Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Op-Ed: Holy Ballot Access! This Evan guy is for real!

This was my attempt to write an Op-Ed piece. It will probably never be published, but that is one of the great things about the internet is I can at least publish it here.
Evan McMullin now has the ballot access he needs to win the presidency. It is no longer a theoretical issue of, could Evan win, but it is in fact a very real scenario where our next president could be Mr. McMullin. As of September 23rd Evan has his name on only nine ballots but he will be a write in candidate for an additional 20 states. IF he can persuade the majority of Americans to cast their vote his way then he has the potential to garnish up to 303 electoral votes and secure the presidency. The only thing he is lacking now is the support of the people, which is no small thing. In a nation that has become evenly divided between two party lines it is easy to see why most people are skeptical that this could even happen. However, if people are desperate enough and are willing to reach outside of themselves it could happen.
But why should people even care? After all, the system is rigged and it’s not like Evan will be able to draw enough support to win even one state, let alone, 29 states. At least that is what the two party system tells us. We hear it all the time anymore. A vote for anyone but Trump is a vote for Hillary, or a vote for the Libertarians or the Green Party are a vote for Trump. No wonder more and more Americans are convinced that their vote and their opinions don’t matter. Don’t the majority of American’s feel that they, personally, are not racist despite being repeatedly told that this is a major issue in America? Didn’t the majority of Americans vote to define marriage as the union between a biological man and a biological woman? Don’t the majority of Americans now believe that abortion is wrong or even immoral? Is it not true that the two major party candidates are probably the most unpopular candidates to take the debate stage since the civil war era? And yet here we are. Our two party candidates are offering us more “hope and change” while the majority of American’s feel ever more pessimistic about the future.
So what are our options? Despite the party rhetoric, your vote is your own. If you chose to not vote for a candidate it is not a vote for the other candidate. Instead it means that the candidate failed to gain your support. This scare tactic works well in a two party race because even if you lose the election you can still claim that you have enough support to win the next time around. In a multi-party race, where voters have several options, the candidates have to work harder to gain your support. Thus we see the reason why our political duopoly wants to maintain the status quo. We have the option in this race to vote for a variety of candidates. Garry Johnson and the libertarian party have gained access to all 50 states. The Green Party has direct access to at least 23 states giving them up to 327 electoral votes! And as much as I personally dislike the Green Party, I have to admit that Jill Stein is far more electable than Hillary. The Constitution Party’s Darrel Castel has direct access to 22 states and with the addition of write-in states has the ability to accumulate up to 308 electoral votes. If we add in Evan McMullan there are four viable options for the presidency all of whom, in my opinion, are more electable than the top two party candidates.
Yet why don’t we hear more about these other options? The answer is simple, it’s the media. The media is controlling every aspect of this narrative. When Evan announced his campaign seven weeks ago the media treated it like it was a joke. It was mildly amusing and sold as a real threat to the Trump campaign because, get this, Evan is Mormon and the Utah Mormons don’t seem to like Trump. Now that he has the access he needs to win the election he is still told directly by reporters that there is absolutely no way for him to win. Well they ought to know. The TV coverage that Donald Trump received in comparison to other Republican candidates was extremely one-sided and now we have Trump. The same is true for Hillary who has TV anchors answering questions for her. The one world media empire is pulling out all the stops to let the rest of the world know just how amazing and awe inspiring their new empress really is. Hillary’s one major opponent Jill Stein has started resorting to participating in illegal protests in order to get a little bit of press. The only thing we get to hear about Gary Johnson is that he spaced it when asked about a specific city in Syria. Why didn’t the moderator just say Syria? Instead he was more specific by saying Aleppo. The Syrians should be thanking Johnson for his gaffe because it has helped to bring awareness about their war torn city, and I digress.

So what do we do about it? The media corporations tell us what to do, think, and say. Surely one man, in the generic sense, can’t really make any difference, right? Well, Evan McMullin is one person and so is Hillary and so is Donald. One man offered to step up and fulfill the role of campaign manager. One man offered to step up and handle campaign finance. One man offered to run the ad campaign. Well, you get the point. In the US there are approximately 241 million individual votes that when counted up lead to the election of the most powerful office in the world. In 2012 only 53.6% of that population cast a vote. It is hard to feel like your voice makes a difference when you refuse to open your mouth. Well, I am going to open my mouth and I am going to invite you to join me. You don’t need to vote for my candidate I would only ask that you make a serious consideration of the candidates at hand and vote for the candidate that can do the best job.
Since this is an opinion piece I am going to tell you who I think can do the best job, and that is Evan McMullin. In full disclosure I should tell you that I have not contributed to his campaign. Nor have I volunteered in any way to his campaign. And no, I am not supporting him because he is a Mormon. I mean really, Harry Reid is a Mormon and I don't support him. I had very little love for Jon Huntsman when he was running. In the 2012 election I actually favored Rick Santorum over Romney in the primaries. I don’t agree with Evan on every issue either. In fact on a few issues I strongly disagree with him. I can’t even vote for the guy in my state! However, I am seriously considering contributing. In fact, I would like to ask that all of us consider contributing in some way to help make our future one that we can be optimistic about.
Let’s “cast” our votes and let them fall where they may.