Well, the day is finally upon us. Tuesday, November 8, 2016, is election day. I know, I know…you are so happy it is almost over, both candidates are terrible, you want a meteor to destroy the earth, yada yada yada. We have pretty much heard it all by now. We all just want the misery to end, like a kidney stone passing through Al Swearengen’s pee-hole without the benefit of any medicine stronger than whiskey to numb the pain.
As we bear down and push through one last day, before this Rosemary’s Baby of an election is delivered upon our weary country, this author has some parting thoughts to share before it is all over. These are not meant to sway, discourage, or encourage you. These are merely the final ruminations of an amateur political analyst and close follower of the last year’s-plus worth of cringe-inducing political shenanigans. These are things to make you go hmmm….
- In case you did not know, there is a former CIA clandestine service officer running for president by the name of Evan McMullin. He is running as an Independent, though he is basically a Republican. OK, not “basically,” he is a Republican. He felt the need to run so that there was at least one Republican choice on the final ballot (zing!). McMullin has a fighting chance of winning Utah, per recent polls, and he provides a comforting alternative for those in the GOP who cannot bring themselves to vote for Clinton or Trump.
- Gary Johnson is still out there running, although really, isn’t that guy kind of a goofball? The only things he has proven throughout this campaign—one that was ripe for a good third-party alternative—is that he does not know a lot about foreign affairs, and that he can make funny faces. What a wasted opportunity.
- Jill Stein is still out there too, as a Green Party candidate, though good God, she is worse than Johnson. Her brief foray into singing in a folk rock band is enough to disqualify her from office, alongside all her wacky notions about John Oliver, Syria, vaccinations, and Edward Snowden (among others). And, oh yeah, she is a member of the Green Party.
- Trump is riding out the last few days of the campaign in an admirable fashion, refusing to give up and taking it all the way down to the wire. You have to hand it to the guy, he proved he has the stamina to run for office, and the gumption to stick to his guns all the way to the finish line. If nothing else, he made a hard fight out of it all, and hell, he could even win. God knows I am not one who would predict he will go down in crushing defeat once all is said and done.
- Hillary Clinton. What can we say here? She has somehow overcome Benghazi, her private email server controversy, and her overall lack of natural political skills to place herself right on the doorstep of the presidency. Now that the FBI has (once again) cleared her of any crimes with regard to her emails, it seems that her path to victory is clear—if she and the Democratic Party can turn out their voters to bring it all home, that is. If you had asked me five years ago, I would have given her an almost zero percent chance of ever being elected president, just given her unpopularity with Republicans and many Democrats. My, how times have changed. She now appears to be the odds-on favorite to win, and that leaves us with the question of, “What can we expect over the next four years?”
Will Republicans get their shit together and nominate someone who can beat Hillary in 2020? Will she govern from the center, and try to bring the country together? Will she go left and ruin the country, as many Republicans fear? Will we all die a fiery death once the meteor strikes?
As trusty ol’ Al would say, “That’s the fucking sum and substance of it.”