I am writing an essay and I am stuck with this sentence

The citizens cast their votes choosing Mark as president and choosing me as vice-president.

is this correct or should it be

The citizens cast their votes choosing Mark as president and me as vice-president.

  • 2
    Both are ok. I prefer the second. I'd put in a comma "....votes, choosing Mark...." – ab2 ReinstateMonicaNow Dec 8 '15 at 22:05
  • 1
    @ab2 Yes; it's the people who voted and (thus) chose. The comma is a very good idea. And the repeat of 'choosing' sounds stuffy. – Edwin Ashworth Dec 8 '15 at 22:31
  • You are really stuck with this? You are really stuck with this? – RegDwigнt Dec 10 '15 at 13:02
  • Can you not say "For dinner I ate steak and potatoes"? – Hot Licks Dec 10 '15 at 14:02
  • 1
    Answer mine first. – Hot Licks Dec 10 '15 at 14:05

Both are correct, and it sounds better not to repeat the verb.

Repeating the verb uses a compound clause:

The citizens cast their votes (choosing Mark as president) and (choosing me as vice-president).

Otherwise it is a compound object:

The citizens cast their votes choosing (Mark as president) and (me as vice-president).

Neither is more correct than the other, but the unnecessary repetition sounds wordy.

  • 2
    Why do you think this? Please explain your answer in full. – Matt E. Эллен Dec 9 '15 at 9:52

Those are both grammatically correct sentences but they have two different meanings. It might be easier if I changed them slightly.

The citizens cast their votes choosing Obama as president and Biden as vice-president.


The citizens cast their votes choosing Jerry Brown as governor and choosing Gavin Newsom as vice-governor.

In the US system, the president and vice-president run together. You choose them together.

In California, though, the governor and vice-governor are elected independently.

Does that help?

  • 'Australian veterans, who fought the Germans at Tobruk and the Japanese at Milne Bay' / 'Democrats in 1972 who voted for Nixon and then Carter' are examples showing that the 'together' constraint you claim where the second instance of the verb is deleted seems not at all rigorous. With which opinion I agree. – Edwin Ashworth Jul 8 '16 at 10:17
  • Your second example is simply bad phrasing. Even the date is wrong. It should read something like "Democrats who voted for Nixon in 1972 and then went on to vote for Carter." The first sentence is intended as a generalization: the veterans fought lots of places, some individual at Tobruk, others at Milne, others elsewhere; that is what the "and" conveys. If you wrote "these veterans, who fought the Germans at Tobruk and fought the Japanese at Milne Bay", the suggestion -- exactly because of this rule -- would be that all the specific veterans in question fought in both places. – Malvolio Jul 8 '16 at 14:57
  • The fact remains that deletion is rarely as finely tuned as you make out; as John Lawler has pointed out, it can lead to ambiguities. – Edwin Ashworth Jul 8 '16 at 16:56

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