5 Conservative Reasons to Vote for Gary Johnson

There aren't just two names on the ballot in every single state — there are three. Libertarian Gary Johnson is an option everywhere, and contrary to popular wisdom, a vote for him is not a vote for Hillary Clinton — or for Donald Trump. (Here are 5 conservative reasons to vote for Trump and for Clinton.)

This is the third article in my series explaining why a thinking conservative can pull the lever for any of five presidential candidates, and I may be more convinced by this one than the others.

Yes, I know about Gary Johnson's infamous "What is Aleppo?" (which The New York Times actually screwed up on twice) and his second "Aleppo moment," where he could not name a foreign leader he respects. Forgive me, but I'd rather have an honest candidate who can't name a foreign leader he respects than two dishonest ones who could list off dozens. Johnson has some serious flaws, but he may be the least of three evils.

Here are the reasons to think so.

1. No, it's not a wasted vote. Johnson can win.

Want to vote twice? It's easy, and there's no fraud necessary. Just tell a Republican and a Democrat you're voting for Gary Johnson. Your Republican friend will tell you it's a vote for Clinton, and your Democrat friend will tell you it's a vote for Trump. Why? Because they think in binary terms.

But America doesn't need to think in binary — there is the slightest chance a third-party candidate can be sworn into the White House in January 2017. It's not easy, but here's what it looks like:

If Johnson wins just one state — his deep-blue home state of New Mexico, which he carried twice as a Republican candidate for governor — he can prevent Trump and Clinton from reaching 270 electoral votes, the majority that one of them needs to become president. In this case, voting moves to the House of Representatives.

At that point, House Democrats might have to admit that Clinton will never take the White House, and they could join with libertarian-minded Republicans to hand the office to a third-party candidate. No, this scenario is not likely, but it is entirely possible. And you thought this race couldn't get more interesting.

2. Honest Gary?

In a viral Facebook video which convinced 30,000 Republicans and Democrats to pledge to vote Libertarian, the narrator Abraham Lincoln declares, "if America is Gotham City, then Hillary is the mob and Trump is the Joker. ... America, picking between the Joker and the mob is not a real choice. It's time to vote for freaking Batman." As the video pointed out, Lincoln himself ran third party — in 1860.

But the real comparison between Gary Johnson and Abraham Lincoln isn't that they both ran third party. After the infamous Aleppo response, Johnson admitted his mistake, and said if voters considered it a disqualifier, "so be it."

I’ve been really well served in my life by always telling the truth. If you tell the truth, you don’t have to remember anything, and I think the one unforgivable in life is hypocrisy, saying one thing and doing another.

This humble honesty seems to pervade the Libertarian's campaign, and after the endemic lies of Hillary Clinton and the utter unreliability of Donald Trump, it's rather refreshing.

Johnson has served eight years as a Republican governor in a deep-blue state, and somehow he managed to do so without demeaning women (either in "locker room talk" or by denouncing "bimbo eruptions"), without lying to the American people about a terrorist attack, and without the blatant pandering both Clinton and Trump frequently resort to.

Next Page: An American success story.