Mitch Perry Report for 9.15.16 — One less #NeverTrump option for president in Florida


#NeverTrump conservatives in Florida have one less option to choose for president in November now.

Evan McMullin, a 40-year-old former CIA official from Utah, has been proposed as a conservative alternative to Trump. He was the nominee of the Independent Party in Florida, but has been removed from the ballot by the Florida Division of Elections because the Independent Party is not a recognized national party by the Federal Elections Commission — a requirement of state law to get on the ballot.

McMullin is only on the ballot in 10 states so far, making his attempt to deny both Trump and Hillary Clinton the opportunity to get 270 electoral votes less likely.

Meanwhile, Libertarian Gary Johnson‘s campaign announced Tuesday he will be the first third-party presidential candidate to appear on the ballot in all 50 states, plus Washington, D.C., since 1996. An internal McMullin memo reported on by POLITICO argues the Utah native is the much better choice for conservatives.

“With all due respect, Gary Johnson and Jill Stein are narrow-gauge candidates of limited national appeal,” the memo reads. “Whether it’s Stein’s warmed-over magical-thinking socialism and weirdness, or Gary Johnson’s astonishingly weak and dangerous positions on foreign affairs and religious liberty, no other third-party or independent candidate has the background, experience, intelligence, and policy strengths Evan McMullin brings to the national debate.”

Then again, if you’re a conservative whose main passion is making sure to deny Clinton the presidency, you ought to be happy about Johnson (and to a lesser extent Stein’s) presence in the race.

Two new battleground state polls shows the “Johnson effect” in action. A CNN poll shows Trump leading Clinton in Ohio 46-41 in Ohio with Johnson taking 8 percent, and Trump winning 47-44 in Florida, with Johnson at 6 percent.

In other news …

There was plenty coming out of yesterday’s Hillsborough County PTC meeting on new rules regulating Uber and Lyft.

The CEO of an aspiring ridesharing company who’d like to enter the Tampa market, said after the meeting that wouldn’t be happening anytime soon.

HD 60 Republican candidate Jackie Toledo blasted the agency after the vote.

Toledo’s Democratic opponent, David Singer, feels likewise, but otherwise says the two don’t see eye-to-eye on the issues whatsoever.

Singer later bashed Toledo for “ducking” a Tampa Tiger Bay debate this Friday.

Before the PTC got into the whole ridesharing thang, they got a piece of Pat Frank’s mind.

The teenage victim in a sexual abuse case blasts Hillsborough County State Attorney Mark Ober.

Mitch Perry

Mitch Perry has been a reporter with Extensive Enterprises since November of 2014. Previously, he served five years as political editor of the alternative newsweekly Creative Loafing. Mitch also was assistant news director with WMNF 88.5 FM in Tampa from 2000-2009, and currently hosts MidPoint, a weekly talk show, on WMNF on Thursday afternoons. He began his reporting career at KPFA radio in Berkeley and is a San Francisco native who has lived in Tampa since 2000. Mitch can be reached at [email protected].


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