What is there left to say? Donald Trump supporters think Hillary Clinton is the devil. Hillary Clinton supporters think Donald Trump would lead us straight to hell.
While neither is true in a literal sense, we believe it’s the second proposition that rings much closer to reality than it does to hyperbole.
To non-Trump supporters, it boggles the mind that anyone — especially friends, colleagues, family members, people we love and respect — could vote for a person who is so obviously unqualified to be president of the United States.
We understand his appeal to those who want to see an outsider shake things up in Washington, to those who have suffered through economic hardships and to the disenfranchised. Legitimate issues such as national security, the economy, the 2nd Amendment, the Supreme Court and the Affordable Health Care Act have every place at the center of a national conversation about where we want our country to go over the next four years. Republicans deserved a candidate who could have made an actual case for championing those issues.
Instead, the party got Donald Trump, a man who has brought out the very worst in American society, giving new voice to white nationalists, anti-Semites, sexists and xenophobes. They have found a candidate they can enthusiastically support.
What confounds us is how good people — again, our friends, our co-workers, our loved ones — can look past that. How they can look past the folly of building a wall across the southern border and getting Mexico to pay for it, Trump’s calling climate change a hoax concocted by the Chinese, his admiration of Vladimir Putin, his spat with a Muslim Gold Star family, his refusal to release his tax returns ... the list goes on and on.
Then, of course, there’s his treatment of women.
This race has seen so many twists and turns that it seems like ancient history when we first heard the Access Hollywood tape where Trump professed his love for kissing women and grabbing them by the genitals just because he could. Because he was a star.
Don’t forget that tape when you head to the polls. That’s who Donald Trump really is, and calling it “locker room talk” is an insult to every woman and every victim of sexual harassment and assault. And to every man who respects women as equals.
Of course, as they have been from the beginning, Hillary Clinton’s emails keep popping back into the national consciousness, eroding her support and credibility each time they rear their ugly subject lines. This issue alone has made it too easy for voters to lend their support to Trump. Questions about her truthfulness have dogged her for years.
Did she make a mistake with that private email server? Absolutely. Was it a crime? Not according to the FBI, which did not file any charges back in July. We don’t know what will come of the newly reopened investigation, but the agency’s decision to publicly announce that it was diving back into the case — just days before an election, without even knowing the contents of those newly discovered emails — reeks of political meddling, regardless of the outcome.
Hillary Clinton is clearly not a saint, but she is far more qualified to serve as the next president of the United States.
In this contest, it’s a former first lady, U.S. Senator from New York and U.S. Secretary of State vs. a real estate developer, beauty pageant owner, reality TV star and frequent guest of Howard Stern. One has dedicated her life to public service and the lives of families and children. The other has dedicated his life to ... himself.
We set out to write this editorial in the hopes of convincing a few people — those closest to us, in particular — to vote for Hillary Clinton. But this election has been so volatile, so divisive, that it seems like no amount of logic, reason or sanity can be applied to any lasting effect. On either side.
There are two third-party candidates in the race, and many people also have said they are going to vote for a write-in, but the fact is that either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton will be the next president of the United States. Pick which one you think is less likely to bring ruinous damnation and hellfire to this country ... which, by the way, despite all its problems, is already pretty great.
We’ll leave you with this one last thought: We live in a region that includes the home of women’s rights. Where people like Susan B. Anthony, Lucretia Mott, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Mary Ann M’Clintock dedicated their lives to fighting for a woman’s right to vote. They succeeded, and in doing so inspired generations of women to keep fighting — for equal rights and equal pay, a struggle that continues today.
In this critical moment, it’s time to elect the first woman to the office of President of the United States, despite her shortcomings. History’s daughters will thank you.