Nature photography, political rants, and Martyman laughs from the ten-time award-winning author of "Cool Creatures, Hot Planet," "Endangered Edens," and the "Time Is Irreverent" series.

The greenest thing Jill Stein can do is drop out and support Hillary Clinton

Marty Essen

If Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein cared more about the environment than she did for her party, she would immediately drop out of the presidential race and throw her support behind Hillary Clinton.

I wouldn’t have written this a week ago, when Clinton was cruising to a lopsided victory. And while that landslide may still materialize, what if a majority of undecided voters see Clinton’s ongoing email problem as the equivalent to Trump’s bigotry, hate, misogyny, and total lack of qualifications to be the leader of the Free World? As absurd as it seems, low information voters on the fence could break for Trump, based on the incomplete and misleading announcement FBI director James Comey made this past Friday.

Even though Jill Stein has no chance to win the election, in a close Clinton-Trump contest, she could hand us President Trump, just as Ralph Nader handed us President George W. Bush. The only difference being that Trump would be much worse than Bush—especially when it comes to the environment.

When Trump promises to get rid of 70% of regulations, he is talking largely about regulations that protect the environment. Furthermore, he’s also been quite vocal about cancelling the Paris agreement. Clinton, on the other hand, has already demonstrated that she would be a pro-environment president.

For those who deny the “Ralph Nader Effect,” let’s look at Florida’s certified votes in the 2000 election:

  • Bush votes: 2,912,790
  • Gore votes: 2,912,253
  • Nader votes: 97,488

Considering that Bush was essentially the anti-Nader, it’s realistic to expect that no more than 25% of the Nader votes would have gone to Bush. So if you re-do the election numbers without Nader, it looks like this:

  • Bush votes: 2,912,790 + 24,372 = 2,937,162
  • Gore votes: 2,912,253 + 73,116 = 2,985,369

Even if you assume that numerous Nader voters would have skipped the election all together, the above example still allows for 48,206 (almost 50%) of the Nader backers refusing to vote—and Gore still wins.

You can even change the numbers, and assume that 45% of Nader backers did heroin on Election Day and voted for Bush. At 45% Gore still wins:

  • Bush votes: 2,912,790 + 43,870 = 2,956,660
  • Gore votes: 2,912,253 + 53,618 = 2,965,871

So, yes—if Ralph Nader wasn’t on the ballot, our George W. Bush national nightmare would have never happened. Al Gore would have almost certainly won Florida and consequently the Presidential Election.

Jill Stein is now in the position to do more for the environment than she has done cumulatively for the environment during her entire lifetime. Although it’s too late for her to take her name off the ballot, she can still drop from the race and encourage her supporters to vote for Hillary Clinton.

Please, Jill, don’t take the chance that a vote wasted on you could put Trump over the top. Make the announcement today. Do it for your country. Do it for our planet!

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