The Green Party’s Jill Stein could pose a serious threat to Hillary Clinton this election. No, Ms. Stein won’t be elected President. Indeed, she won’t even get many votes. (Sorry Janice, the Green Party will always be a splinter group; its focus is too narrow.) But she could get enough support to sabotage Hillary’s chances against Donald Trump.
Ms. Stein is appealing to Bernie Sanders’ supporters, suggesting that those who don’t like Hillary should vote for her instead.
And the way Bernie’s campaign is going, I wouldn’t be surprised if some of his supporters turn against the Democrats. He is unforgivably smearing the party, calling it “corrupt,” for example. And that kind of reckless rhetoric is likely to resonate with some of his radical followers.
With the polls showing Hillary neck and neck with Trump, the defection of thousands – possibly millions – of Sanders’ supporters could mean defeat for the Democratic candidate.
Of course there are many Republicans who might find it abhorrent to vote for Trump. And you might expect them to defect to the Libertarian Party. Some Republican leaders already are heading in that direction.
That could offset Hillary’s loss of the disaffected Sanders’ supporters.
But it’s not going to happen. The Republican rank and file are massing behind Trump. Blindly loyal to their party, they will hold their noses and mark their ballots for Trump, even when they recognize what a detestable human being he is.
It’s time for Democrats to show some loyalty, too.
If Sanders’ supporters petulantly thumb their noses at Hillary because she defeated their pet candidate, they could put Trump in the White House.
And that is a possibility even the most rabid of Bernie’s followers should find too terrifying to contemplate.