Cast Your Vote: Who Is Your Choice for President?
Editor’s note: At the end of each week, Truthdig will present our readers with a poll. The question will be related to the week’s election news and will change every week, so be sure to check in and cast your vote!
Donald Trump’s campaign went through some big changes during the week, and Hillary Clinton faced criticism for some of her own staffing choices. Third-party candidates Jill Stein and Gary Johnson ramped up their media presence. And some of the biggest challenges to politicians stemmed from environmental disasters, as flooding in Louisiana and wildfires in Southern California led to renewed attention on the impact of climate change.
First, a look at Trump’s campaign drama. Washington Post columnist E.J. Dionne Jr. explains the consequences of Trump’s staffing changes:
The new leadership—with [Stephen] Bannon and pollster Kellyanne Conway displacing Paul Manafort of the Ukrainian Connection at the top of the heap—is likely to steer Trump even more in the direction of the European far right. …
Bannon’s rise dramatizes the catastrophe GOP establishmentarians brought upon themselves by imagining that they could use the far right for their own purposes while somehow keeping it tame. Bannon’s European interests suggest he is far more impressed by right-wing third parties than by traditional Republicanism. He believed the anti-establishment rhetoric that Republican politicians deployed but never really meant when they were attacking President Obama. Now, the GOP faces the possibility of a real split.
Earlier this week, author Paul Street wrote on the perceived threat of Trump. “Progressives should view the alleged threat of a great wave of racist, nativist, white, working-class anger ready to ‘Brexit’ the toxic Trump into the White House with a healthy dose of skepticism,” Street wrote. “Trump’s white proletarian base is not big or energized enough to make that happen. The notion that it is seems calculated to scare left-leaning progressives into voting for the Wall Street-favored, right-wing Democrat, war hawk Clinton and to reinforce the very neoliberal and identity-obsessed politics that helps explain the existence of such white working-class Republicanism in the first place.”
Speaking of Clinton, she faced criticism when it was revealed this week that she had tapped Ken Salazar, a former senator who has favored the Trans-Pacific Partnership and fracking, to join her transition team should she become president. Common Dreams reporter Nadia Prupis explains that this transition team “was announced just days after 15 progressive groups published an open letter calling on Clinton to appoint personnel that would prove her commitment to issues such as ending economic inequality and stopping the TPP.” A “Democracy Now!” interview with David Sirota, senior editor for investigations at International Business Times, went into detail about the ramifications of Salazar’s appointment.
Third-party candidates were also extremely active this week. Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein and her running mate, Ajamu Baraka, became the first Green Party candidates ever to appear in a town hall meeting on prime-time television. On the CNN telecast they outlined their “Green New Deal,” and Stein “told the public she would ‘have trouble sleeping at night if either Trump or Clinton is elected.’ ” Later in the week, the Green Party candidates discussed the economy, foreign policy and their lack of mainstream media coverage in a radio interview with Fox News’ Alan Colmes. “These are the most unpopular and disliked candidates in our history,” Stein said of Clinton and Trump. “People are saying, ‘We’ve had enough of those guys.’ ”
Libertarian Gary Johnson and his running mate, William Weld, held a forum, hosted by Fusion, midway through the week. “You’re gonna get a partnership here. … We’re gonna be fiscally conservative and socially inclusive,” Johnson said of himself and Weld. He added: “Honest Johnson and Brainy Bill.”
And finally, one of the most prevalent themes throughout the week was the drastic impact of climate change on the environment in America. Between devastating flooding in Louisiana, wildfires in Southern California and Native American protests against the threat of contamination of the Missouri River, political candidates across the spectrum were forced to address environmental concerns.
Truthdig wants to hear from you: Whom do you plan to vote for for president? Let us know in the poll below. One vote per person, please. (Make your selection and then click on “Vote.” To see results of the polling, click on “Results.”)
If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface. We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.
Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.Support Truthdig