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Top Ten Most Popular IVN Articles of 2012

by Shawn M. Griffiths, published

2012 was a big year for IVN. It was a year of significant expansion and accomplishments. IVN reached out to an audience of over seven million people with content written by independent contributors for independent-minded voters.

Below is a list of the top ten most popular articles from the last year:

10. What Happens if There is an Electoral Vote Tie

The 2012 presidential election was so close this year that there were many people asking the question, what happens if there is a tie in the Electoral College? IVN Managing Editor, Shawn M. Griffiths, explains the contingency measures established in the United States Constitution in the event that there is not a decisive winner in a presidential election.

    "The constitution gives the authority to select the new President of the United States to the US House of Representatives if there is an electoral tie. The House does not select the presidential ticket or the campaign. House members would pick the president only because the constitutional authority to select the Vice President of the United States belongs to the US Senate."
9. Ten Reasons to Legalize Marijuana

2012 was a big year for Cannabis advocates. Two states, Colorado and Washington, legalized the recreational use of marijuana. W.E. Messamore examines ten arguments in favor of marijuana legalization for both medical and recreational use.

    "According to former US Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders, the active drug ingredient in marijuana, THC, is not physiologically addictive the way nicotine and caffeine are, and it’s not fatally toxic to the brain and body in high amounts the way alcohol is, yet these alternatives are legal and marijuana is not."
8. Forget The Nomination, Ron Paul's Revolution is Taking over The Republican Party

Ron Paul didn't win the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, but his impact on the Republican Party was definitely noticed. After the results of the 2012 elections, it is possible that more of the platforms that Ron Paul supports will be taken seriously by the GOP.

    "But perhaps more important and far-reaching in its implications for the future of national politics in the US, is not Ron Paul’s delegate count, but the fact that his supporters are successfully taking over the Republican Party district by district, county by county, state by state."
7. Fact Check of 2016 Movie: Obama’s America by Dinesh D’Souza

The conservative author, Dinesh D'Souza, released a movie about President Obama's road to the White House, his first term, and what four more years under his leadership may lead to. Regular IVN contributor Carl Wicklander takes a harder look into the movie he calls "part autobiographical, part psychological, and part imperial."

    "The majority of conservative outrage at Obama has centered on the Democratic president’s supposed Marxism: bromides on wealth redistribution and socialized medicine. But “2016″ is really a foreign policy movie thinly disguised as a movie about a domestic-minded president. In fact, the specific domestic policies are barely remarked upon."
6. Nine Reasons to Save Public Libraries

While the rest of the country was discussing the "war on women" and Chick-fil-A, Emmily Bristol took a closer look at a growing trend in several states across the country. Namely, the cuts in funding for public libraries and why these institutions should be saved.

    "These days, there are a lot of people talking about how nobody reads anymore. But that’s just wrong. People are reading ALL THE TIME. People are on Facebook, on Wikipedia, on blogs… They are using e-readers to read virtual copies of books. They are downloading newspapers to their tablet devices. People still read. And people read books — with pages and paper and bindings — too. But the fact is, there’s all kinds of other stuff besides books that libraries do for people in our community every day."
5. Economist Peter Schiff Forecasts Second Crisis to Hit Around 2013

Who is Peter Schiff you might ask? Peter Schiff is a Republican economist who is well known for saying he is proud to be in the one percent. He also ran for the GOP nomination in the 2010 U.S. Senate race in Connecticut. Schiff predicted a bad recession would hit the U.S. in 2007 or 2008 which fellow GOP economic voices scoffed at.

Earlier this year, Forbes reported that Peter Schiff's next prediction was that America would see another economic crisis in 2013 or 2014.

    "If you’re smart, you’ll listen– at least to hear him out. Forbes reported this spring that the ever-bearish and independent Schiff is forecasting another economic crisis that will strike at the very heart of the U.S. economy, sweeping through the monetary system itself and precipitating a massive U.S. dollar and Treasury bond crisis. His analysis of the underlying economic problem and solution is essentially the same as it was when he predicted the 2007-2008 financial crisis."
4. to Host First Online Presidential Debate

As the title entails, IVN hosted the first online presidential debate in 2012. The debate featured Libertarian Party candidate, Governor Gary Johnson, and Green Party candidate, Jill Stein. The two presidential candidates discussed issues seldom talked about in the presidential debates between the mainstream candidates over Google Hangout. will be hosting the first ever, online presidential debate. Unlike debates in the past, the candidates and moderators will simultaneously participate from different states. will utilize its website and associated social media accounts to publish the event and gather questions for the candidates.
3. Gun Ownership: An International Comparison

The article takes an in-depth look at how gun policy in the United States compares with other countries around the world. The piece, written by Heather Rodgers, has garnered over 6,900 likes on Facebook and has been shared over one hundred times on Twitter.

    "The United States has the loosest gun control laws of all developed countries. In the US, there are virtually as many guns as there are people. According to FBI crime statistics, 8,775 of the 12,996 murders that occurred in the U.S. in 2010 were caused by firearms.
    With a gun being the weapon of choice in so many of the homicides in the United States, consider other countries, with stricter gun control laws, and how murders involving firearms there are much lower."
2. President Obama Wins Florida with the Independent Vote

The 2012 presidential election was initially predicted to be one of the closest elections the American people have seen in many years and, in some states, it was very close.

IVN was among the first to call Florida for President Obama, a decision that was later explained by IVN founder, Chad Peace. The article, by regular contributor Brenda Evans, received over 1,500 "upvotes" on Reddit, which helped it become one of the most popular articles published on IVN in 2012.

    "Florida was the last state to be called, due in part to long lines at some polling locations and absentee ballots that needed to be counted in such a close race. According to Huffington Post, Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections Penelope Townsley said the delay was due to “an extremely high volume of absentee ballots.” In some precincts voters were still casting ballots past midnight."
1. 100 Ways Mitt Romney is Just Like Barack Obama

During the election season, people heard a great deal about how the two mainstream presidential candidates were different, but very few people talked about how Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are alike and there are plenty of similarities shared between both of them.

The most popular article on IVN in 2012, written by W.E. Messamore, listed out the 100 ways the 2012 presidential candidates are the same. It received over 14,000 likes on Facebook, was shared over 700 times on Twitter, and nearly 100 times on Google Plus.

    "The following list isn’t just a bunch of opinions, but documented facts that together draw a compelling picture: Far from being polar opposites, the two “choices” offered as presidential candidates by this country’s two main parties are nearly indistinguishable on the substantive public policy challenges Americans face."

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