Thanks, Third Party Voters. This One’s On You

I am completely tired of the never-ending 2016 election post-mortems but this latest blockbuster from McClatchy bears discussing:

By Election Day, an automated Kremlin cyberattack of unprecedented scale and sophistication had delivered critical and phony news about the Democratic presidential nominee to the Twitter and Facebook accounts of millions of voters. Some investigators suspect the Russians targeted voters in swing states, even in key precincts.

Russia’s operation used computer commands knowns as “bots” to collect and dramatically heighten the reach of negative or fabricated news about Clinton, including a story in the final days of the campaign accusing her of running a pedophile ring at a Washington pizzeria.

What this McClatchy piece reveals is what we’ve all long suspected: that the barrage of fake news and out-of-context emails released by WikiLeaks wasn’t a “document dump,” it was a surgically precise operation aimed at a specific audience in targeted voting districts. The audience was the far left and “independent” voters, not the far right and conservatives. Conservatives were already signed on to Trump; his support was baked in early. No, this slanderous smear campaign against Hillary Clinton — stuff like this false claim that the Clinton Foundation paid for Chelsea’s wedding — was pushed at what I call the “clothespin crowd,” people who would only vote for Hillary with a clothespin on their nose and needed just a tiny nudge to go third party.

These people found Trump odious — I think most voters did. I think it was clear that Trump’s support was maxed out at number insufficient to win him the White House, no matter what. Trump wasn’t going to get more people to vote for him. What he needed was to peel away Hillary’s support to third parties. You know that old piece of Sun Tzu wisdom, “when your enemy’s forces are united, separate them”? This was that. Oldest trick in the book.

So thanks to all of you Gary Johnson, Evan McMullin, Jill Stein and write-in voters for playing along. You were the audience for a Russian propaganda campaign, and you let yourselves be duped. Thanks to you, we ended up with this shit show. Fuck you and your principles, I hope they keep you warm at night now that we have a Supreme Court stacked so far to the right the entire nation is at risk of toppling over. Fuck you and you principles as healthcare is snatched away from millions and an iceberg the size of Delaware is headed for our shores. But Hillary gave a speech to Goldman Sachs so, you know, same difference. Fuck you all.

What I find just so amazing, despite all of this, is that Hillary still got more votes. She took on the far-left Bernie purists and Susan “give me revolution but don’t make me miss my pilates class” Sarandon types. She took on the Republican Party, which has been slandering her for 20 years. She took on Vladimir fucking Putin. She took on voter suppression in places like Wisconsin, which targeted the Democratic base. And she still got more votes! (News flash to progressives: you are not the Democratic Party base. You thought you were? You’re not. The Democratic Party base is people of color, African Americans, Latinos. Welcome to the new liberal world order. Try reaching out to these folks because right now, I’m not seeing a lot of love between white BernieProgs and political POC.)

Hillary got more votes despite all these things, but the precision with which the Russian propagandists unleashed their bot army allowed them to target those swing districts. And here we are today, with a president who “won” the Electoral College and lost the popular vote.

So thanks, third party voters. This one’s on you.

35 Comments

Filed under 2016 Presidential Election

35 responses to “Thanks, Third Party Voters. This One’s On You

  1. Perry Aubric

    Amen to this. All those hysterical anti-Hillary comments on blogs from “liberals,”, all that fake news, all that election subversion was Russian generated to get their clueless nitwit puppet Trump elected. And enough fell for it to get us into this nightmare. Fuck every one of those third party voters (along with my usual, pro forma big “fuck you” to the racist, willfully ignorant lying nitwits who support Trump anyway). And, while we’re at it, fuck not-a-Democrat Bernie Sanders and his entitled little shit supporters, who angrily paved the way for the nation’s worst debacle since the Civil War..

    If there is anything more odious, stupid and annoying than one of those self-righteous damn fools who voted for a totally incompetent idiot like Jill Stein (i.e., the same stupid shits who voted for the arrogant asshole Ralph Nader in 2000), I cannot imagine who it might be. Maybe Kellyanne Conway. Maybe.

    • democommie

      I’m still getting the “Hilz is a terrible person; the Clinton’s are EXACTLY like, I don’t know, HITLER; Trumpligulamygdala is bad, but Hilz is WAY WORSE!” shit from people who get their political education from the blogs instead of fucking HISTORY.

      Democrat, Republican,Whig,Federalist are all labels that mean nothing except when you’re in the little black curtained booth.

      Basically, for the last 40 or so years, when it’s time to vote; I weigh the options, consider the candidates and their “platforms” (platforms which ARE shape-shifing aliens–or appear to be once the election is over), assess the candidates and their promises and contrast those promises with the candidates past voting record and then vote for anyone with a “D” after their name (unless I know they’re phonies–like BernGarJill) or, if there are no dems running–the closest thing to a dem that is an independent.

      The DNC is composed of professional fund-raisers and people who ONLY tell lies when it’s important, which is ALWAYS. They are venal, horrible, untrustworthy, cowardly, tone-deaf, thieving, fucking scum. And yet–they are NEVER as bad as the person who is running against them with an (R) after their name or as a “Conservative, Liberty, Freedom” or other jingobullshit label.

      I cannot make people do anything, but I sure as hell can make sure that I don’t agree with them when they have nothing but wishes and dreams to counter cold, hard electoral facts.

  2. Bob Fischer

    Your theory that it was the left’s fault that Hillary lost only holds true if you discount the 20-30 million of us that voted for Hillary in the general (as a second choice and the better candidate) as meaningless. If the DNC continues to demonize those of us that advocate single-payer, pension reform and living wages, they will continue to lose. Clinton lost because she left her base, not because her base left her. The Russians were just smart enough to recognize that most voters are stupid and they found a way to capitalize on that.

    • Perry Aubric

      That’s just ridiculous. What does this “only hold true” if those votes are considered meaningless? Your comment is nonsense.

      Hillary held her base. Her base beat the crap out of Bernie in the primaries. Her base delivered a 3 million vote popular majority. It was these duped-by-the-Russians Hillary-is-the-same-as-Trump all-or-nothing pie-in-the-sky Bernie-or-bust I-must-have-my-way-like-mommie-always-says self-righteous don’t-vote-or-vote-for-Stein fools that elected Trump.

    • I didn’t say it was the left’s fault. I said 3rd party voters. I don’t think Gary Johnson voters were necessarily the left. I know Republicans who voted for Johnson because they hated Trump but stupidly couldn’t bring themselves to vote for the only other viable candidate running. Johnson is an unqualified idiot.

  3. You’re right. It bears recounting. When I heard about the Pizzagate thing, I just laughed. What could be more patently ridiculous?

    I’m not sure that the far left and libertarian voters were stupid enough to believe that.

    But what did happen was that the Russians, with the conduit of Julian, (I hate America,) Assange, did was probably the most damaging. All of the claptrap about killing Bernie’s chances at the convention…

    Debbie Wasserman Schultz fell on her sword. Even though she did nothing wrong. Her privacy was violated. I called out my less woke bloggy friends. Don’t even read leaked e-mails.

    It was on this blog that I asked a hardcore Bernie Bot if he would vote for HRC if Bernie lost the primary. Maybe you remember his response.

    It was a fucking convention. The Dems could do whatever they hell they pleased. I would pretend that I was happy that Jimmy Carter was out of the picture. But the news today shows what a wonderful man he was and is. No matter how much his old-boy politics hated a HRC campaign he is a decent human being.. Maybe he just hated Clintons. That’s what Mrs. Junior tried to tell me.

    But no matter to all of my personal rants.

    You’re damn right it was all of those stupid libertarian or Jill Stein loving or just plain deluded Bernie Bots that more or less killed this thing. That and the general lack of concern on the part of millenials. They only had a 50% voter turnout. That’s probably less than the eighteen-year old voter turnout.

    May the Goddess bless Egalia and the Tennessee Guerilla Women.

    • Jim in Memphis

      “Debbie Wasserman Schultz fell on her sword. Even though she did nothing wrong.” Didn’t she leak the questions to one of the debates to Clinton? I mean yes the Dems can do whatever they want to select their candidate, but if you are pretending to hold a neutral primary aren’t you somewhat committed to making it actually be neutral?

  4. So Bob Fischer. You’re one of the guys that held your nose and voted for Hillary?

    Thank you for small favors.

  5. Just one more thing Bob,

    There were certainly not thirty million dicks and dickettes that voted for HRC as a second choice or the lesser of two evils.

    Where the fuck did you come up with that number?

    Thanks for playing.

    • Thanks for pointing that out. It’s taken as a matter of faith by the far left that 1) everybody hates Hillary; 2) they are the Democratic Party base; 3) only the man who lost the primary by 3 million votes can save us now, if only we do everything he says.

  6. I’ve said before, MOST Bernie supporters voted for Hillary. I know one Bernie voter who, after Trump secured the nomination, quit her job to work on Hillary’s campaign full-time in North Carolina. She was that scared of Trump and knew her past Bernie support would allow her to communicate with those Bernie folks. So obviously this post isn’t directed at them.

    I do find it interesting that Bob Fischer saw a post that talked about “3rd Party voters” and immediately went to “far-left.”

    • Bob Fischer

      Single payer, pension reform and living wages aren’t far left. They are working class issues.

      • Bob Fischer

        ….and the workers that were worried about them went largely to Trump. Mistakenly I might add.

      • That’s actually not true. Hillary won white working class voters who said economic issues were their #1 concern. Google is your friend.

      • Bob Fischer

        From your source Beale…….

        “White working-class Americans generally believe that President Donald Trump, rather than Hillary Clinton, better understands the problems facing their community. “…….

        Indeed, google is my friend.

      • Why not post the entire paragraph, not just one sentence:

        “White working-class Americans generally believe that President Donald Trump, rather than Hillary Clinton, better understands the problems facing their community. However, neither candidate garners a majority saying he or she understands white working-class problems well. Only about four in ten white working-class Americans believe Trump understands the problems facing their community either very (16%) or somewhat well (26%), compared to a slim majority (51%) who say he does not understand their problems well. Fewer than one-third of white working-class Americans say Clinton understands their community’s problems either very (10%) or somewhat (22%) well. More than six in ten (62%) say that she does not really understand the problems facing their community.”

        Also, those “problems” are not economic. They are cultural. They are immigration and race, not economics. If you read the whole piece.

        “Economic hardship. Notably, while only marginally significant at conventional levels (P<0.1), being in fair or poor financial shape actually predicted support for Hillary Clinton among white working-class Americans, rather than support for Donald Trump. Those who reported being in fair or poor financial shape were 1.7 times more likely to support Clinton, compared to those who were in better financial shape."

        Why don’t you just admit that Donald Trump’s message was racist, and your hero Bernie Sanders is, too. I dare one of the ardent Bernie Bros to go into a black community and ask them if they’re more affected by police brutality or Wall Street CEO salaries.

  7. democommie

    “if you discount the 20-30 million of us that voted for Hillary in the general (as a second choice and the better candidate) as meaningless”

    I’m glad that Flying Junior picked up on this before I did. I didn’t want to be the only person telling Bob Fischer that he’s completely full of shit on that.

    Also:

    “Single payer, pension reform and living wages aren’t far left. They are working class issues.”

    AND?

    WTF is is with you? You hate Hilz that much? You STILL buy into all of the bullshit that was peddled by homegrown and foreign agens provocmanure? What?

  8. bernard

    everybody lost. not just Hillary. working people had not much of a choice and they lost, too. blaming others is so speculative. so easy. easy to be hard. judge lest ye be judged. maybe they didn’t see any difference in the end result. thieves are not known to have any respect for the working class. aka no honor among thieves. yes they both are thieves, lol.

    Hillary was who the Democrats’ choice to “beat” Trump WAS a very Bad Choice, Democrats. some of the people voted by not voting. the working class had no “real” choice. a Frankenstein or a Hillary aka …. some choice.

    fighting and not choosing to win is a sure fire attention getter. but you still won’t win, period. dividing the working people into us vs them works when you know how to “sell” it. we lost the minute we became “consumers” instead of Citizens.

    it amazes me some people couldn’t see Hillary couldn’t scare enough people about Trump. Better selling points might have helped helped. after all this is America. we are sold, people, to the highest bidder, courtesy from Congress’s owners. the Senators, et al, are just their reps, not ours.

    Hillary from Goldman Sachs vs Trump from Russia with Love,

    now is that a “match” made by “The Mad Men?” Does Madison Ave. know how to sell or what?.

    to blame indebted,hungry and becoming poorer by the elections, mostly uneducated Americans for Trump is one heck of a wish. despite the myriad and overwhelming reasons why.

    maybe enough people will get mad enough to demand paper ballots.
    maybe not though, the entertainment is definitely, “From Russia with Love”

  9. Bob Fischer

    I work at UPS. I’m used to the beatdown style of management and message shaping. I get it. But what we saw in the last election is that people want change. Unless the DNC gets it we will keep losing. That’s just the way it is. People have had enough. They want governing from government. If I was as full of shit as you people claim I am, Hillary would have won. As long as you keep believing you are right, you will keep losing. Listen to the base, instead of lecturing them.

    • Tamara G Shepherd

      What Bob said–and more. Yes, SB, in the days following the general, every news source out there was screeching that third party voting had snatched the election from Clinton. However, every news source out there was inexplicably lumping together the votes cast for Gary Johnson and the votes cast for Jill Stein AS IF ALL OF THESE VOTES WERE CAST BY DEM VOTERS WHO SHOULD HAVE VOTED FOR CLINTON.

      Then and now, the suggestion that the 3.27% of voters supporting Libertarian Gary Johnson in the general were disaffected Dems is nonsensical. If you have some *concrete evidence* that disaffected Dems comprising the farthest left members of the party for some reason chose at that juncture to support a far right Libertarian, it’s past time to cough it up.

      It’s an allegation that even a year later remains unsubstantiated and it completely defies reason.

      • Tamara G Shepherd

        The other part of your allegation that defies reason is that even third party voting for Jill Stein (or other progressive candidates) cost Clinton the general in every state. It’s simply not true in TN, nor is it true in many other states in which the popular vote ran deep red. In TN, we have only to look at the Republican vote share to see at a glance that votes cast for Stein and other progressive third party candidates mattered not one whit in the ultimate electoral college vote here, as these votes most certainly could not have made up Clinton’s 26% shortfall.

        On the contrary, in this and many deep red states voters unable to effect a win for a candidate other than Trump simply cast their ineffectual “fuck you” votes, if only to direct to the Dem party our deep dissatisfaction that our party leaders hadn’t recognized a New Deal Dem when he bit them in the ass.

        For the math-challenged, a chart breaking down TN’s general election voting by party here:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_presidential_election_in_Tennessee,_2016

    • democommie

      Bernard:

      You don’t say who you voted for. I’m guessing not Hilary.

      BernGarJillbros are STILL so fucking pissed off at being treated like the the marginal candidates they were promoting were going to beat Trumpligulamygdala that they will in all likelihood seek a way to put more of their champions–candidates who have no chance of taking votes away from R’s but a very good chance at hurting D’s–on state and Congressional ballots in the mid-terms.

      The GOP has proven to be adept at wooing people who hate, suppressing the votes of those who don’t and gerrymandering the hell out of voting districts–at all levels.

      Looking to get a presidential candidate YOU like that has a chance of winning? Start with dog officers and library boards. Yeah, it’s that simple.

      Hilary from Goldman-Sachs v Trump from Russia with conniving AND Goldman-Sachs and Exxon and other people in cabinet and department managment positions that are the worst choices for the job.

      Yeah, Hilary and Trump are EXACTLY the same.

    • democommie

      Goddamn WordPress and blogwhore and all the rest of them.

      That previous comment was not meant to post under Bob Fischer. Not that it doesn’t largely apply.

      I just don’t know Bernard–so I’m giving him some slack.

      Bob Fischer:

      WHO are your candidates? Who do you propose to put in the next election? Are you organizing for the elections that are 16 months or so from now? Do you have a war chest filled with Benjamins–to buy ads and fund opposition research?

      Trumpligulalamygdala got elected by something like 30% of the electorate/16% of the population of the U.S.

      Most of the people who voted for Trumpligulamygdala did so because they’re selfish, stupid or spiteful–many of them having all three qualities.

      People who voted for 3rd Party candidate or–far worse–didn’t vote at all, ‘cuz teh hurt fee-fees? Well, you got what you want, CHANGE. It’s just not the good kind.

      • Bob Fischer

        To be honest, I’m stepping back. Most of what I’m able to offer is my writing, and frankly, I’m tired of people without a counterpoint thinking trying to beat me up is a productive response. I like Sanders, Joe, Elizabeth, Tulsi at the national level. No, I’m not involved and organizing. The last time I did that I was told in no uncertain terms that if I expected support from the democrats for my candidate, then he better bring them some cash. He was black, by the way, as were the people telling me how it was. I’ll keep voting, but I doubt I’ll be as active at promoting the candidate of my choice as I have been throughout my younger years. People involved in politics today don’t want to get things done, they want control.

  10. Gary Johnson voters? Nope. I was Bernie, then Hillary, as SB correctly notes that the majority of Sanders voters were. As for Tennessee, it really didn’t matter, sadly, as the majority of voters were voting for Trump as if he were the second coming.

    What I have yet to see, and WANT to see, is how many states that were swing, especially WI, MI and PA, what the numbers were for Stein voters, who are the only voters that MAY have given HRC a chance.

    Also, in those states, how much was turnout surpressed by the Voter ID laws passed by their GOP legislatures? How many people looked at the choices they had, and then, UNDERESTIMATING the damage that Trump would do, simply chose to stay home?

    And of course, how many folks in those states had voted twice for Obama but then voted for Trump on the idea he would blow things up? Know those answers and we will have a much better idea of what happened.

    The Obama -Trump voters are crucial not only for 2020 but 2018, which is as important, if not more so. Other than for research, 2016 is dead and buried.

  11. Tamara G Shepherd

    Good grief, SB. I just came over here at 11 pm, to see if you’d ever “approved” for posting my two comments from 9 am. Because I had linked a chart of just TN election results in one of my earlier two posts, I hadn’t really looked at your chart of national results until just now. I think you’d better look at it, too.

    What it says it that 3rd party candidate Gary Johnson took 4,489,235 votes nationally.

    It also says that all other 3rd party votes (from 28 other 3rd party candidates) *plus* all write-in votes totaled just 3,797,463 nationally.

    You said yourself that you “don’t think Gary Johnson voters were necessarily the left” and that’s certainly true. Those Johnson votes robbed Trump.

    What’s clear, then, is that the 4.4M Johnson votes hurt Trump far more than all the remaining 3.7M 3rd party *and* write-in votes combined hurt Clinton (not that there’s even any reason to think all of those 3.7M would have voted for her, anyway).

    Understand, then, that the 3rd party vote *helped* Clinton, not hurt her–because it robbed Trump of more votes than it robbed her.

  12. democommie

    “People involved in politics today don’t want to get things done, they want control.”

    It’s ever been thus.

    You’re upset because your candidates don’t get support from the dems? Start a third, eleventh or ninety-fifth party–AT THE GRASSROOTS level.

    Bernie attempted to do what Trumpliglamygdala succeeded in doing–hijacking the party for his own ends. Didn’t work out too well. Bernie had ZERO likelihood of winning the election–despite what the polls say.

    It’s a participatory democracy–that facsists and other authoritarians are better organizers and want to destroy the democracies which they gain control of notwithstanding. If you don’t want to participate, don’t. If you want to participate, go for it.

    Don’t lecture me and offer nothing but hurt feelings as “reasons” for dropping out. That’s bullshit.

  13. I should have read this a few days ago. I’ve been looking at the lefty mags, The Nation, The Progressive, In These Times, Mother Jones and they’re still at it, slamming Hillary Clinton and those alleged to be her flunkies in the DNC and elsewhere. In These Times just put up an article by their man in New Zealand, Branko Marcetic, blaming Hillary’s loss on her being too “centrist” – in other words refusing to adopt the guaranteed looser positions that such play-lefties demand.

    I’ve become convinced that it’s as possible that parts of the “leftist” media are in the pay of Putin as much as the Breitbart right. Large parts of it played the same role in this last election and I’ll bet such figures would come much cheaper. Jill Stein is someone I’m sure of being on that payroll, at least through RT if not directly.

    If you want a good chuckle, go over to the Green Party’s website and read their election results, nationwide they won about 31 seats, all on the local level, many of those races either uncontested or in non-partisan races. I’m an advocate of Democrats joining the Greens to take it over and end it.

  14. Well-spoken Anthony.

    After blogging back and forth with reps of the left and right on this blog, I got to thinking, “Was it really only through super delegates that Hillary beat Bernie in the democratic primary of 2016?”

    Well, after I heard some Russian Trumpista actually sound-bit on NPR on about how Bernie actually won, but Hillary got the nod…

    No brothers and sisters, not exactly. Hillary won very nearly 17 million popular votes in the 2016 primaries, very nearly the historic number of votes she won running against President Moses.

    Bernie, may the Goddess bless his days, garnered just over 13.2 million popular votes. Hillary won the delegate count by over 1,000 delegates, well over the seven hundred or so super delegates.

    So, don’t forget that, Hillary haters.

    • democommie

      And cue the people blaming the dems for having “closed primaries” where you have to be registered to vote and registered as a member of a party to vote in the primaries.

      I don’t like it either, but I like it a lot better than gerrymandered districts that are set up only to guarantee party gridlock and voter suppression to name but 2 of the GOP’s projects to MAGA.

      • Perry Aubric

        I am just fine with closed primaries. Why should people who are not Democrats decide who the Democratic nominee will be. (Same for the Republicans.) And why did and should the Democratic Party allow blowhard Bernie Sanders, a guy who was never and is not today a Democrat, who spent his career defeating and demeaning and criticizing the Democratic Party, a guy who ran against Democrats, to run in its primaries.

        The Bernie Bots on the final day of the primaries, when Hillary won California by a huge margin and several other states, still screamed how Bernie deserved the nomination by virtue of his hundred vote victory in the North Dakota caucuses.

        And yes, she won the nomination fair and square by beating the shit out of Sanders in the primaries by 4 million votes, and she would have won without any of the super delegates.

        I am past tired of this notion that Hillary Clinton left her “base,” as if the 17 million people who voted for her somehow don’t count as her base, and only Bernie voters are really the base of the Democratic Party. Except, of course, Bernie is not a Democrat.

  15. Joseph Novak

    Fuck me? Fuck you. I have the right to vote OR NOT VOTE for whoever the hell I want. Just because I didn’t vote for your candidate ( and I didn’t… I ALSO didn’t vote for the other candidate ), and you think Hillary lost because of me? Maybe she lost because she wasn’t a good enough candidate. Maybe , once again, the Democratic party was so full of itself, it thought it was so much better than the other party, they didn’t give a shit WHO the put on the ticket. My God, you lost to Bush II because your candidate had the personality of a dead frog. He was a lifeless candidate with no personality and he couldn’t beat George Fucking Bush and since then, your fucking party hasn’t learned a damn thing. You try to shove a divisive candidate with a lot of baggage ( not even including that she was a carpet bagger just to get her Senate seat in a state that she didn’t live in previously ) down the people’s throats and are upset that we don’t want her type of bullshit… Did I vote for Trump? No, I didn’t, but I bet a lot of people did because they were just sick of the crap that BOTH the Democrats AND Republicans have been trying to feed us over the past 40 or more years. It’s gotten worse and worse and the Democrats got caught with their pants down. Then you have the nerve to tell me, ” Fuck you”? Really? If you want your party to win a fucking presidential election, give me something better than Hillary. You managed to get by with Obama because he SEEMED reasonable, HAS a personality AND, let’s face it, is Black. It worked for you. He was a decent president. Was he great? Personally, I don’t think so, but he was better than either of these two clowns that were facing off this past election. This is the equivalent of being able to put away a team in basketball, but instead not playing well and letting the other team be close enough where, oh my God, a last second 3 pointer went in, and now your team lost.

    Don’t be blaming me because YOUR party fucked up and didn’t finish off the other party by picking a BETTER DAMN candidate. Now, we all have to suffer because the Democratic party thinks its shit doesn’t stink. If you think differently, you might want to think again.

    • Nah. I’m blaming you. My candidate won the popular vote despite being up against the Republican Party, gerrymandering, Voter ID, Vladimir Putin and the Bernie Left. Suckit.