I’ve been leaning Gary Johnson since two events happened.
1) “Look at my African-American”. What the F was Trump smoking before he said that? I have given him a pass on a lot of things because he’s been “genuine”, but this was a line in the sand where after 213 gaffes, I had to seriously reconsider. This was just out there even for him.
2) The Mexican-American judge. Trump is getting sued for Trump University and he called for the judge to be pulled off of his case because Trump is advocating for building a wall and because of this, the judge cannot possibly be fair to him because the judge belongs to a Hispanic-based law group.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m rooting for Trump to defeat Hillary in a cage match to the death on the debate stage (this will also reduce Hillary’s numbers and clear a path for Johnson). The Democrat party I supported for about 15 years has gone wayyyyy too far to the left, and I’m still in the center. I’m tired of hearing “deficit reduction” while our national debt continues to increase despite record tax incomes and wonder why no one is actually trying to balance the budget. I’m sick of hearing trade deals that send all of our jobs overseas. I’m sick of having 11 million illegal immigrants in this country who we do not know anything about. I have been “told” in articles I must refer to transgender people as “them” or else I’m somehow going to offend someone. I highly support gay rights and gay marriage, but the T on the LGBT label is unsettling to a LOT of people in this country – and we cannot shove this culture down their throat. Social change takes time in this country, and I think the “T” portion of this may need to be walked back a few more years. All people have rights, not just minority groups. These rights need to be balanced and, like I said, social change takes time.
With this, I was shopping for a candidate on the right. Let me first start by saying, out of the 17 on the right, the only real person I had any interest in voting for besides Trump was Christie. Christie, despite being against gay marriage, signed it into law – which told me he was capable of separating his personal beliefs from his job governing the will of the people. All too often there is muddle out there because someone has beliefs that you don’t, and you feel your beliefs should somehow trump theirs because you are passionate about your beliefs – you then want to call them racists or bigots because that somehow makes you morally superior. The truth is, I respect someone who doesn’t believe what you do, but STILL passes a law because he knows the will of the people want it. It is sometimes important to understand the root of someone’s beliefs in order to properly counter it with a cogent argument other than passion.
All of the other gang of 15 I felt were way too far to the right for me. This was confirmed when Ben Carson gets up on stage and says that Clinton talks to Lucifer or some shit like that. Really dude???? He’s like that dude at the karaoke bar that had 10 too much to drink and he keeps singing “Friends in Low Places” on repeat until 4AM. Get off the stage already. But I digress – I took a special interest in Trump destroying these 15 or so candidates and making them look like chumps. My central-left self was taking great joy in seeing Trump take out Bush. I rooted for him to do so.
I gave him pass after pass because I was waiting for the “pivot”. It hasn’t really come, and after a year, he really hasn’t learned how to get to that “next level”. This, was the promise I made to all of you – if I don’t see “the pivot”, I will have to pull the rip cord at some time.
I’m at a point where I can’t even talk politics with my left friends because they are so convinced Trump is a racist and bigot and they aren’t taking the time to understand where he’s arguing from. If you cannot understand this, then you cannot defeat it. Calling someone a racist and bigot is pretty low brow and it’s pretty much a weak argument if you look at the totality of everything, but again, people are so passionate against him and convinced he’s Hitler that you can’t even debate the finer nuances of politics and the law without people wanting to smash a frying pan over your head. I have concluded that Trump is 100% Machiavellian, and everything he’s doing is to own the news cycles to then get into the White House. Your guess is as good as mine as to how this experiment would turn out. I have to admire a guy who woke up one morning 15 months ago and said to himself, “I’m going to be President”, and then executed a brilliant strategy of manipulating all media cycles for that entire duration. Political scientists will be talking about Trump’s usage of the media for the next 100 years as well as his asymmetrical attacks on his opponents they can not beat. After Trump called him “low energy”, that’s all anyone saw. At this point, 13 months in, I think Trump has spent like $40 million. To put it into perspective, Bush burned through $125 million in 4 months and his poll numbers consistently kept going down.
Enter stage right, you have Gary Johnson and Jill Stein. At this point right now, Gary Johnson has 13% of the votes and the only third party candidate at this point with a chance to get on the debate stage. He’s a former New Mexico republican governor who is now running for the Libertarian party. And…his positions actually have a little that both sides would like and a little both sides might be weary of. But no one seems to passionately hate him as much as the right hates Hillary or the left hates Trump.
Maybe the best candidate this year is one who has found a formula in compromise?
But, you say, he has NO CHANCE!!
Wrong. He actually has a very good chance. Let me explain why.
Trump and Clinton seem to have a stranglehold on many of the red and blue states. There are quite a few purple states out there, and there is an appetite for someone who is not Trump OR Clinton. It’s quite possible that a popular former Republican governor who was a CEO might also get 1-2, maybe 3 states. Perot’s problem was that he took from both Clinton and Bush and was not able to secure a single state. Johnson might actually be able to carry a small handful of states, and this could block either Clinton or Trump from getting the needed 270 electoral votes.
What happens then? It goes to the House to decide.
Currently, the Republicans have 247 votes and the Democrats have 186 votes. At first glance, you might think, “this is a slam dunk for Trump”. I bet you’d be wrong. Why? How many Republicans have been pissed off by Trump? How many feel he doesn’t represent them? How many feel like “Never Trump” isn’t just for Clinton supporters? If you recall, Trump has around a 40% or so number among Republicans, meaning 60% favored people other than him. Most of the top names in the party skipped the convention. You then start to look at the 186 Democrat votes. They know that they don’t have enough numbers to put Hillary in office. They have one of two strategies facing them:
- Vote for Hillary and hope and pray all 247 don’t vote for Trump.
- Realize their best path of defeating Trump is to cast votes for Gary Johnson, who is mostly socially liberal. Hope that 20-40 of the Republicans would then also vote for Johnson to give him a majority.
I strongly believe at least half of the Republicans in the house, if given the chance to have Trump or Johnson, would pick Johnson. The Republicans who want to vote Johnson would then ask the Democrats to vote for Johnson, and they pledge they would vote for him as well, but they need to do it first. Otherwise, the Dems will have a united front of Republicans against Hillary. If 186 Dems voted for Johnson, it would take roughly 35 of the 247 Republicans to vote for Johnson to put him in the White House.
And there you go. The big obstacle for Johnson right now is that he’s polling around 13%. If he gets 15%, he can get on the debate stage. My guess is the networks might find ways to do this anyhow.
Johnson would then have to stay out of the fray and talk about policies, and let Clinton and Trump go at each other with knives and clubs.
This is the ONLY path the Republicans have at stopping Clinton, and the only path the Democrats have at stopping Trump.
Therefore, I’d encourage those living in a decent sized purple state or two to thus vote for Gary Johnson, and both parties will then have a compromise for president.
If you think about it, it might be the only way to avoid catastrophe in this country for the next 4 years. Johnson is also highly committed to reducing spending, which can help us in the national debt crisis we face.
Where is he with the politics? He’s more or less self described as conservative fiscally and socially “I don’t care”, which is pretty much where I’ve been my whole life. His more radical ideas are to get rid of income tax, only use consumption, and reduce spending by 43%, but my guess is these items are the utopian dream and not what the final product would be.
This looks to reflect his stances…my Republican friends may find this a palpable alternative to Trump, gift wrapped with your economic conservative values. This is how he compares to Trump.
So, my left friends will see he’s a friend to abortion rights, drug policies, immigration reform, and LGBT rights. This might be a great alternative to a Trump universe for them. However, my right friends will see he’s on the same page with education, environment (actually, reduced smart regulations he calls it), gun control, and health care as well as an overhaul to taxes.
Might I also add that New Mexico thrived economically when he was the Republican governor.