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Friday, November 16, 2018

Columns

Third party not to blame for election results


There are plenty of reasons to chalk up why Donald Trump is president-elect and Hillary Clinton isn’t. Those who voted for a third-party candidates is not one of the reasons.

Pinning blame and hate on people willing to vote for the outcome of the election is also an ignorant conclusion.

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow seemed defeated on election night and blamed third-party voters. Maddow said, “If you vote for someone who can’t win for president, it means you don’t care who wins for president.”

People who believe and regurgitate things similar to Maddow are part of the problem that keeps the U.S. in its ever-polarizing, two-party tailspin. This attitude will never breed the unity and togetherness that we so desperately need.

Scaring people into choosing between two lousy candidates is no way to fix the problem. I’d rather vote for a third party candidate than compromise my morals.

Also, a lot of complaints about third party votes in swing states assume that each and every third-party voter would have voted for Clinton if there hadn’t been a third choice.

Gary Johnson’s platform leaned more right than left. If anything, he probably scalped more votes off of the Trump bandwagon than Clinton’s.

2016 was a record year for voter registration, yet it was one of the lowest voter turnouts in years. There were 231.5 million eligible voters with only 129 million who went out and actually cast a ballot.

I hope that information frustrates you just as much as it does me.

The voter turnout rate in this country is atrocious. There is no excuse whatsoever for it, especially with the record amounts of people registered to vote this year. Maybe try using your right to vote instead of going around saying that it is a privilege.

I’m not one to give false hope via an alternate outcome. I’m not going to say that the result of this race would have been different if more registered Americans had voted. At the very least, though, it would have been a more accurate representation of what this country wants.

The results would have been clearer that way.

Don’t blame third-party voters if the election didn’t turn out in your favor for exercising the same right that you had.

Assistant opinion Thom Dwyer broadcast journalism sophomore and can be reached at [email protected]

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