The media is afire, after Hillary Clinton, the eternal millstone around America’s neck, fired off a slanderous smear against Jill Stein.  In a recent podcast interview with former Obama campaign manager, David Plouffe, the former secretary of state speculated that the Russians were grooming a Democratic candidate to run third party.  She claimed “they know they can’t win without a third-party candidate.” She elaborated, “I don’t know who it’s gonna be, but I guarantee they will have a vigorous third-party challenge in the key states that they most need it.”

The mainstream press has made a lot of inferences on who the speculation is about, regarding the Democrat who will supposedly run third party, and they seem to have settled on Tulsi Gabbard, the Member of Congress from Hawaii.  Clinton never actually named Gabbard, but she was crystal clear about her attack on Jill Stein. She said, “…that’s assuming Jill Stein will give it up, which she might not, because she’s also a Russian asset.”

Give up what, exactly?  The definition of slander is “the action or crime of making a false spoken statement damaging to a person’s reputation.”  It is a scandalous falsehood to accuse Jill Stein of being a Russian asset.

These types of salacious comments come from the center-right Democratic Party establishment, of which Clinton is the high priestess. Now she has stooped to promoting baseless conspiracy theories, just like Trump.

Even though Clinton won the national popular vote by some 3 million votes, she lost in electoral votes.  Yet, in 2000, fresh from the Supreme Court decision to stop counting Florida votes and crown Bush, Clinton called for the abolition of the electoral college.  In those days, she said, “I believe strongly that in a democracy, we should respect the will of the people and to me, that means it’s time to do away with the Electoral College and move to the popular election of our president.”

So what happened?  Was it too hard? Clinton never followed through. How many times do the Democrats need to lose to the Electoral College, before they realize that it’s time to abolish it?  The last two Republican presidents, Bush and Trump, were elected by the Electoral College after coming in second in the popular vote. You would think the Democrats would do something about that, like taking up the answer Jill Stein has advocated: election of the president by a national popular vote with ranked choice voting. That would end the problem of vote splitting. Instead, Clinton and the Democrats blame the Greens instead of themselves for failing to change an anti-democratic flaw in our presidential elections.

Putin didn’t elect Trump. The Electoral College and Clinton’s own poorly-executed campaign did. She needs to look in the mirror and stop smearing Jill Stein to make excuses for her own failures.

Conversely, Jill Stein has taken the people’s will to heart. She has never left the campaign for ranked-choice voting for offices all the way up to president, for election integrity, and for overall electoral reforms.  Her recount efforts led to a settlement with Pennsylvania where voting machines must now use a voter-verifiable paper ballot.  This is a crucial reform and we have Jill Stein’s efforts to thank for that.

The struggle for people, peace and planet over profit has been Jill’s life’s work. She advocates for a world where dialog and humanitarian efforts lead the way.  This message is championed by Green Party activists the world over, while Hillary Clinton’s war policies have made our cause harder to achieve. The wreckage that Clinton has left behind in Ukraine, in Libya, in Honduras, in Haiti, and beyond has made achieving a peaceful world all the more difficult.

But like Jill, we still have hope.  It’s time to put to bed these ridiculous accusations about Jill and the Russians.  It’s time to ignore Hillary Clinton and focus on fight for election integrity, for peace, and for reversing the climate meltdown, growing economic inequality, and the new nuclear arms race.

It’s time to leave Hillary Clinton’s evidence-free, self-serving speculations behind.  Go home, Hillary; you’re irrelevant.

Howie Hawkins 2020

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