Neil Stevens’ recent post about issues and the confusion and misunderstanding arising from the #NeverTrump monicker really got me thinking about the need for us to move away from using #NeverTrump and changing it to #NeitherTrumpNorHillary.
The reason being that #NeverTrump opens the door to the accusations and misunderstanding mentioned in Stevens’ post, plus it doesn’t open the door to #NeverHillary people. With a recent poll showing that 40% of Bernie Sanders supporters would cross over to Trump on Nov 8, that is troubling.
The statement to be made is the standing on principles. What we should have gotten was an honest choice between the constitution and socialism. Instead, what we are getting is a binary choice between corrupt bureaucratic big government and corrupt corporate crony capitalism. What G.K. Chesterton called Hudge & Gudge – the two-headed beast of Big Government and Big Business.
Using #Never Trump tells people (whether it’s accurate or not) that we’d rather vote for Hillary. Just as #NeverHillary tells people (whether it’s accurate or not) that we’d rather vote for Trump.
But what is really meant by both is that we are all fed up with both sides of the political establishment. That principles matter. And that NEITHER candidate is acceptable.
By using #NeitherTrumpNorHillary (or #NeverTrumpNeverHillary) it opens the door to everyone who is fed up. It tells those on the right that they can, instead, vote for the Libertarian Party or Constitution Party candidate or write-in Ted Cruz or someone else. It tells those on the left that they can, instead, vote for the Green Party or Peace & Freedom Party candidate or write-in Bernie Sanders or someone else.
It also opens a vast number of people to vote for an as yet unknown but potential independent candidate who could possibly come onto the scene between now and Nov 8.
If this potential independent person does not come to fruition, the results of large numbers of people voting for someone other than Trump and Hillary would be a damning statement that (whoever wins) would not have a mandate given that 30+% didn’t vote for them. In 1992, Bill got only 43% and Bush Sr. got only 37%. It could very well happen this year that neither major party candidate gets more than one-third of the vote each.
Doesn’t matter about the Electoral College. It’s (as was stated in Steves’ article) a statement about principles – which cuts across party lines.
In the event of an actual independent candidate who could capture attention and votes to force a 3-way split on Nov 8, all that candidate needs to do is win one or two states to grab enough EC votes to prevent both Hillary and Trump from winning outright (by neither reaching the requisite 270 EC votes).
In that case, the 12th Amendment kicks in. The current House of Representatives votes from the Top 3 EC vote getters. That vote is done as a 1-state 1-vote, but is determined by the balance of representation by state. Given that the House is currently controlled by the GOP (with 33 states having a GOP majority of Reps and another 3 states – ME, NH, NJ – evenly split) there is a potential for that independent candidate to win 26 states/votes in the EC.
[Side Note: The current Senate would vote for the VP from the Top-2 VP EC vote getters, so that would be between the two major party VP candidates only, in a straight up-or-down vote of the 100-member Senate. 51 votes wins, with the GOP currently holding the Senate 54-46].
Stop using #NeverTrump and start using one of the following: