With the Libertarian Party and Green Party expected to harvest a combined 10 percent of the vote in this crucial election, John Oliver provided a warts-and-all analysis of Gary Johnson and Jill Stein on Last Week Tonight.
“This election has now achieved a dubious distinction: Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are among the most disliked presidential candidates in history, so it is hardly surprising that some are seeking an alternative,” Oliver said. “This disenchantment might explain the high interest in America’s third parties, because when your main two options are depressing, any third choice seems good.”
History shows that third party candidates could swing elections in the opposite ideological elections – Teddy Roosevelt in 1912 and Ralph Nader in 2000 are two instances – so third parties are often hit with “spoiler” labels, a word that upsets Libertarian candidate Johnson. However, the point of the election is to vote for the person who most aligns with a person’s values.
The host then grazed over Johnson and Stein’s platforms. The Green Party candidate’s central goal is to eliminate a generation’s worth of student debt, a nice idea in theory but, as Oliver pointed out, Stein is clueless when it comes to executing on this campaign promise.
“In terms of how fundamentally flawed that is on every level, it’s basically akin to saying ‘I’ll make us energy independent by ordering the Post Office to invade Canada,'” Oliver said. “No, Jill. That’s impractical, it’s a terrible idea, and you don’t seem to understand anything about it.” Throughout her campaign, Stein has wavered on issues like Brexit and mandatory vaccinations, and exposed herself as a 9/11 truther. (Unmentioned by Oliver: Stein’s unproven theory that WiFi is harmful to children.)
“Like Jill Stein, Johnson is prone to overly simple solutions that could have disastrous consequences,” Oliver said about the Libertarian candidate’s blasé promise to eliminate the Department of Education, Department of Commerce and Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Oliver also mocked Johnson’s climate change stance that the sun will one day “grow and encompass the Earth.” “That’s your plan? Don’t worry, we’ll all be dead eventually anyway,” Oliver said. “Look, I would love for there to be a perfect third party candidate, I even understand the argument that a third party candidate can put a new issue or a new solution on the table, but it is hard to make a case that is what’s happening here. There is no perfect candidate in this race. When people say, you don’t have to choose the lesser of two evils, they are right, because you have to choose the lesser of four.”
Voters of all political persuasions will find something objectionable in Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson’s positions. Watch here.