Can a Third-Party Candidate Actually Win This Year?

Lately there's a lot of talk from voters about splitting from the two-party stranglehold that has had America by the throat since 1852. There's an even bigger pocket of Americans shouting “No, you fools! You're throwing away you're vote and Trump is gonna win! Remember 2000?! God help us all!” There's a lot of credence to both sides of this fight. When you have two wholly defective candidates leading those two parties, it becomes extremely difficult to vote for either. It's also a terrifying thought that we may have a wigged, orange rectum who's been taught to speak as the nation's 'leader' if we take a chance on a third party candidate. But, no risk, no reward. What to do, what to do...

I mean, it's not as if a third party candidate has ever won the presidency in America, right? Well, almost. In 1860, when Lincoln first won his seat, he was a in a third party. I can hear your wheels turning from here because you likely know that Lincoln was a Republican, which is an enormous party today. So much so, that it has enough members to make FOX News a thing. But in the 1860's, not only was the party that is now full of old, white guys who can only get erect if they put a Reagan mask on a hooker the liberal one back then, it was also in it's infancy. Lincoln was in the race against three other people, and managed to win by a fairly narrow margin. He later went on to free the slaves, end that disruptive Civil War, and taught us all the dangers of stage actors breaking the fourth wall. So there is historical precedent for a third party victory in the US.

But a lot has changed since 1860. Is a third party candidate a realistic option for today? A lot of people are justifiably horrified by the idea of a Trump White House, and believe that any outsider party support will result in the Earth cracking open, Baphomet rising from the underworld to become Secretary of State, and four years of a giant, Cheeto colored toddler with tiny hands screaming us to beyond the brink of nuclear war. The fear of Trump is about the only tool that a desperate and fatally damaged Hillary Clinton has to rack up those precious Independent votes. This fear is why you hear the early rhetoric of “A vote for third party is a vote for Trump!” It's an inaccurate platitude, but we all get where they're coming from.

When WikiLeaks released the DNC emails that proved that they were in the bag for Clinton from the start, and the 100 page report that Election Justice USA put out that is filled to the brim with compelling evidence that Bernie Sanders actually won the primary, Ol' Hill came across a big problem. She needs to try to convince a huge amount of voters who would rather sit bare-assed on the topside of a pineapple than give her what she stole, that she's the best use of their vote.

Trump and Clinton have nauseated the electorate to the point that they're running straight into the arms of their third party fellows. According to RealClearPolitics, Libertarian Gary Johnson has jumped nearly three points, netting 7.2% of the vote. Green Party Candidate Jill Stein has also moved up, but only by one percent so far, netting her 3.5% of the total vote in the same poll. This may not seem like much for either camp, but they haven't really had their respective shots at gaining serious momentum yet. A televised debate featuring the two, the new information about the DNC's bias for Clinton, and Trump's insistence on talking, just may be the tipping point for these unlikely contenders.

There's also a huge X factor in the Koch brothers. In case you've been living in a tree out of protest over deforestation for the last 30 years, the Koch brothers are the principle king makers in American politics. They put financial backing behind key candidates in sums that most of us can't even begin to fathom, but these guys treat like it's bubble gum change. In return, they receive tax breaks and subsidies in the billions, keeping their empire economically viable. This used to be some shadowy, cloak and dagger behavior that was kept out of the public eye. But after the passing of Citizens United (a bill that decided that corporations are the same entities as humans, and therefore should enjoy the same donor rights) the brothers have gone increasingly more public. They've both stated that they have no intention of backing Clinton or Trump. So what are they gonna do? It's unlikely that the Koch's will choose to abstain from involvement in the race. While Charles and David Koch haven't announced their plans for the upcoming election, you're fucking kidding yourself if you think that'll stop me from speculating.

The Koch brothers claim to be Libertarian. Their political history suggests something else, but we'll go with Libertarian for the sake of argument. This means that there's still a chance that they'll throw at least some of the alleged $90,000,000 that they allocated for this campaign at Gary Johnson. We'll all 'feel the Johnson' then. Hard and fast. Of course, if this is the plan, they'd better get crackin'. They only have about two and a half months to cover a 25% deficit with a third party candidate who has virtually no name recognition with the majority of the US votership. Tick tock.

The unfortunate reality is that a third party president is still pretty unlikely, at least as far as the numbers are concerned. Bernie Sanders broke unprecedented ground in the primaries by covering a nearly 40 point shortcoming in under a year, and even he got pushed out by the Washington power machine. While I love Jill Stein, and think that every Progressive should support her to the bitter end, I don't think she has any realistic shot at The Executive Branch. I'd love to be proven wrong on that point. But the fact that she's still not even on the ballot in all 50 states, and has no foreseeable chance at raising any real money for her campaign, suggests that she's an outlier. She'll take a good chunk of votes from Clinton, but a win is not likely. Calm down. I hate it too. But I'm not gonna paint a rosey picture just because it's what many of us want.

Johnson is the guy to watch. He certainly isn't the ideal candidate for Progressive Liberals, but he can't be worse than Trump or Clinton. Johnson may be a Tea Party nutjob, but I have yet to hear him say “Why do we have nukes if we can't use them?” or “We may even have to end Citizens United (Note: Not will, but may).” That makes him a practical option in my book.

In summation, I'm not going to tell you who to vote for. It shouldn't matter if I do. You have a brain. You can read (obviously). I can only tell you my plan. I'm going to follow the polls, use pragmatism in concert with my passion, not vote for Trump even if there's a gun in my mouth, and pay more attention to down ballot options than I do this sham of a presidential race. But my list for said sham is as follows:

  1. Sanders takes Clinton's spot because we have new evidence of gross corruption.

  2. 2. Jill Stein.

  3. Gary Johnson.

  4. Hillary (gut wretch, gut wretch) Clinton and

  5. Property in Mexico is pretty cheap. It's two hours south of where I live now, and I have experience running a restaurant. A good back up plan if these idiots pick Trump. He sure as shit isn't getting my vote under any circumstance.

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