I voted for the lesser of two evils.
Consumers operating in the marketplace can fine-tune their purchases to closely match their tastes and preferences. Even with such “lumpy” purchases as automobiles, you can buy a slightly bigger or smaller car, with more or fewer options, and keep it longer than your neighbor does or trade it in sooner. Such fine gradations are not available in the political arena.
You might prefer Madison’s stands on education and welfare reform, for example, while favoring Monroe’s views on international relations. Voting is a lumpy decision, somewhat akin to tie-in sales contracts that require buying some things you do not want to get the things you desire. Casting a vote involves trade-offs because you cannot vote for a set of positions other than those taken by one of the candidates.
This is one reason that most public figures either state their positions on controversial issues in inoffensive terms or they waffle, avoiding direct answers to barbed questions aimed at them by reporters or their political opponents. This is an important example of the distortive effects of asymmetric information in the political arena. Rational ignorance among voters and the complexity of most issues are two other reasons that politicians frequently sidestep taking a stand.