Why I am #neverMcMullin

A lot of friends I respect are getting behind Evan McMullin as a possible presidential candidate.

I am #neverMcMullin.

This post will explain why.  But first an important disclaimer.  By all accounts McMullin, who is LDS, is a moral person.  Unlike at least two other presidential candidates, he has not disqualified himself by being a corrupt, lying jerk.  So, I can understand the desire, especially by Mormons, to try to find a candidate to support.  And you could certainly do worse than McMullin.

But I cannot support him, and I think Mormons are being somewhat naive in supporting him.

Evan McMullin has no executive experience of any kind.  Evan McMullin, 40, graduated from BYU in 2001.  He worked for the CIA in counterterrorism for 10 years until 2011.  Then he worked for Goldman Sachs for two years.  In 2013, McMullin became a senior adviser on national security issues for the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. McMullin became the chief policy director of the House Republican Conference in 2015. McMullin resigned from his position as chief policy director shortly before declaring his run for president.  McMullin’s big cause in the last few years has been to oppose Assad in Syria and encourage U.S. involvement in the Syrian conflict.  More on this later.

But the bottom line is that McMullin has never been elected to anything, nor has he run a large company or even a large government bureaucracy.  He has zero executive experience.

Evan McMullin’s presidential run is the creation of the same people who crafted and supported George W Bush’s failed foreign policy.   You can read more about this here.   The bottom line is that some of the nation’s most ardent neocons, led by William Kristol, were desperate to find somebody to run against Trump.  Why?  Because Trump said he was against the war in Iraq and talked about peacefully cooperating with Russia.  This they could not countenance because in the world of Bill Kristol the United States must constantly look for new enemies abroad.  Most Americans think the Iraq invasion was a massive mistake and want the U.S. to keep out of Syria and to be friendly with Russia.  But Kristol wants constant war in the Middle East and constant tension with Russia.  Who cares that’s Kristol’s foreign policy has been a massive failure:  we must continue the same crazy policies until the end, according to the neocons.

Let me make it clear right here that one of the reasons I am not voting for Trump is that I don’t believe he would actually follow through on a significantly better foreign policy.  I think he is unstable enough to get us into a war with some foreign leader who isn’t polite enough to him.  So, I side with Kristol in opposing Trump, but I don’t think the solution is going back to Bush’s foreign policy, which by the way is the primary reason we got Obama in the first place.

Mormons are being taken for granted — again.   I believe that Kristol primarily supported McMullin with the idea of preventing Trump from winning Utah.  Kristol noticed that Mormons are not crazy about Trump, who lost big time in Utah during the primaries.  Kristol does not care if Hillary is elected, because he can count on Hillary being in favor of every crazy new war that comes along, as well as reigniting a few of the old ones.  Kristol sees Trump as the primary threat.  And Mormons are falling for Kristol’s trap by supporting his Manchurian candidate.  The latest poll shows that Trump and Hillary and McMullin are very close in Utah.  Kristol believes that Mormons, like sheep, will vote for the LDS candidate.  I find this insulting.

Face it:  most people who favor McMullin know very little about him except that he is Mormon and he appears to have traditional Republican positions.  He has not been vetted.  Who knows what skeletons he has in his closet?  Shouldn’t we know more about a candidate before entrusting our nuclear arsenal to him?

Go to Evan McMullin’s web site.  He wants war, war and more war.  Here is the link to his web site.  Yes, McMullin is good on some issues.  He is pretty much a standard moderate to conservative Republican in many ways.  But look at his first priority:  “National Security.”  And then scroll down.  His fourth priority is “America’s Role in the World.”  He slams Trump for agreeing with sequestration, which was an extremely moderate attempt to control government spending, including the military.  The U.S. spends more on the military than the seven largest militaries in the world, yet McMullin wants to spend more.


McMullin wants the U.S. to be the world’s policeman.  The Founding Fathers repeatedly warned against involvement in foreign wars.  Yet every year we find new enemies abroad.  And meanwhile we have a large and ever out of control national debt, fueled in part by our excessive military spending.

Here is what McMullin wants to do (from his web site):  “Evan will impose tougher sanctions on Russia and increase America’s military presence in the Baltics in order to deter and reverse Putin’s aggression, rather than pretending that he is a partner for peace in Syria. Evan will stand up for the rights of American and allied ships to sail freely in international waters, rather than letting China dominate the Western Pacific.”

Yes, you read that correctly:  McMullin wants to put troops on Russia’s borders and pick a fight with China.  How would we respond if Russia or China put troops in Mexico or Canada?  We know the answer to that because Soviet missiles in Cuba almost led to nuclear war in 1962.  It seems to me that McMullin is the aggressive one here, not the Russians or the Chinese.

I would propose another course:  let the parties in Syria fight it out without our involvement (except as a humanitarian force).  Syria is not central to U.S. national interests.  We don’t share borders with Syria.  We should also recognize that Russia and China are trading partners.  We can be neutral toward these countries and see where we can cooperate, rather than immediately and obsessively seeking to make these countries enemies.

My vision of the United States is one where we trade and are at peace with the world.  It is one where we vigorously respond to attacks and defend our borders but remain neutral in conflicts that are none of our business.  We should spend much more on intelligence — trying to spot potential enemies before they get to our country — and much less on troops and armament.  We should shutter most of our foreign military bases and concentrate on threats to those countries that are essential to the U.S. national interest.

McMullin’s support of Syrian rebels is a massive failure.  McMullin’s primary cause in the last few years has been arming Syrian rebels to overthrow Assad.  Now, let’s make this clear:  Assad is a bad guy, at least as bad as Saddam Hussein.  But from the perspective of the U.S., Assad keeping a lid on all of the crazy factions in Syria is in our national interest.  Let’s look at the record:  we got rid of Saddam Hussein, and the result was ISIS. We got rid of Qadafi in Libya, and the result was complete chaos in Libya and the Benghazi attack.  Again, I am not saying we should support Assad, but our record in the Middle East has been about bad as you can get.  How can McMullin or anybody else assure that the arms he wants to send to anti-Assad forces don’t end up in the hands of ISIS?  He cannot, because one of the primary sources of ISIS weapons is the United States.  So, to sum up:  McMullin wants more weapons for ISIS.  Great.

McMullin’s foreign policy is immoral and will result in more war. Morality is not just about good personal conduct and not being corrupt, power-hungry and crazy like Hillary and Trump.  Morality also involves the policies you will promote.  If there is one clear lesson from the Book of Mormon, it is that wars and contention cause the Spirit of God to flee, and the end result is apocalyptic war.  The Book of Mormon is not a pacifist book in the strictest sense.  Wars of self-defense are justified.  If the United States is attacked, I believe we are morally obligated to defend ourselves and our country.  But there is simply no example in the Book of Mormon of righteous soldiers venturing into enemy territory for years and years, as the U.S. has done in Afghanistan.  The pattern of the Book of Mormon for righteous war is:  sue for peace.  When the attack is imminent, ask God to protect you through sincere prayer and fasting.  Constantly offer a peaceful solution.  When attacked, fight to protect your homes and your family and your liberty.  When you win, be compassionate to your enemies.  I see none of this in Evan McMullin’s foreign policy.  In fact, his policy is the opposite of what the Book of Mormon teaches.

I have three young sons and two daughters, and I don’t want them dying in an unnecessary foreign war.   I honestly believe that a foreign policy of defending our country, suing for peace with our potential enemies and asking God’s help will make our country safer.  It will be less likely that my children will have to die in some foreign war.  If the United States is directly attacked, I will go to the fight with my own weapons if need be, and some of my children might go with me.  But battles in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, Yemen — NO!  I cannot support it, and I cannot support for president somebody likely to make that happen.

If you are interested, I will be voting for Darrell Castle of the Constitution party for president.  I think there are also advantages in voting for Gary Johnson of the Libertarian party.  I can get behind voting for either of those two guys, but #neverMcMullin, #neverTrump and #neverHillary.



This entry was posted in General by Geoff B.. Bookmark the permalink.

About Geoff B.

Geoff B graduated from Stanford University (class of 1985) and worked in journalism for several years until about 1992, when he took up his second career in telecommunications sales. He has held many callings in the Church, but his favorite calling is father and husband. Geoff is active in martial arts and loves hiking and skiing. Geoff has five children and lives in Colorado.

130 thoughts on “Why I am #neverMcMullin

  1. “He has zero executive experience.”

    I agree that this disqualifies. However, plenty of Mormons voted for Barack Obama, and he also had zero executive experience. Not sure how much of a deal breaker this really is to folks.

    I agree with you, though, that people are flocking to McMullin without thinking things through. I’m voting Castle.

  2. Zero executive experience should have been a deal breaker for electing Obama, but people were tired of the wars in the Middle East, and Obama promised a more sane foreign policy. And then Obama did not close Guantanamo, and droned endlessly (killing U.S. citizens in the process) and supported overthrowing Qaddafi. This is what no executive experience and no real morality will get you.

  3. I live in Utah. Per social media, all my friends who were voting for Gary Johnson are now moving toward McMillin after the latest poll showing him within a few points of the lead. Qualified or not, I think he has a 50/50 chance to carry the state. Frankly, Not having Trump or Hillary get our Electoral votes would please me to no end.

  4. I am not a big fan of McMullin. But he is by far better than Trump or Clinton. Yes, he is another Mitt Romney, but he isn’t so horrible (i.e., Johnson) that I can’t vote for him. I would rather vote for Darrel Castle, but if McMullin has a chance to win Utah, then I am better off voting for him than for Castle.

  5. I am never McMullin also. But some of your criticisms of McMullin apply to Castle as well.
    I am never Trump also. The GOP has been on a self destruct path for a while now. After this next election, they should pay more attention to those that do the autopsy on the campaign.

  6. I would consider voting for McMillin, even though his political positions do not really align with mine, if I lived in Utah. However, I live in a swing state, so I feel that it is my responsibility to choose one of the two candidates who will win (and, as I’m female, you can probably guess who it WON’T be). Geoff, your criticisms are well stated, but carefully analyzing his positions is pretty pointless as there is no chance he will win–he is purely a protest vote. I do hope he wins in Utah though. I hope anyone besides Trump wins Utah.

  7. Hmmm. I just did a quick search on Castle, and I guess I don’t really see how he is much more experienced than McMullin. But, I am happy to have more people vote third party-almost no matter who it is. Our two major parties are headed in the wrong direction and hopefully substantial third party votes will make that statement.
    Actually, I am personally more than exhausted if presidential politics. Even more importantly, many local issues get put on the ballot during a presidential election . Get educated on the state and local issues and politicians and make those educated votes. And those votes will carry more weight anyway.

  8. I am almost certainly going to vote for Castle, because he is the best choice on my ballot. If I lived in Utah I would definitely vote for McMullin. If I lived in New Mexico, I would probably vote Johnson, because he has a chance to win there and is better than Trump or Hillary.
    I disagree with the analysis that McMullin is a Kristol plant on unsuspecting Utahns. A regional 3rd party has a chance to win electoral votes, but does not raise the chance of a Trump defeat. If enough people follow my logic in the first paragraph, then there will be 6 electors taken from Trump’s total and 5 taken from Hillary’s. This makes a non-majority electoral college more likely. It would then throw the election to the US House with the top 3 candidates considered. A slam dunk for Trump in that case. Trump is actually more likely to win if this happens. Hillary could get 265-269 electoral votes, lose NM to Johnson, and then lose to Trump in the House.
    If Trump is asked about a 3rd party beating him in UT in the next debate, he should double down and endorse McMullin in UT, and Johnson in NM and anywhere else he might take votes from Hillary. Talk about a breath of fresh air to many voters! No neo-con conspiracy here.

  9. ” However, I live in a swing state, so I feel that it is my responsibility to choose one of the two candidates who will win (and, as I’m female, you can probably guess who it WON’T be).”

    Clearly you’re not voting for Hillary.

  10. Out of curiosity Geoff who are you voting for?

    I’ll admit that if it’s close or Trump is winning I’ll vote Clinton even though I dislike her and think her a horrible candidate. Yet I fear for conservatism if Trump isn’t thoroughly defeated. If Clinton is ahead (unlikely yet she’s tied with Trump today and only barely ahead of McMullin) then I’ll vote McMullin. I think having someone other than Clinton or Trump will send a clear signal how disgusted people are with both parties this year.

  11. “Hmmm. I just did a quick search on Castle, and I guess I don’t really see how he is much more experienced than McMullin.”

    Castle has been involved with the Constitution party for decades and has long been involved in national politics. He also founded a multi-state law firm in 1984 and is the head of a successful charity.

    Castle is not a governor or a senator or even a member of the House of Reps, but he does have significantly more experience running things than McMullin.

  12. Regarding American weapons in ISIS’ hands: the US initially did give the anti-Assad faction some weapons, but as our foreign policy on Syria was so wishy-washy and non-committal, the lack of American presence caused the moderate rebels to be pushed out to be replaced by a much more radical faction.

    I think what is at issue is not how much should be spent on defense, but what we do with the resources. We’ve been at war since 2001 but congress has yet to actually declare war. Our military presences in the Middle East and Afghanistan have been tepid at best. While I am not wild about having MORE of a presence in the Middle East, I don’t think Johnson’s isolationist alternative is much of a solution.

    I take issue with the accusation that Utah Mormons are being manipulated like sheep. I will probably vote for McMullin, and I do admit that the fact that he’s from my “Tribe” is a point in his favor, but given the number of Mormons of my acquaintance who are total jerks (apparently you can still hold a valid temple recommend and be the biggest a-hole on the planet), that alone isn’t enough to induce me to vote for him. I like McMullin for his stances on issues that are important to me.

  13. In George Washington’s address about not becoming involved in the “entangling alliances” of Europe, his point was very different from the one Geoff tries to make for it. It was precisely because the U.S. was so isolated by huge oceans from Europe, and that their wars for domination over each other had nothing to do with American interests, that he warned against becoming involved with those particular squabbles.

    Those conditions don’t remotely resemble the present day. We are no longer “fortress America” separated by almost impassable oceans that allow us to ignore the rest of the world (or protect us from it). Our national interest is intimately tied up in the freedom of our allies, in global trade, the need for open sea lanes worldwide, etc.

    It’s a complete canard to suggest Washington’s counsel that spoke to specific conditions that no longer exist means the Founders were against all alliances (clearly, they weren’t when it was in our own nation’s interest, the alliance with France at the time we fought the Revolutionary War being a prime example, never mind the Founders’ interest in spreading freedom to Canada).

    The only thing I reject is the rigidness of doctrinaire ideologies like libertarianism. I’m personally rather skeptical of new faces on the electoral scene (and viewed McMillan with jaded eyes for a long time), but actually read his detailed positions on his website for the first time last night and realized my skepticism of him was based on my dislike for what felt gimmicky at first.

    McMillan understands policy and conservatism much better than Romney ever did (I wasn’t a fan, but voted for him in the general). I’m interested in denying electoral votes to Clinton at this point, and McMillan is where I’m headed at the moment, though I haven’t made a final decision.

    I couldn’t vote for Johnson & Weld. Never mind that they aren’t libertarians, just two former Republicans (on the left of what used to be the Republican party at that–Weld was a solid Eastern Establishment Republican à la Nelson Rockefeller) who found another party that would advance their political ambitions.

    And perhaps the reason Johnson has zero knowledge of the world is because he’s been toking on too many joints in his former position as CEO of a cannabis promotion firm. Good thing he’s promised not to consume pot while running for president (doesn’t seem to have helped his memory or knowledge of the world), but I wouldn’t have him as an example for my kids and the youth of this nation as a whole with his ill-informed promotion of recreational marijuana any more than I’d choose Clinton or Trump.

    There will come a time when America will be forced to protect freedom only in America, but it is the military might of a freedom loving America that lead to 70 years of what has been called the “Pax Americana.” It is our withdrawal from the world under the Obama administration that has led to the expansionist and aggressive actions of Russia and China.

    Moral decay leads to looking inward and withdrawal from the interest in the freedom of other peoples. While we should clearly not enter conflicts we don’t have the will to win or that are not truly in our national interest, I have no problem helping nations remain under the umbrella of American freedom through military strength (as a deterrence to war–NATO & Korea being prime examples).

    It is the unwillingness of good people to defend the freedom of others that puts peace at risk. Weakness invites aggression, even if it is simply perceived as unwillingness to act in defense of others.

  14. John M, McMullin, not McMillan.

    It was actually Jefferson who warned about “entangling alliances.” Washington said: “”It is our true policy to steer clear of permanent alliance with any portion of the foreign world.”

    There is no canard here: the U.S. avoided all permanent alliances until after WWII, although we obviously had temporary alliances with Britain and France during WWI. It was a clear part of U.S. policy to avoid getting involved in other countries’ business. The Founders saw a Europe with constantly shifting alliances that led to war. Their priority was building a country that would remain separate from these alliances. Despite friendship with the UK and France, Eisenhower avoided involvement in the Sinai in the 1950s — precisely because it was none of our business. The U.S. has a long, long history of neutrality that is honorable. Involvement in other countries’ affairs leads to disasters like Iraq and Libya.

    So, yeah, we disagree.

  15. I think you’re giving Kristol waaay too much credit here. Like Breitbart could take your two paragraphs on Kristol, throw in “Jew” a few times, and then publish how he’s this dark string-puller. But you make some good points on mcMullin’s foreign policy stance.

    Castle has 0% chance to get to double-digits in Utah, but McMullin and Johnson are already there. Whoever’s doing better on election day will get my vote. And yeah, if by some miracle Castle is polling better than them, sure, I’ll vote for him.

  16. Geoff: I would suggest that anybody with knowledge of modern China will tell you that their current policies (for at least the past eleven years) has been to buy their way into countries, and they have done this throughout the mideast and Africa. I suggest that the WAPO article be read a little more thoroughly, and that you give Mr. McMullen a little credit for having become a rather well versed person on Middle Eastern affairs. We agree that his lack of administrative or elected office experience is a handicap, but when compared to what we might expect from the two leading candidates, I would be willing to give him the benefit of believing him to be a quick study.

  17. I totally respect your position. I am voting for McMullin for a number of reasons, but one of them is that I am a neocon myself.

  18. Jim Wright, for various reasons I have a lot of knowledge of Chinese activities abroad. China “buys their way into countries” by offering to invest in local businesses. Every time a Chinese minister visits Latin America, for example, the local business press is excited because investment means jobs and opportunity. China’s growing economy has a huge need for commodities, and China is investing in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, Australia and even the U.S. and Canada to satisfy internal demand. So, their actions involve businesspeople voluntarily offering to invest to create jobs and opportunity. I see nothing wrong with this, and in fact this is what U.S. companies do. If anything, we should see China as a sometime business rival and sometime partner. There is no reason to pursue war with China.

  19. I’m LDS and I’ve been trying to get some word out of his campaign about his membership in the Council on Foreign Relations only to get nothing but silence for my question but spammed with request for money…

  20. Just a quick note. My family and I are in the military stationed overseas. I think it’s important to note that we already have US Soldiers placed in the Baltic countries. There are Soldiers in Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Hungary as a “show of force” against “Russian aggression.” My husband has been among the soldiers sent to these places. This is not a new idea from McMullin. It’s happening now under the Obama administration. – Otherwise, thanks for the post. Lots to think about.

  21. None of the things you worry about McMullin doing will happen if you vote for him. None will happen with the Constitution party vote either.

    I’d just say people in Utah really should vote for McMullin and let the chips fall where they may in the nation.

    Outside of Utah it might be the next best candidate with a chance of taking votes from either candidate needed to throw the election to the house. Sadly that might mean a vote for Trump in some cases.

  22. Geoff, you nailed it on McMullin. Note also that the poll in question heavily oversampled neocons in the immediate aftermath of TrumpTape, so it’s wildly inaccurate.

    McMullin is simply the stand-in for the slot that was to be filled by ¡Jeb!, Rubio, or maybe Cruz.

    Make no mistake, all of the candidates are awful people. Most of them are part of the globalist establishment and we know exactly what we will get with them: further eroded liberties, open borders, and war with Russia. But only one has a non-zero chance of preventing these things, and that’s Trump. He’s awful, but he’s no globalist, he’s got no ego to protect, and he’s looking to leave a historic legacy. That means that there’s a risk he’ll actually do well by the US, unlike every single other option.

    I cannot vote for any of these other clowns. But there’s a possibility I can hold my nose and vote for Trump. We shall see.

  23. Geoff
    You’ll have to excuse the autocorrect — McMullin.

    Both Washington and Jefferson were stating the same policy, despite the semantical quibbling. As Washington stated, why should we “entangle our peace and prosperity in the toils of European ambition…?” But it’s still important not to ignore the context of their statements. According to Washington, it was “[o]ur detached and distant situation [that] invites and enables us to pursue a different course.” Yet he foresaw a time when our own nation’s military would be adequate for its own defense and “when we may choose peace or war, as our interest, guided by justice, shall counsel”–his policy of strict neutrality was one of necessity and prudence due to our military inadequacies. It was our unique position of isolation from the intrigues and actions of other major powers and nations by huge oceans (and in whose territorial conquests and squabbles we had zero interest) that made that the only realistic and “honorable” policy for a nation without adequate means to defend itself on the world seas. That world no longer exists, no matter how much we wished it did.

    Had we allied with France, as the Jeffersonians wanted to do, we would likely have incurred real destruction at the hands of a global English imperial navy. It was the only possible position at the time for a nation without a navy capable of defending itself. They were not the foreign policy isolationists you portray them to be. There was no honor or wisdom in helping other nations in their territorial ambitions, but the Founders were not against the idea of using military force on behalf of freedom when they thought it was possible (the War of 1812 is another example of the Founders’ mindset being less isolationist than you propose).

    That doesn’t mean all decisions were appropriate, but the principle itself was not as you presented it at our founding (except by necessity and the existence of a completely different world where freedom and its defense was not at issue in the European theater).

    The lessons we learned by our withdrawal from the world militarily after WWI is precisely what changed our outdated notion of military isolationism as a “safe” way to function in the world. We left a military presence in many nations to ensure their development into free democracies that would no longer threaten American national security. Eisenhower was fully part of that process.

    To suggest Eisenhower was a military isolationist or against “permanent” alliances (no alliance is permanent if national security needs change, regardless, so I wouldn’t want to suggest any alliance is permanent) would also be claiming something for him that he clearly was not. He was clearly a strong supporter of NATO and organized a single command structure for Europe under it as it’s Supreme Allied Commander. He also fully supported the U.S. military presence in Korea by which the peace has been maintained there for more than half a century. (Is there any doubt that South Korea would become an immediate target by the hundreds of thousands of artillery pieces and nuclear blackmail were the U.S. to withdraw?)

    Leaving other nations to the whims of tyrants and dictators might work for some as an honorable U.S. policy position, but it doesn’t work for me in any moral sense (that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be wise in our use of the military or how we spend our budget–it’s highly inefficient presently).

    And the security of Europe, Asia, and other regions of the world will clearly impact our own national security. That doesn’t mean we’ll always have a choice (meaning, we can’t solve everyone’s problems), but it doesn’t mean we should withdraw our military from the world where it has been essential to maintaining peace for 70 years. It seems clear to me that Europe would no doubt be under complete Russian domination at this point were that the policy.

    At some point, I suspect the moral decline and turning inward of our nation will leave it unwilling and uninterested in (and, eventually, unable to) engage in the unselfish role we’ve played in the world in protecting freedom in previous decades, but I think our withdrawal from the world militarily will have severe impacts on our own economic prosperity and military security (e.g., open sea lanes, free nations based on free markets with the resultant economic prosperity that that produces and that then trade with us, or even anti-ballistic missile base placement in Europe against rogue nations like Iran [it protects us as well as Europe]).

    Disagree we do.

  24. Who would you rather have as commander in chief? Someone who is corrupt and may go to war for self-serving purposes (Clinton), someone who is incompetent and may go to war out of pride, revenge, or rage (Trump), someone who knows nothing about foreign policy and who may go to war because he’s high on drugs (Johnson), or someone who may have different policy opinions, but who is honest and level-headed and has foreign policy experience (McMullin)?

  25. McMullin has the experience we need to fight evil in the world while promoting basic human rights. He has security clearance. I’m not worried about any unknown “skeletons”. With Trumps ties to Russia has is he going to gain any kind of clearance? I certainly don’t trust Clinton with sensitive information. McMullin is pro-life, clintion is pro-death and Trump is pro-trump. I’m voting righteously not strategicly. Sure I might “throw away” my vote but I won’t throw away my soul.

  26. I actually pretty strongly disagree with his assessment that “Mormons are sheep,” that McMullin’s presidential run is all a big scheme by Kristol to promote war, and that unless a war is defending you at your own borders and in your own lands then it is immoral.
    So called Constitutionalists and Libertarians always have pre-WWII ideas about war. The problem is that war changed with 1) the introduction of Hitler’s blitzcreig where a nation could be attacked and fall within a matter of hours and 2) the introduction of an enemy that thrives on having no border, no nation, and whose aim is to maximize death – not just take territory and power. That has dramatically changed war to be IMMEDIATE and EVERYWHERE.
    Yes, I believe that there are plenty of avoidable wars, but may I point out that the founders encouraged the US to never engaged in foreign wars that had nothing to do with them. (The war between Britain and France being the primary example. That wasn’t America’s fight until the War of 1812. Japan was of no concern until Pearl Harbor and Germany was not our battle until the crimes against humanity that they committed). Using the Book of Mormon and President Benson, since this guy likes to use it to push views that he likes, the Nephites went to war to keep the Lamanites from slaughtering the Ammonites. They weren’t even in Nephite territory and yet they felt justified in rescuing the people with their warriors and keeping a presence there until they had sufficient resources to defend themselves (2,000 sons who allied with the Nephites under Helaman’s command).
    I believe that it was President Benson declared that war MAY be justified in self defense OR “when a small, weaker nation is being unjustly crushed by a large ruthless one.” (I also find it interesting that in the Church’s video “Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled,” the church explains that even the Vietnam War had some justification for the containment of the spread of communism).
    Now, I do not believe that every condition of war is justified just because we can find something similar in the scriptures. It requires diligent research, prayer, and revelation.
    Now, the point that I CERTAINLY AGREE WITH is that voters need to know their candidates – not simply vote for who their friends are voting for or who their party is voting for. But don’t listen to someone’s view just because they quote the Book of Mormon a few times. Do your own research and decide for yourself.

  27. “We’re not perfect. I believe Iraq was a mistake. I think we need to be very careful in how we engage overseas. But the truth is that a smarter foreign policy, a foreign policy I advocate for, is one that engages, but more smartly. We don’t let problems become crises. We strengthen our alliances.”

    Quote from CNN interview.

  28. I was at his town hall meeting last night where he spoke for about 20 min and then took questions for 45 min or so. He answered the questions about the US’s role in the world thoughtfully and emphasized not going to war. He said Iraq was a mistake. I am concerned that too many people are just choosing one or two statements to support their own worldview and not looking at the big picture. As I left the meeting last night, I overheard a woman complaining that she couldn’t vote for him because he was against legalizing marijuana. What he said is he’s personally opposed, but it’s a states right issue.

  29. Jordan and Barbara, it is definitely the “in” thing with candidates to say Iraq was a mistake. But McMullin’s proposed policies in Syria are a near repeat of what we did in Iraq, so there is no evidence he has learned anything. Frankly, and based on my research of him, I think he is simply saying what he thinks people want to hear. And of course he could really believe Iraq was a mistake because we didn’t send enough troops, fight long enough, etc, etc. Iraq was a mistake from the beginning because it is not in our sphere of influence. We should have never had anything to do with the many problems in Iraq. It was none of our business. I doubt very much that McMullin believes that.

  30. Great articulation of some of my concerns. That said, I’d vote for McMullin if it meant helping take the popular vote for the state from the two main candidates, and I think McMullin should take his name off the ballot in New Mexico for the same reason. In essence, this wouldn’t be a vote for McMullin, but a vote for whomever the House might put in.

    Here is an article calling for this strategy:

  31. I would rather have a foreign war than a domestic war. The choice is not peace or war; war is already upon us. The only question is where will it be fought.

    I will vote for McMullin, and I would prefer Clinton over Trump, Johnson, or Castle.

  32. I want to THANK the author for writing this article. An article like this is necessary and, in my opinion, long overdue. For reasons that I’ll explain further below, I think McMullin is a threat to our democracy every bit as much as Hillary and Trump are, though in ways very different from them. Before I get into that, I want to add a couple of additional points.

    First, I want to add to the point about executive experience. Many will recall that the knock on President Obama was his lack of executive experience. Based on background alone, McMullin would have this problem. He also has the problem of no political experience (which is Trump’s problem). What some might be forgetting is that we’ve seen some of this inexperience play out already. If you are running a third party candidacy, one of the biggest tasks is getting on the ballot. If you’re the candidate, you should know what it takes to accomplish this, and make sure that your ballot access drives don’t misfire. One of the big accomplishments of the Johnson and the Stein campaigns is how well they managed this important task. As far as McMullin is concerned, he did get on 11 ballots, but he misfired on as many ballots as he got on. He failed in his attempts to get on Alabama, Florida, North Dakota, Ohio, Tennessee, and Wyoming. There may be others, and I am only considering those with deadlines after his August 8 announcement. The failure in Tennessee is especially spectacular, because all he needed was 275 signatures. If you can’t find 275 people to sign a petition for you in a state the size of Tennessee, if that isn’t inept, I don’t know what is. The ones that he did make are not particularly impressive. Except for Virginia and Kentucky, the states had very minimal signature requirements, or he leetched off an existing ballot line that a party already had (I believe this was the case in Arkansas and South Carolina). Louisiana only required that he pay a $500 filing fee. How hard can that be? And then, there is the example of his “running mate.” She was just named. Doesn’t he think that the American people should have more time than he has given them to find out whom he would put a heartbeat away from the Presidency? He did file in many states but with a placeholder, “Nathan Johnson.” Who is that? In many of those states, it’s too late to sub his name out of the ballot. I would submit that this is also something that he should know. In contrast to Johnson and Stein, we know who their running mates are and have for a long time. Bill Weld’s credentials are top notch.

    The second point is that I find the reasons he is running off putting. Based on an interview he did with Martha Raddatz early in his candidacy, he was asked about Hillary and Trump, as well as Johnson and Stein. His answers about why Hillary and Trump are not fit were ok, and what everyone knows. His answer about Stein wasn’t terribly surprising, as he has diametrically opposing views to her. However, his answer about Johnson was off putting. He essentially said that he doesn’t agree with “all” of Johnson’s positions, so that’s why “it’s important for him to run.” By that reasoning, EVERYONE should run for President. To me, he came across as a spoiled child throwing a tantrum for not getting his way.

    Now to the biggest reason for opposing his candidacy. His stated strategy, by his own words, is to win one state, deadlock the electoral college, with him, Trump, and Hillary only getting electoral votes, and then having the House pick him over those two. He would be OK with this, despite the fact that Americans in 39 states can’t vote for him, and despite the fact that he will collect likely only a fraction of a percent of the vote, but Johnson and Stein will collect many millions more votes, but they will be shut out of this process, if it gets to that. If that isn’t undemocratic, I don’t know what is.

    It would seem that he could win, at best, only one state — Utah. If that results in a deadlocked electoral college, and his selection as president, there will be an enormous cry to reform or abolish the electoral college. I’m not sold in that being a good idea. However, I would ask residents of Utah who would vote for them to imagine what a pure popular vote for president would look like. If we were to go that way, small states and their interests would be completely ignored. In the current system, Utah could have a good bit of influence, especially this year. I don’t think the state would want to give that up, but you might lose that if you give your electoral votes to McMullin. Therefore, think long and hard about casting a vote for McMullin. If you don’t like Trump or Hillary (and frankly not many of us do), vote for someone who can be considered by the vast majority, or all of Americans, either Johnson or Stein.

  33. I disagree; with, like, 80% of this post.

    First of all, my eyes glaze over whenever someone talks about “the people backing” this or that candidate.  William Kristol backed Mitt Romney, too; it didn’t make Romney a bad candidate.  So, I am categorically throwing out everything said about Kristol in this article and focusing on McMullin himself.

    Yes, McMullin lacks executive experience.  But, ironically, it was Trump himself who said that bad experience was worse than no experience.  Trump and Clinton have both had truly terrifying experience as executives in their respective fields.  Even Johnson is somewhat questionable, but I’ll get to him in a minute.  The president’s primary role as Chief Executive is to find more “specialized” executives to which he can delegate the running of the Executive Branch.  He needs Cabinet officers to run the various agencies, a Chief of Staff to run the White House, etc., etc., etc.  McMullin is smart enough (I believe) to surround himself with people who actually know how to run these agencies, and more importantly, to run them according to conservative principles.  Again, you can’t necessarily say that about Trump, Clinton, or Johnson.

    Actually, what’s far more important than the role of Chief Executive is the president’s influence over foreign policy.  Trump, as was pointed out in the article, would be terrible at foreign policy.  Johnson, following up on not knowing anything about Aleppo, couldn’t even think of a single foreign leader he respected.  I realize we’re not electing a president for his memory capacity, but you would think anyone running for president would at least know the names of the heads of foreign states.  And we don’t even need to talk about Clinton.

    McMullin, on the other hand, has foreign policy experience from his time in the CIA.  Ronald Reagan chose George H.W. Bush as his running mate for a similar reason.  And McMullin’s policy proposals aren’t truly that alarming, except to alarmists.  Romney himself warned us four years ago that we need to oppose Russia’s aggressiveness, that they were our “number one geopolitical foe”.  He was ridiculed endlessly by Democrats for this, but was proven right in less than a year.  Trump has given no indication that he intends to stand up to Russia, or even that he’s aware of what they’re doing.  Clinton may actually stand up to Russia, but who the heck knows how she’d actually go about it?  McMullin, on the other hand, isn’t talking about invading Russia or even attacking it.  He’s talking about fulfilling our obligations to our NATO allies (an organization that Trump has said is obsolete and that I’m seriously questioning if Johnson could name all its members).  As for China, I wouldn’t characterize his policy as “picking a fight” with them.  McMullin understands the need to project strength on the world stage, especially with people who violate international copyright, hold massive amounts of our national debt, and may in fact be conducting cyberattacks on our country.  Where Trump is a loose cannon and Johnson is unreliable, I think McMullin, for all that he’s inexperienced, shows good judgment. 

  34. If the Electoral College is deadlocked, there is absolutely no chance that McMullin would be picked. The GOP could lose the House — possible, not necessarily bound to happen. But despite the giant sucking sound of GOP officeholders withdrawing support from Trump, were the electoral college to deadlock, and the GOP holds the House, there is absolutely no way they would pick McMullin or Clinton.

    It’s going to be either Clinton or Trump. The reason is that both of these awful candidates are going to garner tens of millions of votes. Trump might even exceed Romney’s vote totals. (And still lose).

    You don’t take away that kind of democratic legitimacy and remain a viable government. There would violence in the streets the like of which we have never seen. We’re almost there already.

  35. Re: Executive experience

    The problems with Obama’s administration didn’t stem from a lack of having run something. They stemmed from his principles. Four years of experience being president didn’t make him any more or less effective during the next four years. His principles determined the outcome the whole time. I don’t see it as an issue whatsoever.

    Principles drive the results of any presidency. They are surrounded by people who actually execute their decisions.

  36. Rich: I have several big problems with Johnson: 1)abortion 2)gay marriage 3)lack of respect for religious freedom 4)a general sense that he feels more comfortable with left-wing people than traditional religious people. He is great on foreign policy and economics and civil liberties, but I get the sense when he talks that he has never even spent the time to get to know any religious people. This is extremely worrisome to me because once he is in a position of power in Washington he will be surrounded by non-religious people, and I see him making some very bad decisions on federal court picks and other issues that could be damaging to religious groups. We already saw this with Johnson relying on the advice of Weld on Supreme Court picks. Weld said one of his favorite justices was Souter, who is a horrible left-wing disaster. On the other hand, Castle is good on abortion, gay marriage and religious freedom and is obviously a religious person himself, and he is also very good on economics, foreign policy and civil liberties. But Castle is the least charismatic person to ever run for national office and will not be elected anything. But at least I can vote for somebody whose positions I agree with in Castle.

  37. Thank you, all, who have posted here.
    It is refreshing to find a conversation that remains on topic, and has very little inflammatory rhetoric!
    Your opinions and observations have enriched me in my thinking!

  38. How was the votes. When Lincoln won? It could happen again……I mean miracles can happen if you believe and have faith that the one who wins will be steadfast and immovable!

  39. No one WANTS war…. but the fact is that war has begun it started with 9-11! Jihadist have declared war but up til now the USA didn’t acknowledge that. They flew planes into our buildings announcing it. That was fairly loud and clear. How can anyone miss that? If we open our eyes to what is happening in Europe we can see what we will soon be experiencing. Its not a peaceful coexistence.

    I love my country. I stand up and hold my hand over my heart when I sing the National anthem. So what is our choice….. #1 a hot head who has no clue, #2 Someone who will let your military deteriorate even more and the military (and unarmed Americans), protecting the laws of the land or #3 someone who is apathetic (roll a joint and lets make love not war ) and will run away. No thank you.

    Evan is not a war mongrel- he is NOT AFRAID! He didn’t start the war, he didn’t even pick a fight! But, he does understands what we are up against and will fight the war we are already involved in!

    EVAN IS A FEDERALIST! I’M ALL IN! #evanmcmullin2016

  40. Unless you are all Gods no-one and I mean no-one knows what the outcome of this election will be! The American people have put themselves in this position by voting for Trump or Clinton or not voting at all. Evan McMillan might not have had as much experience as some others but he has integrity and good judgement and is doing his best to make it that Clinton and Trump don’t have enough to get them over the line to be President. There will always be people who can’t get past thinking the norm so go out of their way to defame a good person. I hope Evan McMullin creates history and wins!!

  41. That was interesting. Valid concerns that made me think. However, on foreign policy, I think the Book of Mormon comparison is somewhat of a missfire, because in the Book of Mormon there were only two nations. There was nobody for the Nephites to be allies with. If there had been other freedom-loving nations, I would think that Captain Moroni or other Nephite leaders would have been allies with them. When the anti-Nephi-Lehis fled their conflict, the Nephites “allied” or absorbed with them, for example. Thus, if I’m going to do a Nephite-Lamanite comparison here, I would have to say that every country that grants their citizens freedom of belief and action are the Nephites, and the rest are the Lamanites. I see no problem with us supporting our allies in Europe, and standing up to the aggression of the “Lamanites” when they threaten the edges of the “Nephite (free)” territory. Doing anything else, I think, would be immoral.

    However, the point about going into other nations was a good point. The Nephites were even counciled not to seek out the Gadianton Robbers in their own lands, lest the Lord would deliver the Nephites into their hands. The Gadianton robbers were a bit like terrorists (coming down and robbing, then returning to the mountains). It makes me wonder if our entire Afghanistan operation was unjustified, and if these drone strikes and even our CIA operations taking out terrorists are justifiable.

    On the same line of reasoning though, there is no example in the Book of Mormon of Lamanites rising up against their oppressive rulers, and requesting help from the Nephites because their rulers have tanks and warplanes (that would be Syria). So that is another question which can’t be directly answered by the Book of Mormon.

  42. That he is Mormon isn’t really the first point I heard about him. I heard he tried hard to get someone else to step up because the current options are a joke. Corrupt Clinton or Toddler Trump. The world is laughing at us. Clinton can be bought and North Korea thinks Trump is a “wise man”…so someone who isn’t a career politician, a person with conservative stances, first-hand experience in hostile countries, and a few years of business and finance experience…sure I’m willing to see what he has to offer over the two parties. And none of that is about being Mormon. Sheep? Sheep would be voting for someone just because you get something free, or just because they are black, just because they are female…or just because they aren’t black or aren’t Mormon or aren’t a woman. Obama has ignored the system of cheques and balances and made executive decisions despite oposition. Hillary is a white collar mob boss. Trump is clueless. The definition of insanity…forgive me if I’m willing to try the road less traveled.

  43. I completely disagree. Americans are naive if they think the world 1) doesn’t need a policeman, 2) any other country could do it better or more morally than us, 3) stopping Russia and China from expanding/ becoming conquering communists again is OK. It isn’t OK. Communism isn’t OK. Supporting/ defending Democratic governments is, I believe, one of America’s “prime directives,” if you will. Freedom shouldn’t just be for us (while we have it), freedom shouldn’t be an option for those willing to fight for it, even if they need a little help. Was Iraq poorly thought out beyond the invasion? Yes. Should, based on all intelligence reports regarding WMDs and Saddam Husein’s BLATANT disregard for the U.N. rules placed on them after Deseret Storm, we have not gone in to Iraq at all? I’m not so sure. I think the intent was good, but the implementation failed to take many variables into consideration. However, if Obama had fought for a status of forces agreement, instead of just pulling (the rug) out (from under so many) after the success of the surge, we wouldn’t be fighting the “JV team” right now.

    I’m very pro- military intervention, largely because I see so much of what they do in terms of service to others, not “immoral war.” What is immoral and unconscionable is letting be live in torture regimes, letting bullying countries / ideologies steal freedom from people, when we could help. War is an often necessary evil because Edmund Burke was right, “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.”

    And- I’ll take McMullin’s resume of experience over Obama’s community organizer credentials any day!

  44. You have misjudged him. I’m sorry you felt you had to write an article about your feelings.

  45. I don’t trust CIA or anyone from Goldman Sachs. Cia are war mongers. So taking Utah away from Trump makes it one step closer for Hillary to be president. You’re going to love the open border, killing of unborn babies up to the day of birth, mobs of refugees that don’t assimilate into American culture and want Sharia Law – have you checked out France and Germany lately? We need Trump.

  46. I didn’t read all the comments here and I rarely comment on political posts but I wanted to point out. I listened to him speak and answer questions last night in Idaho Falls (I think there is a video of it on his facebook). He was asked about war. He said sometimes it’s needed but not without also working through democratically. He says we don’t have money to keep throwing into needless wars and he said although he is proud of his service in Iraq he didn’t think we should have been there.

    If you choose not to vote for Mcmullin that’s fine, the beauty of our government is that everyone can do whatever they like but I thought I would point out that in my experience he didn’t seem overly war driven.

  47. Can we just state the obvious here? With the Republican fallout and the obscene PR fiasco that is Trump, and although we are scrambling to vote for a more upstanding, moral third party candidate in accordance to our consciences, it won’t matter, because it is too little, too late–Clinton is laughing all the way to the White House. No matter how many neverTrumps and/or neverClintons (or never McMullins) exist, Democrats, by and large, are not splintered behind her candidacy, and besides, the appeal of voting in the first female president in our history is too tantalizing for many voters to pass up. She will be our commander-in-chief the next four years. The writing is very much on the wall here, folks.

  48. While I think the article is very well articulated and presents some valid arguments it and the great majority of voters in the US are totally missing the truth in this country. YOUR VOTE DOES NOT MATTER. No matter who is voted our president (major or independent party) they will be controlled by those who hold the purse strings. They cannot accomplish anything without the permission of the rich and powerful. This is not limited to neocons. Conservative and Liberal corporations donate to both/all parties so they have a stake no matter who wins. They allow just enough good things to happen to keep those they need in line. Meanwhile we are in a perpetual state of war and national debt because it is profitable for the corporate elite. IMO, there are only three possible outcomes of our nations current situation. 1. Stay the course until the nation is bankrupt. 2. Impeach any politician immediately who doesn’t support reforms (corporate monies in elections, federal reserve, congressional benefits, etc….) or 3. Out and out rebellion. If #1 continues then #3 is inevitable. It is the history of the world. Those who do not remember history are doomed to repeat it.

  49. ANY prolife candidate who has any chance of beating Trump/Clinton… anyone surges.. .THEY HAVE MY VOTE. No possible way to be worse than those two. I would have went with Libertarian, but they voted an anti-Constitutional-Right-To-Life liberal for who knows what reason… Again, anyone surges.. .THEY HAVE MY VOTE.

  50. An interesting take on the issue from conservative Tom Nichols (@RadioFreeTom) – a series of tweets:

    Here’s why Trumpers (and folks like Hugh Hewitt) should stop asking #NeverTrump guys like me about policy or SCOTUS. /1

    Because this election is no longer about policy. I don’t care what Hillary’s views are on abortion or taxes. (I do, but not right now). /2

    I especially don’t care about Trump’s view on anything, because he doesn’t have any. He has no policies. No plans. Just Trump. /3

    Instead, the election is now between two groups: those supporting a direct attack on our system of government, and everyone else. /4

    This is no longer conservatives vs liberals, or Dems vs GOP. This an ignorant mob trying to destroy the Constitution vs the rest of us. /5

    At this point, Trump’s platform is a farrago of Russian-inspired demands to destroy our system, in order to save his delicate ego. /6

    Trump’s advisors, a clutch of opportunists and kooks, are pushing mad conspiracies. They are thus at odds with all other Americans. /7

    In effect, Trump has removed politics from this election. It’s now about where we all stand on protecting our system of government. /8

    I’m #NeverTrump because I believe in our system, our elections, and our democratic culture, including the peaceful transfer of power. /9

    If you think this is still abt SCOTUS or abortion or anything but your right to vote without threats or foreign influence, you’re wrong. /10

    Take your arguments about right vs left somewhere else. In my view, this is now an election solely about preserving our democracy. /11x

    More about Tom here: http://thefederalist.com/author/tomnichols/

    Messages above on his Twitter account here: https://twitter.com/RadioFreeTom/status/787714045755461633

    The reason I’m posting this, and think it’s worth considering, is this: If you are a supporter of the Republican Party, you have to admit that the Party botched it “Big League” this year in their choice of candidate and in the whole direction the Presidential campaign has taken.

    If you agree with this, and if you want a HEALTHY Republican Party to support again in the future, you have to think about sending *the strongest possible message* to the Party that it is moving in the wrong direction.

    The strongest possible message isn’t voting for McMullin or Johnson or (sorry, but the extremely laughable and essentially unknown) Darrell Castle. Those all (and staying home altogether) are all still half-votes of support for the Republican Party and the essentially evil direction it has taken in this election.

    If you want to send the strongest possible message to one party, your only alternative is to vote for the other major party–the party that has an actual chance of winning against it and taking away its power.

    When you do so, you are not saying that you support this other party or their candidate wholeheartedly or even at all. And you are not betraying your own party or the beliefs that you support. Rather, you are using your vote to send the strongest possible message to your own party that they have gone astray and must change if they want your vote back.

    And when they change, then give your vote back to them. That is what actually being loyal to your party and your beliefs means.

    Voting for any of the other minor parties that have no realistic chance of winning anything is a half measure and only sends a half message to the Republican Party. And to be a serious, viable party again, they need a full message.

    (Or do you actually believe Trump and his antics and his completely non-serious approach to everything from the campaign to his policies really does represent your beliefs?)

  51. Wallace, while in a certain statistical sense no one vote matters, the idea that votes don’t matter and those who hold the purse strings control everything seems dubious. There are several problems with this not the least of which in a lack unanimity among those with the purse strings. Secondly voting simply does matter. You can outspend significantly and still lose. I tend to think the amount of time Senators and Congress people spend seeking donations is a problem – but primarily because that’s taking their time.

  52. Thank you for this essay. You have confirmed that I can never support a candidate with Evan McMullin’s views and apparently personal experience with our foreign policy in the Middle East. To me, his 10 years of experience with the CIA completely disqualifies him. The USA has directly funded, armed, and supported ISIS for the purpose of destabilizing Syria because Assad refused to cooperate with the proposed natural gas pipeline from Qatar to Turkey via Syria.

  53. I’m am truly surprised at the conclusions that I see here. I don’t think that you have actually studied the man, listened to his talks or spent time contemplating the consequences of any other choice. What are we to do? Close the borders, pull out of the world and hope for the best? The last time we tried to do that, we had World War II on our hands. What I have gained from listening to McMullin is that he is very smart and would do everything possible to keep us out of war, by keeping the conflicts small. Putting your head in the sand will do nothing to make the United States or the World safe, it is a naive proposal at the very least and utterly irresponsible. I would certainly trust a man who has been there and knows what is happening over plutocrats who have observed at a distance from a plush armchair.

  54. Has anyone looked@ the contribution sheets to the Clinton Foundation, your Evan McMullin is a prominent contributor to their foundation, that is why I will #nevervotemcmullin!!!

  55. A vote for McMullin is a protest vote in Utah against Trump and Clinton. Of course, McMullin will not win the national election or even throw the election to the House of Representives. But his rise in the Utah polls these last few weeks show that Utahns really don’t like either major candidate. Trump lost the election on a bus in 2005 and Clinton isn’t much better for being honest all these years. On election night, if McMullin wins in Utah, it will show the rest of the country what we really think about the election and it will get a lot of news coverage showing the rest of the country we have the courage to send a strong message about getting better candidates to run for President.

  56. Quick question: how do you define Bush’s foreign policy as a failure? We had allies everywhere who trusted us, we worked together to check the power of enemy nations, we killed our mutual enemies/terrorists over there instead of bringing them over here, etc. Was it perfect? No, not really. We made mistakes, we were still learning, but overall, I felt the world was much safer under Bush than it has been under Obama.

  57. Clint,

    A different Mike here, but Trump had lost a lot of votes long before the 2005 tapes came out. Once it was clear that Trump would be the GOP candidate, many that I associate with and I have been scouring the third party options.

  58. Thank you for posting this. A lot of the points aren’t deal breakers for me, but I appreciate the thoughtfulness that went into this post. This was useful to me as I plan on voting third-party. I will keep these items in mind and endeavor to make an informed decision.

  59. I hear all this whoolpa about McMullen, but I can’t find what he actually did at Goldman Sachs. Is he associated with Harry Reid? I don’t hear any fresh ideas from McMullen either. Something about him just doesn’t sit right with me. Never Hillary for sure. I am sold on Trump. With so much against him it made me research him deeper to find the media’s darling is of course Hillary. I find that she is entangled with Comey, Lorretta Lynch to name a few. Hillary has blood on her hands. She failed us as Sec of State. She failed the men in Benghazi and then she and Barry lied to the world, orchestrated their lie about a video. Trumps appeal is that he is fresh and new. He is a businessman. He said a bad word, guess what – I have said many bad words. I am not perfect and neither is he, and he has said so. People want to get the corruption out of DC, Trump hasn’t been bought. He can get rid of those evil leaders. So don’t kill me for thinking this way, but I want to vote to stop the continued corruption of Hillary which will be a follow on to Obama. My vote is important to me. McMullen seems like a nice guy but I just don’t know enough about his political past, nor can I find it. TRUMP for the win.

  60. I mostly just skimmed the comments, so forgive me if someone has already made this point or a similar one. In response to your arguments involving the Book of Mormon, Geoff, I would point out that while a general theme, yes, is to only fight in defense and not go on the offensive, you’ll remember that Captain Moroni did everything he could to prevent a war with the Lamanites before it broke out. He recognized the threat that Amalickiah posed and took action to stop him before he gained the power necessary to start the war he wanted. I feel that McMullin’s policies are meant to prevent war by eliminating threats before they get too much power. Then, if we are, unfortunately, unsuccessful in eliminating those threats and war breaks out, we will use our power only to defend ourselves, we will push for peaceful solutions, and be compassionate to our enemies. Also, in order to be able to defend ourselves should war break out, we need to fortify our armed forces, preparing for war much like Captain Moroni did.

  61. Great synopsis and argument. Articles like these are why I have now use Millennial Star as my “go to” news source for LDS/Mormon issues and opinions, rather than Deseret News or LDS Living. Keep it up!

  62. I am glad to see people talking and sharing opinions and not condoning the evil actions of both Trump and Hillary by voting for them. I think this election is less about who is right, but WHAT is right. We need to separate persons from principles and principles from policies.

  63. This is well written and I appreciate a civil approach with very organized and clear thoughts. Unfortunately, the title of this article is extremely repelling. I can recognize good candidates that deeply respect the U.S. Constitution. There are only two in the race. 1. Darrell Castle 2. Evan McMullin

    Be #NeverTrump, Be #NeverHillary, Be #NeverJohnson, Be #NeverStein, fight the good fight against those who seek to destroy and weaken our great nation. I for one will jump for joy if either McMullin or Castle can stop Trump or Clinton from entering the Oval Office. Shame on anyone motivated by jealousy that their favorite candidate didn’t get the traction that their 2nd favorite candidate is getting.

    I voted for Ted Cruz, but I would never slander Jonn Kasich and try to stop a movement that could save America. I am a Mormon. I did not vote for Mitt Romney. I voted for Dr. Robert Bradley (Castle’s running mate). I did not blindly flock to McMullin like a sheep because he was Mormon. I fought and campaigned for Castle all summer. Nobody was interested. My voice fell on deaf ears. When I heard breaking news that a 40 year old Mormon CIA officer was announcing his bid for the Whitehouse, I face palmed. I was so upset that it was one of “my own” trying to make a “Hail Mary” bid. I feared that it was futile to experience national approval as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

    Then I showed up at his campaign launch to hear what he had to say. There I met a brilliant man who answers questions straight. He is forthright, intellectual, honest, sincere, deeply respectful of the 10th amendment and all of those preceding it.

    I witnessed this man in closed door meetings stand for proper principles in government even at the risk of criticism from his own. I saw a man that brought hope and unity to a state in which a growing number of registered voters were expressing their decision to not vote this year.

    Evan brought hope. Evan ignited interest. Evan is not a war monger as you spin it. If we do not strengthen our armament, your sons and daughters won’t die in an unnecessary war in foreign lands—they will die in their homeland under attack to military forces emboldened by America’s weakened state.

    Think twice before you try to stop the best chance you’ve got of preserving this nation’s constitution. #LoveDarrellCastle #LoveEvanMcMullin #LoveTheConstitution

  64. So if you don’t like Evan fine, just please pick lanother 3rd party candidate.
    If you vote for the lesser of two evils you are still voting for evil. That makes you evil (unless you think one is not evil that is)

  65. Geoff, I appreciate the article and Stacy Stine’s on her site regarding McMullin and voting in general by Mormons. I state this up front: I am proudly for Trump.

    First off, let me explain my background, because according to those voting for McMullin, I have as much experience as McMullin, if not more so, in the areas of the intelligence community and foreign policy, and yet, I am not naive to believe I can or should be POTUS. I have lived and served over in the Middle East for well over a decade and have traveled abroad throughout Iraq, Afghanistan, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Dubai, West Africa, etc chasing down bad guys all over. I am an active LDS member and have been a part of America’s finest SEAL Teams. I have seen and participated first hand in what we would read about with wars between the Lamanites and Nephites. It isn’t a pretty scene. I have also briefed America’s highest four star Generals that you read about in the papers. I have ran sources in Human Intelligence and targeted many of the worst insurgents/jihadists that are known to my fellow citizens and Latter-Day Saints.

    I say all of this to say that I believe that McMullin is fluffing on some of his background to make him more appear more qualified than he actually is to run for the highest position in the land. I have been in and around many political/foreign policy decisions and know the inner workings of how these decisions are made for political reasons. As a side bar, it always grinds all of us in the intelligence community (IC) when we hear that “the intelligence was bad…” This is 99% of the time blatantly false. Here is your clue: it is typically said by someone in politics or with a tie to political motives. The intelligence is what it is and too often the intelligence is twisted to fit a political picture (see recent news reports on this in the last year).

    Back to McMullin…we need to realize what our vote means. A MAJOR political party WILL and DOES run the country. As of right now, we have TWO parties that have legitimate shots at running our country. With this said, a vote for another candidate is literally wasting your vote. You can and should cast it if that is how you feel but until we can spread the votes out to five or six or ten parties our votes will continue to be wasted. The logical decision is to vote for one of these two parties who are going to mostly (not always) resemble your beliefs. Since the days of Lincoln, this has been the R party for members of the Church. Some have said above that “I am going to look at people individually”. I am sorry but that is just being ignorant of how are process (Congress) works. Once elected and seated in Wash DC, one has to CHOOSE a party to align with to receive any type of funding, assistance with getting bills passed back home in your district or state, etc. McMullin likely is a R and will vote with the party, however, he has NO chance of winning (no name recognition, funding, didn’t qualify on the majority of the states ballots, and where in the HECK was he from the beginning of the primaries-isn’t that kind of cheating the system?). This is so blatantly obvious that he has no shot is why I shake my head and do not understand why so many of my fellow members would be voting for a person without a chance to effect any change back in DC. McMullin should run for Senate or as a Representative first and build his name recognition and bona-fides.

    Briefly on Trump, many people have quoted sites and polls that are so laughable as they are biased in their motivations to push a narrative to influence your opinion, which seems to have worked. When looking at polls or any articles, one needs to know the source of the information to judge its validity. This is basic source 101 schooling. When those on here are pushing polls to show either Trump’s failures, or McMullins rise they need to look at the crosstabs and verify that they are neutral (non-biased) and one will find that in the majority of these the polls are funded by the very people who are Never Trump or pro-HIllary or in this instance of Utahn’s vote, Pro-McMullin. Old axiom in the IC is “follow the money”. I also find it hypocritical of members who point to Trump’s comments made 11 years ago and one’s that he has repented of and yet many in the Church want to still hold him to these comments…11 years ago!! what happened to forgiveness?? See one thing that makes the Lord upset is how many members feel so high and mighty to hold their nose above so many that they feel they are undeserving of our respect. This is also why “Utah Mormons” have that label on them because they look down at non-members. This has been counseled to us numerous times in General Conf that that attitude needs to change.

    Trump will actually win this in a landslide to the chagrin to many Utahn’s disappointment and then realize that Trump will end up being a great POTUS as was Reagan…who also had a second marriage, WAS pro choice, raised (and lowered) taxes, provided Amnesty, and was also somewhat of an isolationist. Besides all that about Reagan, who I voted for, he ranks in my top three greatest Presidents of our country.

    Thank you! Go Navy!

  66. Perhaps the reason Evan McMullin puts national security first on his list of priorities is not because he is a war hawk but because national security is one of the few responsibilities given to the federal arm of government by the constitution. So that would mean most of the other issues aren’t legally under his control. The federal govt has stolen or usurped many states’ rights.

    I didn’t say I’m voting for Mr. McMullin. I don’t know enough about him to vote for him. Because of his lack of experience he might just get bulldozed. On the other hand, maybe we are being set up. I question his association with the Council on Foreign Relations. These are the ‘insiders’. So far I’m voting for Trump because he gets things done and his expressed values are mostly agreeable to me if he’s being honest about them. And Hillary belongs in jail. I would vote Trump just to keep her out of office. McMullin and Finn are still mysteries. I’d be interested to know who is funding their presidential run. Since their values align more closely to Trump’s expressed values, I would especially want to know if Hillary or her cronies has had any monetary input. Follow the money.

    I don’t believe all these polls that say Hillary is clearly winning. How can that be when she can hardly draw a crowd and Trump fills arenas multiple times a day?

Comments are closed.