The Vote for Heaven or Hell

A powerful senator dies after a prolonged illness. His soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance.

"Welcome to Heaven," says St. Peter. "Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see a high official around these parts, you see, so we're not sure what to do with you."

"No problem, just let me in," says the senator. "Well, I'd like to but I have orders from higher up. What we'll do is have you spend one day in Hell and one in Heaven. Then you can choose where to spend eternity."

"Really, I've made up my mind. I want to be in Heaven."

"I'm sorry but we have our rules," replies St. Peter.

And with that, St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to Hell. The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of a green golf course. Nearby are all his friends and other politicians who had worked with him. Everyone is in evening attire and very happy to see him. They run to greet him, hug him, and reminisce about the good times they had while getting rich at the expense of the people. They play a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster and caviar.

Also present is the Devil, who really is a very friendly guy and who has a good time dancing and telling jokes. They are having such a good time that the time flies, before he realizes it, the senator has to go. Everyone gives him a big hug and waves while the elevator rises.

The elevator goes up, up, up and the door reopens on Heaven where St. Peter is waiting for him.

"Now it's time to visit Heaven."

The next 24 hours pass with the senator joining a group of contented souls moving from cloud to cloud, playing the harp and singing. They have a good time and, before he realizes it, the 24 hours have gone by and St. Peter returns.

"Well then, you've spent a day in Hell and another in Heaven. Now choose your eternity." The senator reflects for a minute, then answers, "Well, I would never have said it, I mean Heaven has been delightful, but I think I would be better off in Hell."

So St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to Hell. Now the doors of the elevator open and he is in the middle of a barren land covered with waste and garbage. He sees all his friends, dressed in rags, picking up the trash and putting it in black bags.

The Devil comes over to him and lays his arm on his neck.

"I don't understand," stammers the senator. "Yesterday I was here and there was a golf course and a beautiful club and we ate lobster and caviar and danced and had a great time. Now there is only a wasteland full of garbage and my friends look miserable."

The Devil looks at him, smiles and says, "Yesterday we were campaigning. Today you voted for us!"
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