Earlier this week was the first ever third party presidential debate. (For those of you who missed it, here’s the full video of it on Russia Today.)
I felt this single debate had more substance to it than the past three "official" debates combined. This was a debate where candidates and issues that were largely ignored by the mainstream media could be heard, where politicians with alternative viewpoints could discuss the real issues that mattered most to Americans: campaign finance reform, student debt, drug prohibition, and the indefinite detention in the NDAA 2012.
Here’s a rundown of the candidates that appeared that night and my thoughts on them:
Gary Johnson (Libertarian Party): Anyone who follows my blog will know that this is the man I have been rooting for. Ever since the Good Doctor lost the nomination to Mittens, this is the man I have dedicated my vote to. And he did not manage to disappoint in the debate. He clearly ran upon his record, claiming that he "vetoed more legislation than the other 49 legislators in the county combined." Every moment he spoke, he delivered a real zinger, and for that, he received the most applause. (Especially when he mentioned Ron Paul!) Clearly he was the most popular that evening. His best line: “A wasted vote is a vote for a person you do not believe in.”
Jill Stein (Green Party): This was the other third party candidate whom I knew about before this debate, and the other one that I somewhat support. I don’t agree with 60 percent of what she stands for, but the other 40 percent I agree with 100 percent. Sure she’s naive in believing that free education and healthcare pay for themselves, and that the money will simply come off the money trees the evil 1 percent are hoarding (something that Gary Johnson corrected her on, claiming that free comes with a cost and that federally-subsidized student loans are the problem not the solution), and I rolled my eyes when she parroted the bumper sticker talking point “Money is not speech; Corporations are not people," but I applaud her opposition to indefinite detention, warrantless wiretapping, and drug prohibition. As a doctor, she managed to diagnose the real problem with marijuana: “It is dangerous because it is illegal; it is not illegal because it is dangerous.” If I had to choose another candidate other than Johnson, Dr. Jill would be my next choice. She’s passionate, intelligent, and as a female politician, a breath of fresh air from the other political bimbos: Palin, Bachmann, Clinton, Shultz, etc.
Virgil Goode (Constitution Party): The only thing I knew about the Constitution Party before this debate was how it is to the right of the Republican Party. So my expectations were not high, and Virgil’s southern drawl did nothing to raise them. I admit that I admired his willingness to veto the NDAA, and I loved how he demanded “a balanced budget now, not ten years down the road.” However, unlike the other three candidates, he was the only one not to support drug legalization. He claimed ending the drug war would not fix our budget—which is true, but the revenue from the legal drugs through taxes would help! Overall, not that impressive.
Rocky Anderson (Justice Party): I knew nothing about this man or his party before this debate, and I’m still scratching my head trying to figure out the difference between him and Jill, between his party and the Green Party. Seriously, I have no clue. They’re mirror images of each other. One just happens to be lead by a woman. But unlike Jill, I found nothing impressive about him. He claimed that budget cuts were not the answer to our economic problems (even though said “austerity” worked in countries like Estonia, Canada, New Zealand, etc.) and he wanted to create a Constitutional amendment guaranteeing equal rights to all. (That amendment already exists: it’s called the Fourteenth!) So really, I was unimpressed.
Those are my thoughts on the candidates and debate. But I want to know what you all think: Which of the candidates do you support and why? And what were your thoughts on the debate?
Please leave your thoughts in the comments section below.