Tag Archives: Evan McMullin

Evan McMullin – Brought to you by…

evan-mcmullin-not-conservative-savior-r

By Clint Bishop

Evan McMullin has surged into the spotlight in Utah this past week, actually surpassing Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton in one poll and running a statistical tie in a couple of others. This has garnered the former House of Representatives Chief Policy Director significant momentum nationally among self-proclaimed conservatives over the past week, particularly #NeverTrumpers. Having entered the race on August 8th, 2016, one would think that Mr. McMullin were on the ballot in every state, had irreproachable financial backing and grassroots stucture, and were the perfect answer for true conservatives who feel disenfranchised by the Republican nomination of Donald J. Trump. Let’s take a look.

‘Who Bankrolls Evan McMullin?’, ‘ Firestorm of Media Attention out of the Gate’, and ‘Who Were These Utah Pollsters and What Led Up to the Past Week’s Polls?’ 

Who Bankrolls Evan McMullin? Brief History 

The Better For America PAC (BFA) was founded earlier in 2016 in an attempt to offer the moderate, neo-conservative establishment wing of the #NeverTrump movement an alternative to Mr. Trump. BFA was founded by Mitt Romney donor John Kingston III and pollster Joel Searby, along with Democrat strategists Ileana Wachtel and Kahlil Byrd.

Ileana Wachtel and Kahlil Byrd left Better for America in order to form the Stand Up America Super PAC so they would be able to directly raise campaign money for Evan McMullin.

Ileana Wachtel’s resumé couldn’t be more progressive if she had represented Karl Marx himself. Don’t take my word for it, check her LinkedIn. As recently as last year she was in charge of

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Image from http://www.sistergiant.com

press releases for the ‘Sister Giant Conference‘, which featured keynote speaker Bernie Sanders and advertised “Williamson will moderate talks given by former congressman Dennis Kucinich, civil rights attorney Lisa Bloom, progressive talk show host and author Thom Hartmann, food movement leader Elizabeth Kucinich, host and co-founder of The Young Turks Cenk Uygur, and Lynne Lyman, California state director of the Drug Policy Alliance.”, all whom were to be in attendance.

Kahlil Byrd’s background is only slightly less impressive… to a Hillary supporter. He launched his political career as communications director and senior strategist for the successful campaign of Mitt Romney successor, Democrat Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, just before his term membership with the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). Although McMullin’s policies will not be touched in this article, it’s important to note that he, too, is a CFR term member (2011-present). Former Governor Deval Patrick (D) was on the shortlist for Hillary Clinton’s Vice-Presidential picks before choosing Tim Kaine. David Axelrod participated in Deval Patrick’s campaign bid as well.

Evan McMullin was the last of a long line of Republican names thrown around by Bill Kristol, the neo-conservative editor of The Weekly Standard. Actually, I’m not even sure Kristol mentioned McMullin. Evan, himself, states that he simply “decided” that he would run. I suppose the BFA ballot efforts, which had only yielded access to two states at the time, was just a coincidental bonus by having been formed? After even unknown journalist David French declined to accept the offer, the search went stale. Kristol had even stated at one point in March that he’d rather see Hillary Clinton win than to witness a Donald Trump presidency. BFA strategist Rick Wilson recently admitted that even Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s name was thrown around in their quest to thwart Donald Trump’s path to the White House. I’m a fan of The Rock but do these sound like strategists who were “in it to win it”?

Firestorm of Media Attention Out of the Gate. Why?

As a former Republican who was appalled and alarmed by the exorbitant amount of free advertising given to Donald Trump during the Republican Primaries, I can’t help but wonder the same regarding Evan McMullin. Don’t others?

In Donald Trump’s case, there was at least the rare phenomenon of a foul-mouthed, crass

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Image Source – Variety.com

businessman conducting himself as childishly as possible, yet leading the polls. Most of us could see right through the favorable media coverage and realize that the liberal mainstream media actually wantedTrump in against Hillary in order to throw the election her way once the party conventions were held.

In Evan McMullin’s case, however, Gary Johnson and Jill Stein had been gaining steam nationally as 3rd Party candidates. The conservative side of the #NeverTrump movement was beginning to narrow down their choices between Constitution Party’s Darrell Castle and America’s Party nominee Tom Hoefling. Evan McMullin was entering the race with less than 200 Twitter followers, no name recognition, ballot access in two states with TWENTY-SIX states already having passed their deadlines upon his entering the race (to put that in perspective, he couldn’t have surpassed Darrell Castle’s ballot access from day 1), most remaining states were closing access just two days later on August 10th, there was no party to promote the growth of as an independent candidate (perhaps part of the reasoning?), and his greatest asset was his most recent job as House of Representatives Chief Policy Director – you know? The House of Representatives that has a whopping approval rating of 14.7%!

Despite all the aforementioned, McMullin received an interview on every mainstream media outlet within one day of entering, and many others within one week: Kelly File on Fox News on 08/08/16Morning Joe on MSNBC on 08/09/16CNN on 08/09/16ABC News on 08/09/16, the Hugh Hewitt Show on 08/09/16, Bloomberg Politics on 08/09/16, and so on.

Can you guess how many interviews Jill Stein received on many of these stations? How about Darrell Castle? There are SEVEN presidential candidateswith ballot access exceeding that of Evan McMullin. Them? This amount of press coverage for someone with zero viability is unprecedented, especially considering the plight of actual third parties any given election cycle.

Perhaps the most telling interview was that of Glenn Beck. Glenn had sent an open invitation to Constitution Party candidate Darrell Castle back in June, on air. Following the invitation the Castle campaign and hoards of supporters close to the campaign attempted for weeks to cash in the offer to no avail. The national coordinator for ballot access for the Constitution Party literally called in to the radio show and sat for hours at a time on hold, simply to never have anyone return to the line. Twitter was lit up, Beck’s Facebook feeds, nothing…

Within three days of entering the race, his fellow Mormon Glenn Beck had Evan McMullin on the show, but had not yet had Darrell Castle (nor his LDS running mate) on his show. In fact, Castle was forced onto the Pat & Stu Show when he was finally accepted on The Blaze and was diminished to an 8 minute interview. Evan McMullin received a 33 minute interview, failed the only two tests he was given by the Beck crew, then was invited back on 10/13/16 (while being mistakenly credited with Darrell Castle’s ballot access in the headline) and 10/14/16 for two days of interviews on his show.

The Utah Media Leading Up to the Recent Poll Spikes and the Utah Pollsters

Perhaps the most astonishing find in researching this phenomena was the favoritism bestowed upon Evan McMullin by the Utah media. Ben McClintock of defendingutah.org

utah-media
image from defendingutah.org, Ben McClintock article ‘Utah Media Bias with Reporting on Independent Candidates’

must have wondered the same. He released simple research just over one week ago, after the first poll showing McMullin closing the gap on Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. Of the two major news outlets in Utah, KSL TV and The Salt Lake Tribune, Evan McMullin had received over 4800 mentions, only surpassed by Gary Johnson among 3rd Party Candidates jointly, but still with over FIVE TIMES the mentions of Gary Johnson or Jill Stein on KSL. The Darrell Castle campaign only pooled 13 mentions out of both sources combined. Why such a discrepancy? After all, Darrell Castle’s running mate, Dr. Scott N. Bradley, is a Utah native as well and has actually ran for a U.S. Senate seat twice.

So what’s the big deal as long as the polls listed everyone over a certain percentage of national ballot access? It would be fair game, right? There in lies another problem. All five polls in the recent RealClear Politics polling only listed five candidates; Clinton, Trump, Johnson, Stein, and McMullin. The polls are listed here: EmersonHeat StreetCBS NewsMonmouth, and Y2 Analytics. Ever heard of any of them except CBS or Monmouth? Nah? Me neither. Those two have Trump leading while the others show McMullin in a statistical tie or in the lead. It only takes one to start the unearned momentum, that was Y2 Analytics.

Should you worry about who is bringing us Evan McMullin?

My advice is a resounding “Yes!”. Why wouldn’t we worry about Evan McMullin when the circumstances surrounding his bid for the presidency are far more suspicious and just as advantageous for the left as Donald Trump’s run? Why, as conservatives, would we give him a pass? Because he’s a more eloquent speaker? Are we really so gullible and unprincipled. I said early in the article that I would not touch upon Evan McMullin’s policies and I won’t. I will leave a couple of links for that, however. The information in the first link was meticulously researched and the sources for all information within it are linked throughout the article. The second link is a comparison chart between the main four center-to-right candidates in the race. The information regarding Evan McMullin in the chart was extracted from the article in the first link.

If this were ever truly about principles, constitutionalism, and conservatism; then at least do your due diligence. Read them. God Bless.

Article 1

Article 2

McMullin to Appear On the South Carolina Ballot

Evan McMullin for President

McMullin campaign Press Release:

The South Carolina State Election Commission has recognized Evan McMullin as a candidate for President. McMullin will appear on the ballot in South Carolina as the nominee of the Independence Party of South Carolina.

“Like Americans everywhere, many of us in South Carolina have been watching this year’s presidential process with growing anger and disappointment. If this country has come to the point where the choices we are offered are either Trump or Clinton, then there is something very wrong with our process,” said Wayne Griffin, Chair of the South Carolina Independence Party.

Chairman Griffin went on to say, “When Evan McMullin and his team reached out to us to offer an alternative to the rabid intolerance of Trump and the privileged insider trading of Clinton, I felt it was a good choice. McMullin believes we need crucial political reforms to open our process, that we need to find new ways for black and white Americans to connect with each other, and that we need an independent movement to unite the American people. For that, and for having the courage to take a stand against the corruption of major party politics, the South Carolina Independence Party is proud to endorse him and to give him our ballot line this November.”

South Carolina is the 9th state where McMullin has gained ballot access in just under 4 weeks of launching his bid. In addition to South Carolina he has already secured access in Utah, Iowa, Colorado, Louisiana, Arkansas, Idaho, Virginia, and Minnesota.

“I’m honored to be the Independence Party of South Carolina’s presidential candidate. I look forward to bringing our message of greater opportunity, security, and a better choice to the people of South Carolina,” said McMullin.

Former Senator Slade Gorton endorses Evan McMullin

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Former senator Slade Gorton

Press release from EvanMcMullin.com, September 2nd, 2016:

SEATTLE, WA – Former United States Senator Slade Gorton (R-WA) today endorsed Evan McMullin for President of the United States.

“Evan represents a new generation of American leadership,” said Gorton. “I am deeply impressed with Evan’s knowledge, seriousness, and his unique background. He’s the kind of leader who can unify America in a time when both major party candidates have divided it.”

Gorton, a deeply respected two-term Republican U.S. Senator from Washington State, served in the U.S. Senate from 1981-87 and from 1989-2001. He was a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, served on the 9/11 Commission and now serves on the board of the bipartisan Partnership for a Secure America. He began his career in the Washington State House of Representatives, then served as
Washington Attorney General.

“I am deeply honored by Senator Gorton’s support,” said McMullin. “His decades of public service were marked by a strong commitment to keeping our nation safe, in seeking bipartisan solutions for our toughest national problems, and in working to enhance our economy through both trade and technology. I look forward to Slade’s counsel and knowledge in the coming campaign.”

For more information contact:

Rick Wilson 202-670-4320
Rina Shah 202-507-9583

Evan McMullin campaign: “We intend to win Utah”

In a new video released earlier today by the Evan McMullin presidential campaign, McMullin’s chief strategist Joel Searby said:

We’re building our Utah victory operation, where we are actually going to go in Utah. And that is, I think – will largely be driven by the some of the folks in this room, saying “here’s what think we need to do to go get that done. There’s so much energy in Utah for Evan, and so we wanna leverage that energy and have grassroots activity happening out of here but spreading to the entire country. But I envision both a very traditional effort, but also being really  creative with some of the digital tools that we have. And we intend to win Utah. 100% clear, that’s the goal.

As of today, according to Wikipedia, Evan McMullin is on the ballot in 8 states: Utah, Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Idaho, Louisiana, Minnesota and Virginia, for a total access to 62 Electoral College votes.

Virginia Receives Four Presidential Petitions

Ballot Access News

The Virginia deadline for independent presidential petitions, and the presidential nominees of unqualified parties, is August 26. The state received four petitions that may have enough valid signatures: for Rocky De La Fuente, Gary Johnson, Evan McMullin, and Jill Stein. Because most of the Johnson signatures were turned in early, the state has already determined that Johnson petition is valid. The state is still working on checking the Stein, McMullin, and De La Fuente petitions.

The Constitution Party submitted a petition, but it has already been held not to have enough valid signatures, because the number of signatures was below 5,000, and the requirement is 5,000. The Independent Green Party turned in a petition for Gail Parker, but it only has 4,312 signatures, so it is not valid.

Since November 1997, the only ballot-qualified parties in Virginia have been the Democratic and Republican Parties.

Tennessee Accepts Five Independent Presidential Petitions

Ballot Access News

The Tennessee Secretary of State says that five independent presidential petitions have enough valid signatures:

1. Gary Johnson (Libertarian Party)
2. Jill Stein (Green Party)
3. Rocky De La Fuente (independent)
4. Alyson Kennedy (Socialist Workers Party)
5. Mike Smith (independent)

The Secretary of State seems to have rejected these six petitions:

1. Darrell Castle (Constitution Party)
2. James Germalic (independent)
3. Kyle Kopitke (independent)
4. David Limbaugh (independent)
5. Evan McMullin (Better for America)
6. Emidio Soltysik (Socialist Party)

Some of these results had already been announced. It is very surprising that Darrell Castle’s petition was rejected. It contained 500 signatures, and was circulated by motivated volunteers. Castle lives in Tennessee. He will be seeking to re-validate signatures. The Secretary of State has not yet released the data on the number of valid signatures for each of the rejected petitions.

Mike Smith lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Here is his web page.

Jim Hedges petitioned in Tennessee, and probably had enough valid signatures, but just before he submitted his petition, two of his presidential elector candidates changed their mind and said they would not serve, and they refused to sign the candidacy document.

McMullin Campaign Fails To Get On Tennessee Ballot.

Evan McMullin needed 275 signatures to get on the Tennessee ballot. He got 129. Read more HERE.

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McMullin Campaign Ballot Access Plan Memo

Dan Phillips: Evan McMullin? NeverTrump Still Doesn’t Get It

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Evan McMullin

Dan Phillips, also known as Red Phillips, is an IPR contributor. He originally published the following article regarding the entry of independent candidate Evan McMullin into the presidential race on August 10th, 2016 at EconomicPopulist.org:’

We have long been promised that if the convention coup plot failed, as everyone who knows anything about the process knew it would, and Donald Trump emerged as the Republican nominee, that the NeverTrump bitter-enders planned to put forth an independent challenger to Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton to represent self-proclaimed “real conservatism” and/or “real Republicanism.” After some teasing by author Brad Thor that never materialized, NeverTrump has found its candidate. It is … drum roll please … wait for it … Republican House functionary Evan McMullin.

I didn’t think it was possible for NeverTrump to field a more underwhelming candidate than David French, but they have managed to do it. At least die-hard NeverTrumpers and Trump supporters had heard of French due to his incessant Trump bashing at National Review, but not even wonky political obsessives have heard of this guy.

I have long said that NeverTrumpers were astoundingly clueless and didn’t understand the dynamic of this campaign or how the paradigm has likely (hopefully) been forever changed by it. They ran in the primary and continue to run a campaign about who is the most pristine “conservative” as defined by highly flawed movement “conservative” standards, but that’s not the campaign many Republican primary voters were responding to. A plurality of GOP voters were more interested in who is going to best represents us against them.

The choice of McMullin to head the NeverTrump independent ticket demonstrates that they still don’t get it. They don’t even remotely get it. Sometimes in the world of internet pontificating an op-ed just writes itself. An op-ed skewering McMullin is such a case. It just flows effortlessly off the pen. The guy is a veritable caricature of what is wrong with NeverTrump. If I didn’t know better, I could imagine him being a psyop parody of all that is wrong with NeverTrump in an attempt to discredit them. (He is a former spook.)

McMullin does have some impressive credentials, as I conceded that David French has some impressive credentials. They just aren’t the kind of credentials, notably name recognition, that make someone a good candidate to be a late starting supposedly credible independent challenger for President. The less credentialed but much better known Brad Thor would have been a better option if he had decided to run.

That said, I’m not going to focus on McMullin being a no name ID no-hoper, because he is reasonably well credentialed by independent and third party standards, which despite NeverTrump’s pretenses, is how he should be judged. The problem is the nature of his credentials. Where to even start?

After graduating from BYU, a not insignificant fact as I will discuss below, he joined the CIA. NeverTrump security state agenda item: check. Now while Trump is not where I would like him to be on the security state issue, I get the sense that Trump’s support for the security state is a kind of man on the street, tough on crime and terrorism support. I do not get the sense that Trump is ideologically committed to the security state in the way the NeverTrump brain trusts are. I don’t know if a history of being a CIA agent necessarily turns off a large number of voters, but I suspect it inspires ambivalence in many, especially when viewed as part of the whole package of this guy.

After working at the CIA, McMullin went to work at Goldman Sachs. Yep, you read that right, Goldman Sachs. NeverTrump agenda item financial market approved: check. Goldman Sachs? Really? After all the trouble Cruz had with the base because his wife worked for Goldman Sachs, did the NeverTrump vetters not recognize this as a major liability? Are they really that clueless and out of touch, or did they just not have any other options?

McMullin then left Goldman Sachs and went to work in Washington, D.C. as a Republican apparatchik. His first assignment was as senior advisor to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs. NeverTrump agenda item hawkish interventionism: check.

Later he moved on to be the Chief Policy Director for the House Republican Conference, where according to the linked Breitbart article above “he was responsible for advancing the policy agenda of the Republican leadership in the House.” NeverTrump agenda item continue status quo globalist policies: check.

McMullin is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. NeverTrump agenda item Establishment approved: check. This speaks for itself. I can’t decide which is more tone deaf under the circumstances, Goldman Sachs or the CFR.

In the past McMullin has worked as a volunteer Refugee Resettlement Officer for the United Nations. Nope, I’m not making this up. NeverTrump agenda item invade the world, invite the world: check. NeverTrump agenda item globalist approved: check.

On Facebook he has criticized Donald Trump for his stance on Muslim immigration. NeverTrump agenda item prissy moralistic PC grandstanding: check. Perhaps, just perhaps, if we had been restricting immigration we wouldn’t need that whole security state thingy, but I know. I know. That wouldn’t be “who we are” and would violate our “principles.” Apparently NeverTrump believes one of the supposed principles of the Framers was self-destructive stupidity.

Ostensibly, the purpose of NeverTrump running a candidate, other than spite, is to win enough states to prevent either Hillary or Trump from winning the necessary Electoral College majority, thus throwing the contest to the House of Representatives. This scenario is extremely implausible for many reasons, however, and the more likely actual intent is for McMullin to deprive Trump of a victory in one or more Red states that he needs to win, thus handing the election to Hillary.

This is where McMullin being a BYU grad comes in. For reasons that it would be interesting to speculate about, Mormons make up a disproportionate number of NeverTrumpers, a fact that is reflected in Trump’s relatively poor poling numbers in deep Red Utah. The transparent aim of the NeverTrumpers and their obscure Mormon candidate is to cause Trump to lose Utah and maybe some other heavily Mormon western Red states and lose the election as a result.

As I have repeatedly argued, the NeverTrump honchos have never really cared about preserving the purity of the “conservative” message no matter how deluded much of the rank and file may be on this matter.  The forces behind NeverTrump are threatened by Trump and the resonance of his campaign and unique issues cluster because his more nationalist and populist message breaks script and threatens their control over the narrative and their gravy train. NeverTrump is about keeping the GOP and “conservatism” safe for globalism, and nothing illustrates this more than the selection of a former CIA agent, Goldman Sachs employee, CFR member, PC preening open borders, foreign policy interventionist party hack as their candidate. It is hard for me to believe that NeverTrump is really this clueless and out of touch. What kind of a movement conservative bubble do you have to live in to not see McMullin’s vulnerabilities as a candidate just screaming at you? As the kids say, I’m smh.

This article was also published at Intellectual Conservative.

Evan McMullin formally kicks off presidential campaign (video)

Today, Evan McMullin, an independent candidate candidate for president running under the “Better for America” banner and with the backing of some members of the “Never Trump” movement, formally kicked off his candidacy for president of the United States in Salt Lake City, Utah (video length: 8 minutes):