I've been a freelance writer focusing on movies, hiking, stamps, volleyball, and politics.
Every day in the media, there are stories about the presidential election. If you were to look at their content, you would find that a high percentage deal with something offensive Donald Trump said and something shady Hillary Clinton did.
Consider this election, framed:
- On the one hand, you have Trump, a crass and vile human being with thin skin and a penchant for holding grudges. The Clinton campaign subtly tried to link him to Putin in some Communist ploy.
- On the other hand, you have Hillary Clinton, portrayed as an extraordinarily dishonest figure, and not only by the Trump campaign. Much of her perception is of her own doing. The politicizing of the Benghazi incident, the e-mail scandal, the primary election deceit, the ties to lobbyists: These are a few examples of many that have dogged her.
All of this leads to the question: How can anyone bring themselves to support her?
Trump vs. Clinton: The Issues
In considering who to vote for in this election, there are many different factors to evaluate each individual. When looking at these factors, some will weigh more heavily on each person casting a vote. Some of these issues are going to have more impact than others. Let's take a look at some that might affect a person's ability to support Hillary Clinton.
Reasons Not to Vote for Clinton
1. Trump Lies...But So Does Clinton
For those that believe the leader of the free world should be inherently honest, bad news. Neither of the two major party candidates have a very good affiliation with telling the truth.
Politifact, a web site that follows the election, has stated that Donald Trump is incorrect with around 91% of the things he says. Whether this is done purposefully or because he is a blustery fool has yet to be determined. Some might be convinced he's just a real-life wind-up doll that when he gets on a podium, he starts to spew babble and we never know what tangent he will end up going down next.
On the other hand, Clinton's deceit is more calculated. She seems unable to admit to the truth of the fact that Benghazi was portrayed as something it wasn't to avoid a downturn in an election year. She was called out by FBI Director Comey for lying about how many devices she used in her e-mail scandal and the content of those e-mails. And anyone who really believes that the Democratic primary was run on the up and up should enroll immediately at Trump University so that they can become millionaires.
Say what you will about John Kasich and Bernie Sanders being ho-hum guys, but at least everyone knew they were honest and had scruples.
2. Trump Won't Help People, But Clinton Might Be Worse
The president should be someone who puts party aside once elected and works for the people of the country. All the people. Say what you will about Obama's faults, but the man tried to take care of the citizenry.
With all the stories about Donald Trump and the fraudulent activities of his various businesses, it's really hard to get behind the fact that he really does want to help the average citizen. Even his tax plan comes off as a huge benefit to the wealthy and not a big help to the middle class.
With Hillary, she has used her political career to advance her wealth. The links between her foundation and special interest, foreign nations, and other backroom favors is immense. It's really hard to believe that she would be much better than Trump in trying to work for the poor and middle class as opposed to the wealthy donors that have supported her.
Trump would do it out of self-interest, something he is exceptional at, while Hillary would do it as payback. Either way, America loses out by not have Bernie as the Democratic nominee.
3. The DNC's Corruption
This is where Trump has an edge. Trump earned his party's nomination outright. He threw enough mud, tapped into repressed anger, and riled up the country's fears so much that he rose to popularity. There is some serious discontent with him within his own party, but at the end of the day, they gave the man what he earned.
On the Democratic side, there were widespread articles written about voter fraud in places like Colorado and California. How votes were tossed out, people who had died were voting for Clinton, and other voter suppression of Bernie supporters.
Then Wikileaks hacked into the Democratic National Party and pulled back the curtain on Debbie Wasserman-Schulz and her bias towards Clinton. A neutral party it was not and Clinton reaped the rewards of that relationship. For Sanders supporters, it was an additional slap in the face when Wasserman-Schulz was added into the Clinton campaign staff immediately after being ousted from the Democratic Party.
The GOP aimed to unite the party against Clinton at their convention and did a decent job of it. No solutions to real-world problems, just a united front against the other party's nominee.
Clinton got every major player on the Democratic side on board to speak positively about her and her ability to run the country, including Sanders. It was a powerful message that festered, mostly in the negative against an unstable Trump. But for many, the primary election corruption was too much to bear and those voters are looking at third party options.
Are There Any Saving Graces?
With so many reasons to hesitate in supporting Clinton, are there things that will overcome the trepidation? For many voters, there certainly are some.
Issues-Based Voting. With both candidates being so flawed in terms of their character, many voters might just vote based upon the issues. As odious as it will be to put either Trump or Clinton into the most powerful position on the planet, what they stand for in terms of policy might align better with people.
Pro-life, anti-trade, smaller government voters will most certainly go with Trump. Pro-environment, anti-gun, pro-choice voters will certainly flock to Clinton.
In terms of the message of each campaign, Trump is trying to be the new Sheriff in town. The man who can clean up the streets and deport the illegal aliens to help bolster the economy for citizens of this country. Clinton is trying to be the inclusive candidate, embracing a melting pot of culture and giving people a pathway to citizenship.
Both messages have merit and voters really don't have much middle ground between the candidates in terms of policy. They don't really agree on much if anything which should help voters who want to vote on the issues.
Fear. Fear can be a popular motivator and the Democrats have sewn enough fear into their populace about what might happen during a Trump presidency. He has been portrayed as short-tempered, unstable, and thin-skinned. Hardly qualities citizens want to see in their President.
Trump continues to play into that fear with every remark he makes that hints at violence, such as the Second Amendment comment he made recently. We had a war-monger in Bush and we lost 4,000 American lives to date and nearly bankrupted the country. For many, that's not a path we want to go down again soon. Of the two candidates, Trump is likeliest to get us into another war.
The fear of a Clinton presidency is that she will cater to special interests or that she is too inept to do a good job. While she has been First Lady, a Senator, and Secretary of State, the case that she really didn't accomplish much in those roles has some validity.
This election is going to be painful in terms of its negativity and it's doubtful that whoever gets elected will get much support from Congress. As a liberal, it's really hard to stand behind someone like Hillary Clinton who has lied so frequently to the public about things. Honesty is such an important quality in any leader you follow and we just don't have that in our candidates.
While there are things to be liked about a candidate such as Donald Trump and his outsider status, it may be too much of a reach to lend him any support though. Liberals tend to be inclusive, embracing other cultures and that certainly is not Trump. Liberals tend to support environmental protections and that certainly is not Trump. Liberals tend to support a government that tries to economically support a vast majority of the population and that is certainly not Trump.
In the end, the not Trump thought will dictate the vote for many liberals and that's the sad statement about this election and the candidate that will garner our vote - Hillary Clinton.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
Credence2 from Florida (Space Coast) on February 08, 2019:
Hillary Clinton had so much baggage with trying to straddle the fence with emerging Democratic Constituency on the populist left, who supported Sanders verses the Mainstream gladhanders represented by her VP choice who was more than willing to get into bed with the Wall Street crowd while trying to remain relevant to those that were suspicious of the "big money" folks. You can't have it both ways and as a result she lost both. It would have been unbelievable that anyone could lose to Donald Trump, but because she was trying to serve two masters, she did.
The Democratic party is moving in a populist direction, many conservatives are saying extreme left. the Old Guard or Mainstreamers of the Democrat party establishment ignore this to their peril, so Joe Biden won't do. I would say it is more like, business as usual will no longer do. It is part of the same forces that rose Trump to the Presidency from the Right.
Credence2 on July 04, 2018:
No, Valeant, you were not the only liberal to see HC as less than a desirable candidate. She had a slew of baggage and was too busy trying to gather votes from moderate Republicans to see the elephant in the room. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren are the best representatives of where the party needed to be moving. It is unfortunate that the "machine" could not be deactivated in time.
Sorry that I am a little late, but this a great article, thanks....
JOC (author) from Syracuse, NY on January 20, 2018:
The Dems chose the budget because that is when they have the most leverage, not because they wanted to make a choice between children and Americans. The GOP didn't really consult with the Dems during the tax bill, so there's a history of them just ignoring the party, so it was now or never for DACA.
Brad on January 20, 2018:
The DACA tied to the budget was the Democrat strategy to stop Trump from getting his Wall, his stopping Chain Migration, and using the Merit Based immigration.
The democrats picked Illegal Aliens over America and Americans. It is as simple as that. Anything else is just red herring Demoganda.
JOC (author) from Syracuse, NY on January 20, 2018:
Before the Democrats made DACA an issue, Trump decided to end it. Why not just say to Congress, we need a more permanent solution and keep DACA in place until that time? Same with CHIP. GOP could have re-instituted it when it ran out, but chose not to for political purposes. We'll have to disagree that using children as a political football is in any way humane, but here we are. The GOP will give kids insurance to get something. For a party that claims to be pro-life, doesn't that just seem odd. I guess we might have to qualify that as pro-american-life now.
Second, while you can certainly have an opinion about what you think mixed-race people should be called, ultimately, it's probably better if we let them decide. You may think Pocohontas is appropriate too, but ask a Native American how they feel about using the term and it's a whole different perception.
Brad on January 20, 2018:
It has been a year now that Trump is president. And it seems like the latest is the government shutdown. Of course it is over NON White people DACA, but does that make it a white or not white issue. The issue is really American security, redoing the immigration versus rewarding ILLEGALS for breaking into our country.
The democrats put DACA which has a March 5, 2018 deadline ahead of all the people in the country and tied it to the budget. It is not a budget item to give illegals amnesty is it?
The TPS is unfortunately mostly non white countries, but to tie it to racist is ridiculous. As ridiculous for calling people that didn't like what Obama was doing a racism.
First of all, they were talking about what he did and didn't do, not about him personally. Second, I think it is racist for people to call him Black, when he is half Whtie.
Tom Lohr from Magdalena, NM on November 14, 2017:
Just found your hub so this is a year late. I'm not a liberal but had I been one the answer would have been yes. Once Hillary got the nomination I knew they had selected the only Democrat that could lose to Trump. The White House was theirs for the taking and they chose poorly.
JOC (author) from Syracuse, NY on October 16, 2016:
@Bradmasters - I could do a whole story on what is wrong with Trump. The idea of Trump is a good one, someone not tied to special interests. But not this man. He is only out for himself and white America. Plus, Republican economic policies have proven to fail. Cutting taxes without cutting government is not the answer.
bradmasters on October 15, 2016:
What is wrong with Trump?
Collins on September 24, 2016:
We're in need of a change because this two party system doesn't correctly represent American anymore. We have great runners in the third party, namely Gary Johnson under the libertarian ticket. However media nearly refuses to show us anyone other than the two chickens who are clawing at each other's eyes.
We have options but the two party system has been ingrained into our bones & unfortunately some are very unwilling to move beyond that. Some truly are okay as being a Democrat or a Republican & will continue to vote as such based on that (R) or (D) in their name. However America is so full of unique individuals that many of us do not inline with either side.
We're at a point where change needs to happen & electing a man or woman who can listen to our needs & the cries will of course be our first step. POTUS cannot make all our changes, as we have an extensive government as a check & balances, but it can be a snow ball effect.
Because at this point when we have people like Trump & people like Hilary as our options, we seriously need to prove that we're done. Two individuals who have long, dangerous, scandal filled histories should not be who we need to choose from. We need to fight to have the others more openly shown, given the same authority to debate on national TV. More wildly known of your options & not ridiculed or made to believe your vote doesn't count.
Wild Bill on August 22, 2016:
This speaks for ALL voters, not just Liberals. We deserve better and I think if these are our only two options then we should just scratch the process and start over. Sorry, I know this is not rational, but this is how I feel.
Earlene Hammond on August 20, 2016:
You are not the only one struggling, not by a long shot!
Mel Carriere from San Diego California on August 14, 2016:
I think the fact that Bernie Sanders was/is so ridiculously popular answers your hub's question might clearly. We were force fed the Clintons, nobody really likes them. Notice how everybody says the Clintons, plural. It's a package deal.
Yesterday I was reading a list of people associated with the Clintons who have died under mysterious circumstances. I'm not a conspiracy kook, but the number was mind boggling. If it was one or two I would say okay it was coincidence, let it rest, but there were about 25 people on this list. I don't know of any coincidence that defies those kind of odds. I'm not associated with anybody who has died under mysterious circumstances, nor do I know of anybody who knows anybody that has died or disappeared under mysterious circumstances. Where there's smoke there's fire? I don't know, it's scary.
On the other side of the aisle, people are suffering from serious post-convention Trump hangover. He was a fun circus sideshow act while he lasted, but now that people see he is the actual candidate, and he is not behaving any more Presidential than before, they are bailing out of his candidacy like its a Brazilian Olympic diving pool.
I think we are going to see the highest third party vote in history, hands down. Because of the electoral college system the third party candidates probably won't win any states, but perhaps it will serve as a wake up call that we want better choices. Great hub.