Could a Third Party Candidate Block the Path to 270?

This election cycle has been anything but conventional. Long time political strategists have been confounded with seismic voting shifts changing the very landscape of traditional patterns. There are several factors causing such a shift.

For one, a new and less institutionalized group of young millennials will participate in the process for the first time. This block of voters are less beholden to the two party system and are seeking to be heard. Also, this has been described as a “change election.” America has suffered through a long period of stagnant economic growth. Add to that the growing threats of terrorism and of progressive overreach in the judicial branch and you have a concoction for change.

Unfortunately, the American people who so desire change for our country ran into Donald Trump. His strong man tactics led to his ultimate victory in the primary, hijacking the change that many people are looking for. His antics have only grown more extreme and his character shown to be more disqualifying.

Many have now waved the white flag, believing the inevitable. I, however, woke this morning to an interesting idea. As I see it, Hillary Clinton has all that she needs to cruise right back to Pennsylvania Ave, this time as the President. As has been shared before, all she needs to do is win 4 key swing states: New Hampshire, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Colorado– all states that she has led by near double digits throughout the campaign. The path to 270 appears inevitable.

But, just as everything else unconventional this election cycle, I woke to a new poll that is charting a new map. Evan McMullin, a third party conservative candidate, has risen to a statistical tie in Utah, claiming 22-percent of the vote. Coupled with Utah, McMullin has a real shot at winning neighboring Idaho. If he wins both Utah and Idaho, he has an outside possibility of denying BOTH Clinton and Trump the 270 votes needed to claim victory.

If such chaos does transpire, the GOP controlled house would decide on the next president. Considering the current relations between the GOP and Trump, I am certain they would go another direction. They will either elevate McMullin or more likely choose a center-right candidate such as  John Kasich who stood against both Trump and Clinton throughout. Kasich would be a good bridge since he stands as a conservative on social issues and moderate on fiscal issues. He would rebuild the broken civil discourse and bring a much needed temperament to our nations highest office.

I think conservative minded leaders should invest resources in helping Evan win Utah, Idaho, and possibly other states. In my estimation this is the only way Hillary Clinton is not elected president on November 8th. Is it a long shot, probably. Is it improbable, absolutely. But I ask you, what else has gone a cording to plan in 2016?

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