My questions for Evan McMullin (part 1)

Hi Evan, my name is Chris Antenucci.  Ever since I became interested in politics as a young student in college, I’ve considered myself a conservative.  I’m also a Catholic, and my faith is the most important thing in my life.  It has informed my political views a great deal, and for this reason I’ve been active in the pro-life movement most of my adult life.

Compared to all of the other conservatives who’ve interviewed you, I’m a nobody, but I’d like to think that fact helps keep my ego out of it and allows me to search for the truth wherever it lies, regardless if it lines up with my current positions on the issues, or makes me look better or worse.  I see myself as an independent thinker who doesn’t fit under any label, but I am both fiscally and socially conservative.   Now that you have some idea of who I am, allow me to paint you a picture of how I ended up supporting your candidacy, because I believe my story is representative of many of my fellow conservatives in this election season.

Before the primaries even began, I was all over the map.  I was just looking for the most conservative candidate who could beat Hillary, and who most closely aligned with my views.  I went from Governor Walker to Senator Rubio to Senator Cruz, where I finally landed and stayed.  After he dropped out, I become politically homeless.  A political hobo, if you will.  I was even thinking about joining the Libertarian Party until they did what libertarians often do, which is act silly, and in this case nominate Gary Johnson.

After that, I was ready to give up, grab some popcorn, and watch the train wreck that is Trump’s candidacy unfold in slow motion.  Deep down I still hoped an independent conservative candidate would rise from the ashes of the remains of all the political corpses Trump stomped on during the primaries, like a knight in shining armor coming to save us.  Months went by, and nobody emerged.  Like the rest of my fellow #NeverTrump conservatives, I went through many emotions and phases of denial and acceptance as more and more conservative leaders caved to Trump, and were subsequently embarrassed by him.

First, I was in shock that a know-nothing reality tv show host could actually win the nomination.  Then I was despondent because it made me realize how many low info voters make up the GOP electorate, and also how few principled conservatives there are.  Finally, I was just amused at all the “conservative” leaders, especially evangelicals, doing rhetorical backflips and twisting themselves into pretzels to defend his indefensible words and actions.  I was also amused at how many GOP voters believed his lies and flip flops.  Eventually I accepted the reality that this is who a plurality of GOP voters wanted.  They wanted an incompetent, morally reprehensible freak show who would lose to Hillary and burn everything down around him, and they got it.

But then out of nowhere, you arrived on the scene, like an EMS worker showing up to a crime scene where a serial killer had already murdered a bunch of people in cold blood, and only a few remain alive, struggling for every breath.  At first I wasn’t sure if you were serious, since other candidates, like David French, had previously backed out due to lack of funds and name recognition.  I thought the same might happen with you.  But as the weeks went by, it became clear to me that you were serious about running for president, and intended to earn the votes of us politically homeless conservatives, as well as anyone else disgusted by the pathetic choices we’ve been presented with.

Your candidacy became a ray of light in a sky full of darkness in this political environment.  I saw many conservatives flock to your campaign, not just because they wanted someone to oppose Trump, but because they genuinely believed in you as a person, and knew you were a true conservative, and a man of honor, integrity, and faith.

Personally, my approach to politics is to trust no politician, because politics tends to attract people with big egos who care more about their own ambitions than what’s best for the country.  It’s a dirty business.  Most politicians will sellout their supporters in a heartbeat if it means they can collect more money from donors, or increase their chances of getting re-elected somehow.  However, one doesn’t have to trust a politician completely in order to support them.

Evan, I believe you’ve run a competent campaign, one defined by honor and decency, and based on the values and principles that this country was founded on.  That’s why I’ve decided to support you, and why I’m currently working on a diary that will serve as my attempt to convince my fellow conservatives to support and vote for you instead of Trump or Hillary.  I scoured the internet to do as much research as I could on you, but there wasn’t much out there.  That’s why I decided to reach out to your campaign and ask if I could send you some questions, so that we could all get to know you better.  I quickly received a follow-up message from your chief spokesperson, who told me she would forward my questions to you, and for that I’m grateful.  I hope you’ll have a chance to answer them, as I believe the more people who know you and learn about your life experiences, the more will come away impressed and eager to support you.

It is my intention in my upcoming diary to help my fellow conservatives, and anyone else who might be interested in voting for you to get to know who you are, what you stand for, and what your campaign is all about.  I came up with many questions, and I doubt you’ll be able to answer them all, so I would just ask that you pick the ones you would like to answer, and I’ll use your answers to help explain why you’re qualified to be president, and why all conservatives should vote for you.  The questions will be contained in part 2 of this diary, which is here.