So Close

Now that we’ve passed Labor Day, the threshold to the real election season, things seem quite gloomy. As I’ve noted before, the presidential debates are a crucial but biased part of a successful campaign. I am sure I am not alone when I say it would be refreshing glimmer of hope to have a third party candidate in one of the three upcoming presidential debates. Now, as you may have heard, a third party candidate may actually participate in a debate if they poll at 15% or higher in an aggregation of several national polls. We are lucky enough to have a third party candidate who is slowly closing in on that important 15%. One has to admit that, regardless of political views, we need greater depth in our options. Mr. Johnson is currently polling at 9% in an aggregation of polls from RealClearPolitics. Good for him.

We have another third party presidential candidate in the polls during this cycle, Jill Stein. Just as anyone in her position would, Jill Stein is basing a significant amount of her campaign on the corruption and unelectability of the two major party candidates. Jill Stein is running in her seventh political election this year (her second presidential run), and has managed to win one, becoming a town meeting representative in Lexington, Mass. I understand why she has stayed in to the end of each of these elections just to gain just a few percent of votes. She wants publicity for her party and ideals. This is an admirable pursuit in our political duopoly. Jill Stein is holding two to five percent in various polls right now and 3.3% in the same aggregate as above. This is an extraordinary gain compared to last elections results where she collected only 0.4% of votes. People who wouldn’t normally vote for Stein are desperately seeking other options.

Now here is where things get a bit sticky. I am a big supporter of all third party candidates. They allow for greater competition, a wider political discourse, and a better representation of the diverse ideologies that the United States is home to. However, in a landscape where republicans and democrats are fleeing from their parties and looking for any alternative, Jill Stein may be hurting more than she is helping by dividing the power of voters seeking any port. If Jill Stein would drop out, and perhaps even endorse Mr. Johnson(!), it could put Gary Johnson’s polls into a range where the CPD will have to consider his entry into the debates. CPD co-founder Frank Fahrenkopf is even willing to grant some leeway on the “magic number” to take into account margins of error. Unfortunately, I don’t see this as a likely option. Stein has a long history of never dropping out of political races, and after listening to her, I am becoming more convinced that she could never endorse or improve the chances of an ex-republican politician regardless of how terrifying the election’s other options might be.

As you can see, someone here at EI is becoming a little frustrated with the election…Until next time. -Dick

Perhaps another glimmer of hope?

1 comment to So Close

  • Occam's Safety Razor

    Just catching up on my EI, now awaiting Dick’s take on the outcome. Now that all the 3rd party voters are either kicking themselves or proud to have made a point, is there hope for independent candidates in the next election?

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