Maybe you should 'throw your vote away' on a third party or write-in

Home / Maybe you should 'throw your vote away' on a third party or write-in

Just this month, we have seen the president of the Philippines reviewing troops with China’s President Xi Jinping, declaring a separation with the United States and the birth of a new global hegemon, a sterling triumvirate of “China, the Phillipines and Russia.”

The State Department was left in some confusion.

This issue and so many more internally have been amplified by a strange election year and one alien to our traditions in so many ways; the sending forth of family members to “rule” now instead of govern, the rise of nontraditional actors like real-estate mogul Donald Trump when the most obvious choice of responsible, able and successful governors of great and important states like New York, Louisiana and Texas are dismissed out of hand.


At the moment, it might be said that the Republican party no longer really exists as its chosen candidate might most closely be described as an anarcho-capitalist. And the Democrats are no better. Great former governors like Brian Schweitzer of Montana, who would have added real flair to a sclerotic Eastern-bound establishment or Sen. Mark WarnerMark Robert WarnerVirginia senator calls for Barr to resign over order to clear protests Trump asserts his power over Republicans Expanding tax credit for businesses retaining workers gains bipartisan support MORE of Virginia were not even seriously considered.

Possibly because there is today no longer any real Democratic Party. It has been replaced by the Clinton party.

All in all, it has brought us to a state of crisis, or what might be seen in hindsight as prelude to a crisis. With hopes, the turmoil will end on Nov. 8 when the election is settled one way or another. My guess is that it will not be and the real crisis only begins then.

So in this election, which is like no other since 1860, deciding who to vote for is of ultimate importance. We are told that this is no time for “throwing away your vote” on a third party. Never mind that the leading third party, the Libertarian ticket, is comprised of two Jeffersonian liberals, former Republican Govs. Gary JohnsonGary Earl JohnsonWhere Biden, Trump stand in key swing states Amash decides against Libertarian campaign for president The Hill’s Campaign Report: Amash moves toward Libertarian presidential bid MORE of New Mexico for president and William Weld of Massachusetts for vice president, two of the most successful and honorable governors of the post-war period.

While the mainstream parties offer two of the most disliked candidates in American history, each promising a crisis of one kind of another. And we are asked to vote for which disaster we prefer.

What would you prefer, a bruise or a deep cut?

Voting this year for one of the traditional parties might be considered throwing away your vote.

There is the opportunity to write in a candidate for president and certainly now is the time to welcome new ideas from anyone who has them. Please let us hear them.

I’ve decided that if I am to write in this time, I know whom to vote for: Jim Webb.

Webb, former Democratic senator from Virginia, former secretary of the Navy under President Ronald Reagan, Appalachian polymath, novelist, historian and war hero of the first rank, would well have added character and imagination to the ongoing discussion in the Democratic primary. But he left very early on — as did the best in the Republican lineup.

I’ve been celebrating Webb long before he decided to run for president, calling him a national treasure “as comfortable in the redneck hollers as he is among South Asia’s Buddhist sangas. We have not seen his likes since Davy Crockett graced the halls of Congress.”

But we need him now because crisis will bring us to his doorstep and that crisis will start in the Philippines. Our future president — whoever that might be — will be unprepared and China fully understands that.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpSenate advances public lands bill in late-night vote Warren, Democrats urge Trump to back down from veto threat over changing Confederate-named bases Esper orders ‘After Action Review’ of National Guard’s role in protests MORE might want to build a wall somewhere in the Pacific. Clinton, the most-traveled secretary of State in history, visited 112 countries during her four-year tenure, but like Rudyard Kipling’s fictional cat that walked by himself, “all places are alike” to her. That is the curse of all the utopian globalists of the Clinton era.

Alone of both parties, Webb understands that all places are not the same, all crises are different and the singular crisis America faces ahead is with China.

“From this point forward, no one should doubt that our overinvestment in the economy of a nondemocratic and ever more aggressive nation has seriously compromised our ability to conduct foreign policy in the world’s most dynamic region. And the fact that we have become vulnerable to a Chinese military modernized through the benefits of our own technology should give all of us pause,” he wrote in The Wall Street Journal back in 2001.

He has been telling us this for more than two decades: “Warily Watching China” in 1999, “What to Do about China” in 1998. But our Eurocentric political parties are more concerned with Europe and the Middle East and have sent us into long denial.

But now we are on the threshold.

Quigley is a prize-winning writer who has worked more than 35 years as a book and magazine editor, political commentator and reviewer. He lives in New Hampshire with his wife and four children. Contact him at

The views expressed by contributors are their own and not the views of The Hill.

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