In 2000, Ralph Nader ran for the position of president under the Green Party.
Though independent of its Democratic counterpart, the actions of Ralph Nader and his Green Party spelled doom for the left wing, taking the votes of stubborn independents and confused Democrats away from Gore and coining the phrase: “A vote for Nader is a vote for Bush.”
Statistics regarding the current Democratic presidential ticket reflect an even tie and a race that will likely continue until the last delegate has been committed and the last primary vote counted.
This perception of the will of the people implies that the nation is divided perfectly between the camps and that the Democratic candidates are equal in virtue and electoral chance.
This short-sighted view of the process could prove suicidal for the Democratic Party.
Though through some obscure circumstance Hillary has kept a relative tie with her opponent, this tie reflects only the collective opinion of Democratic voters, and the primary is the first and less important stage of the proverbial bigger picture.
If Hillary wins the primary, she loses the independent vote.
Several polls indicate that she holds less than a third of the trust of non-affiliated citizens, a grotesque 26 percent behind her opponent.
Not impressed? She trails him by 80 percent in the Republican preference polls, meaning not only will she not retain every Democratic vote, but the overwhelming majority of Independents and about every single American Republican would turn their backs, yet again, on the left wing.
For this reason Republicans are praying for a Clinton victory.
As Romney and Huckabee felt out their constituents’ sentiments towards their Democratic opponents, this was made unmistakably clear.
Romney’s attack against Obama following his victory in Iowa received cold shoulders and frowning faces, while his announced eagerness to “meet Hillary face to face” in the upcoming events received sustained applause.
According to conservative columnist Rich Lowry, “Obama may give inspiring speeches at campaign events thronged by thousands, but for Republicans, there’s only one candidate of hope: Hillary Rodham Clinton.”
In 2004 the Democratic Party ignored these same signs.
Marginalizing the two candidates with any hope of defeating the homo erectus on Pennsylvania Avenue, General Clark and Mr. Edwards, we instead focused on the party’s self-interest, sending the creepy, emotionless and distrusted Kerry to combat the wartime president.
We all know the end of this story. In light, then, of our recent history, our statistics, our polls and our electoral habits, I ask of my party this favor: Don’t shoot the donkey in the foot again
Don’t send a candidate to Washington who can’t win the war.
Don’t ignore the opinions of the opposition – not only do we need to compromise on a non-polarizing candidate (we are in this together, after all) but we need to send someone to the big event who can hold their own against the GOP.
And Hillary isn’t it. Remember, a vote for Hillary is a vote for McCain.
Phil Elder is a senior political science major. His column usually appears Wednesdays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.