential matchmaker. Choose whether you support or oppose certain issues and the quiz will show you the extent to which you agree with certain candidates. They haven't yet removed some of the candidates like Bill Richardson who've already dropped out but otherwise it's a pretty good quiz. You can look further into what the candidates have done to establish their positions once the quiz is tabulated.
Michigan public radio also has a quiz that's a bit more detailed. You have to choose from specific policies.
The third quiz takes a bit more time so I recommend only using it to evaluate only your favorite 5 candidates or so. It takes quotes from the candidates and asks you which you agree with.
These quizes should help to narrow down the field for you so you can spend your time focusing on the two to three candidates you like. Here are my results in case you were wondering.
Quiz 1: Kucinich - 93%; Gravel - 80%; Clinton - 78%; and way at the bottom Romney 8%; Hunter 5%.
Quiz 2: Kucinich - 15; Clinton, Edwards and Gravel - 11; Hunter, McCain, Romney and Thompson - 1.
Quiz 2: Kucinich - 10 issues; Edwards 9 issues; and at the bottom Giuliani - 1 issue.
Three guesses who I plan on voting for. I was actually surprised at how well the internet figured out the candidate I like.