Could Jill Stein’s Green Party presidential candidacy be the key to a Donald Trump victory in November? There has been a lot of talk about this election cycle’s third-party candidates, namely Jill Stein and Gary Johnson, and how a vote for either one could potentially sway the outcome 2016 presidential election. Even Donald Trump himself has said that he encourages voters who don’t want to cast their ballot for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton to vote for Jill Stein if they don’t want to vote for him.
According to Trump, reports The Hill, a vote for Jill Stein is a vote for Donald Trump. He made the following unequivocal statement at an Ohio rally earlier this year.
“I think a vote for Stein would be good — that’s the Green Party. Because I figure anyone voting for Stein is gonna be for Hillary. So I think vote for Stein is fine.”
In a nutshell, Jill Stein can’t win the election. She simply doesn’t have the poll numbers to indicate that she could carry anywhere near enough of the electoral college to secure the White House. What Jill Stein can do, however, is to split the progressive vote, giving Donald Trump the majority in November.
As Patheos reports, Jill Stein could be Donald Trump’s “secret weapon” come November, splitting the progressive base so drastically that Donald Trump is able to secure victory and four years in the White House, as well as the power to nominate appointed-for-life Supreme Court Justices — and, if progressives and liberals are to be believed, become the ultimate downfall of America.
While some progressives, many of whom were ardent supporters of Bernie Sanders in the primaries, believe that a vote for Jill Stein is a “protest vote” against Hillary Clinton or some kind of “pseudo vote” for Bernie Sanders himself, the facts don’t lie. In the current election cycle, a vote for Jill Stein is roughly the equivalent of a vote for Donald Trump.
The “worst nightmare candidate” of American liberals and progressives.
The reason we have lengthy primaries is they are supposed to weed out unqualified morons like Donald Trump, Jill Stein & Gary Johnson. Sigh.— Zachary Fedell (@zatchry) September 29, 2016
My classmate just announced on Facebook that after seeing the debate he's dropping Jill Stein to back Hillary. *makes check mark in the sky*— I, Hoebot. (@eclecticbrotha) September 28, 2016
Just gonna throw this out there. If Jill Stein and Gary Johnson are the best third parties can do, maybe there’s a reason they lose.— Your Debate Binky (@Johngcole) September 29, 2016
I'm sorry I just can't tell the difference between the two candidates. Donald Trump and Jill Stein are basically the same.— Rachel Fisher (@TheRachelFisher) September 28, 2016
Even Bernie Sanders himself has begged his supporters not to “throw their vote away” on a third-party candidate, such as Jill Stein. As The Hill reports, Bernie believes that the ultimate goal of this election cycle for progressives should be preventing a President Donald Trump. He has repeatedly encouraged his supporters to cast their vote for Hillary Clinton in November to keep Donald Trump out of the White House.
“This moment in history for a presidential election is not the time for a protest vote.”
Despite a highly contentious primary campaign, Bernie Sanders himself has now endorsed Hillary Clinton for POTUS and has even reportedly been working with her on her campaign in an attempt to woo young progressives to her cause, as well as to encourage them not to potentially hand the election to Donald Trump by voting for Jill Stein or another third-party candidate.
In fact, many find the concept of Sanders’ supporters flocking to Jill Stein to be incredibly perplexing, as Stein herself reportedly offered Bernie a spot in her party, something Sanders rejected in a show of progressive solidarity with the Democratic presidential nominee.
Recently, U.S. election polls have indicated that Donald Trump and rival Hillary Clinton are running neck and neck, with Trump recently having gained some ground in critical swing states. Those are the states that a vote for Jill Stein could help Donald Trump and hurt Hillary Clinton the most.
According to the most recent Public Policy Polling poll, which was just released on September 29, a vote for Jill Stein could really help Donald Trump at this stage of the game. Among likely voters, Hillary Clinton leads Donald Trump by a mere four percentage points at 44 to 40 percent.
In that same poll, Jill Stein came in with just 1 percent and Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson with 6 percent.
If the poll took into consideration a two-candidate, Clinton/Trump face-off, Hillary Clinton would lead Donald Trump by 5 percent rather than 4.
While the numbers may seem inconsequential, they clearly illustrate the point being made by Bernie Sanders and many concerned progressives. Clearly, Jill Stein will not be the next president of the United States. However, in a close race, voting for Jill Stein could give Donald Trump the edge he needs to win.
[Featured Image by Win McNamee/Getty Images]