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Sunday, June 23, 2024

Election’s real choice? None of the above


none-of-the-above-logoThe sordid and disgusting Presidential campaign of 2016 best supports, more than ever, the need for offering “none of the above” on our national ballots.

While bombastic, self-promoting billionaire (who might not even be worth one billion) Donald J. Trump is arguably the worst Presidential candidate in history (or at least in modern times), many voters believe former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is almost as bad.

The two candidates rank as the most unpopular contenders for the Presidency ever foisted on those of us who need to make a selection in November.

But why don’t we have another offer?  A ballot choice called “None of the Above” with the proviso that if none of the above gets more votes than any candidate then nobody is elected and we must start over with new, different candidates.

Nevada offers a variation on its ballots — “None of These Candidates” — but the vote only shows the level of distaste for voters.  If “none of these candidates” wins, the actual candidate who finishes second is still considered the winner and is elected.

Too bad.  We have to wonder how many Presidents in history would have been only footnotes if “None of the Above” were on the ballot and prevailed as the actual, binding selection by voters.

Some election watchers this year think Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson, former governor of New Mexico, might climb out of the depths of current polls to — if nothing else — draws enough votes to serve as a spoiler.

The Richmond (Virginia) Times-Dispatch wrote last weekend that it did not feel Trump or Clinton were worth selection by voters and endorsed Johnson — the first daily newspaper to break ranks and say “nada” to the two major parties.

The TD was the flagship paper of the old Media General chain that was hardcore Republican and conservative.  In Virginia’s last gubernatorial election, it said neither Democrat Terry McAuliffe or Republican Ken Cuccinelli were up to the job and refused to endorse anyone.

The newspaper is now owned by billionaire Warren Buffett, who supports Clinton but leave editorial decisions up to the newspapers themselves.

As happens in today’s blinder-driven political world, those who don’t like criticism of their candidate lash out at the author of such commentaries and declare them a tool of the opposition.  When I write about the failings of Trump, much of the commentary comes from those who call me a liberal or a “Democratic whore.”

They, of course, ignore past columns that have raked Clinton over the coals or this news site’s history of criticizing many of the actions of her husband, Bill Clinton, when served in the Oval Office and used it for his sexual dalliances.

Shallowness, sadly, is a byproduct of a society where people assume too much and forget the old axiom that those who “assume” forget that the word is composed of making an “ass” out of “u” and “me. ”

In more than a half-century of reporting, I covered my first Presidential nominating convention in Chicago in 1968 and have reported on Presidents from Lyndon Johnson to Barack Obama.  During those five decades, I have not seen a more disgusting political debacle as Campaign 2016.

Much of my personal disgust is with Trump.  He is, at best, a con man with no experience in any of the areas needed to be a nation’s leader.  As a business, he is more boast than fact  — a man who began his real estate business with 22 million of inherited money from his father and the luck to do so in the boom years of buying and selling property.  His business losses are huge, his bankruptcies disturbing and his constant lying and exaggerations a telltale sign of a showoff with more talk than accomplishment.

Trump thrives by putting investors in his projects in the poorhouse and leaves a growing trail of vendors who worked on his projects and have to go to court to try and collect.

He’s a liar and a cheat who tops even the normal connivers of the political universe.

Clinton has enough skeletons to fill several closets but at least has experience on her side.

At this point, however, I cannot say who, if anyone, will get my vote.  It won’t go to Trump, that is the only certainty in this election.

In this Presidential election year, it is hard to say who might win in November.

But the loser will be this country and those of us who live in it.


Copyright © 2016 Capitol Hill Blue

13 thoughts on “Election’s real choice? None of the above”

  1. I am going to have to call you on that. Hillary “has skeletons to fill several closets” simply because Republicans have been smearing her for decades. Every single accusation has been investigated over and over again (to the tune of MILLIONS of taxpayer dollars) and there have never been any charges filed. If she was actually guilty of anything, I think she would have been charged with some sort of crime by now!

    People assume that “where there is smoke, there must be fire” but the Republicans have been operating a giant smoke generator for decades. This is the reason that you can ask any Hillary-hater exactly why they dislike her and all they can give you is allegations that have been investigated and found to be false.

    • ” If she was actually guilty of anything, I think she would have been charged with some sort of crime by now!”

      On the Matt Lauer forum last night, Navy veteran Lt. John Lester pointed out the fallacy in your statement here. “I held the top secret sensitive compartmentalized information clearance…Had I communicated this information not following the prescribed protocols I would have been prosecuted and imprisoned.”

      The US Justice system has a separate standard for the 1%. Ordinary people are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law, elites like Hillary are not.

  2. While I agree with some of your statements, I do not despise Trump to the extent you seem to. You say Hillary Clinton, “at least has experience on her side”, but what experience? It seems that her experience has been years of ego-building at the expense of everyone around her. It is documented that she committed assault and battery on Bill Clinton while he was the sitting president. Her experience includes acquiring many billions of dollars in the short time since she left the White House, when according to her, she was broke. That could only have come through the exercise of massive corruption, including “play for pay” schemes involving the Clinton Foundation while Secretary of State. She is despised by everyone who ever had any direct contact with her. The Obama White House stopped the Justice Department from doing any investigation of the Clinton Foundation, in spite of a formal request from the FBI.
    So our choices are a buffoon who will quickly find the constitutional limits on the power of the Presidency and the need to placate Congress to get anything done (if the cowards in Congress ever find their balls), and a proven, if not convicted, multiple felon and sociopath who has stated she wants to regulate the “Bill of Rights” such that it no longer has any real meaning.
    The one thing I absolutely agree with you on is the need to have a “None of the above” choice on all election ballots for public office. If “None of the above” wins, the entire slate of candidates should be disqualified from running for that office ever again. That alone would eliminate 80-90% of the dead wood and greed grafters in DC.

  3. “Donald J. Trump is arguably the worst Presidential candidate in history (or at least in modern times)”

    I respect arguments that Trump will be one of the worst Presidents if those arguments are well-thought out and based on logic. But as a Presidential candidate, Trump is one of the best ever. Don’t get me wrong, running for executive office, and fulfilling the duties of executive office are completely different skill sets. So my point that Trump is a great Presidential candidate in no way asserts any ability at all when it comes to actually being President. Obama was a much better campaigner than chief executive.

    If you want to talk about worst Presidential candidates, we can talk about any number of people who couldn’t generate much interest, couldn’t attract crowds, and couldn’t formulate compelling policy positions that challenged the status quo. Trump is the exact opposite of that. The CHB article that highlighted Melania’s questionable US citizenship clearly showed that immigration law was a widely ignored joke in the 1990s. Trump changed all that. For the first time, Americans are actually thinking and arguing about what it really means to be an American, and whether immigrants actually become American or if they just establish their own homeland within American borders. This is a good conversation to have.

  4. The rw media has been vilifying Hillary for 30 years. According to them, she has done absolutely nothing right during that time. Something was bound to take…..

    • Clinton is tough enough to take on the Republicans in a way that Obama never could — part of the complicated deal he made with the people who elected him was that he would never, ever be an Angry Black Man. He’s a nice, very cool guy, and someone who really enjoyed being President. Nobody was afraid of him. But everybody knows that Hillary is a bitch, and the wingnuts are scared to death of her. They’ve good reason to be so unrelenting and unfair in their attacks. They’ll be hanging on her every word in the first debate waiting for that legendary cough their media has been going on about for months — it will prove to them that she’s going to die in office, maybe of TB or consumption! But she’s going to be our Margaret Thatcher and take back at least some of the ground Our Side has been losing steadily since before 2000.

      • It was the Clintons that transformed the democratic party into Republican Lite. Is that the side you’re talking about?

        • The sort of “socialism lite” bellowed about by Birdie Sanders is something a majority of Americans will support only if somebody else is paying for it. Americans are so against socializing anything of substance and despise anything “public” so much — after all, somebody other than nice white people might unduly benefit! — they need corporations in California to mediate “sharing” for them. “Republican lite” at least is at least a realistic alternative to fascism for this racist, redneck country.

  5. “During those five decades, I have not seen a more disgusting political debacle as Campaign 2016.”

    Really Doug? I guess you did hurt that head of yours in that bike accident years back.

    I clearly remember the ugliness of the Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush and Ross Perot election. The ugliness of the Al Gore George W. Bush election. The ugliness of the George W. Bush John Kerry election. The ugliness of the Obama McCain election and the ugliness of the Obama Mitt Romney election.

    They were all just as disgusting and ugly as the current one and the hate posted both here on Capital Hill Blue and your other site Reader Rant was just as intense.

    It’s the nature of the human species. That is to say, we love to hate.

    • The most evil in my recollection was Bush v. Gore. One can only hope that Justice Scalia has found himself in a place wherein his actions redound upon himself. J.

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