The News
The News
Tuesday 24 of May 2022

The McMullin Mulligan

McMullin is starting off about 12 laps behind Trump and Clinton in the sprint for the White House,photo: Wikipedia
McMullin is starting off about 12 laps behind Trump and Clinton in the sprint for the White House,photo: Wikipedia
The 40-year-old Mormon conservative is judicious, articulate and likable

After seeing what the two major establishment political parties (and their own electoral ineptness) had produced as options for the future president of the most powerful nation on Earth (i.e., a ranting, ethnocentric, megalomaniac who seems to be oblivious to the very existence of the U.S. Constitution and who says he won’t rule out dropping a nuclear bomb on Europe; and deceitful and irresponsible former secretary of state who recklessly used a private email server to receive and send classified and top secret communications and whose carelessness led to the loss of four American lives in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012), U.S. voters were desperately looking for a Mulligan, a do-over, a way to undo the Republic and Democratic primaries and conventions and start from scratch.

Surely, there had to be an alternative to the terrifying scenario of either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton in the White House.

But, no, other than voting for “none of the above,” the two-party U.S. political system had managed to pare down the choices to Trump and Clinton.

That is, until last week, when a little-known, highly qualified third choice showed up in the person of Evan McMullin when the former CIA officer announced he was launching an independent bid for the U.S. presidency.

With less than 100 days to go before the Nov. 8 elections, McMullin is America’s Mulligan.

The dark horse candidate with impressive credentials is a Wharton graduate who has alternately worked as a CIA intelligence operative, a Goldman Sachs banking associate, a senior advisor to the House Committee on Foreign Affairs and the chief policy director for the House Republican Conference.

The 40-year-old Mormon conservative is judicious, articulate and likable.

Right out of high school, this Utah native served as a missionary in Brazil.

And after graduating from Brigham Young University in 2001, he worked in Amman, Jordan, as a volunteer refugee resettlement officer for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.

During his decade as an undercover intelligence agent, he worked on counterterrorism and information-gathering operations in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia.

Yes, McMullin is the perfect do-over for distraught voters, and he has all the qualifications to handle both national and international relations, as well as to promote economic growth.

But McMullin does have his drawbacks as a candidate.

Handpicked by the newly established Better for America (BFA) organization spearheaded by John Kingston, a multi-millionaire Republican donor who previously endorsed Mitt Romney, McMullin is a Johnny-come-late who is going to have a serious uphill battle just getting on the ticket in at least 27 states in which he has already missed the ballot deadline.

Moreover, he has little previous name recognition.

In an ABC interview, he even admitted that he wished he had entered the race earlier, but maintained that “it is never too late to do the right thing.”

But the low-key, soft-spoken McMullin, who is starting off about 12 laps behind Trump and Clinton in the sprint for the White House, said that now is the time for “for something new,” and he felt he could offer that as a candidate that would respond to the American people and hear their grievances.

Still, his chances of winning are remote.

But his innate charm, vivid intellect and underdog appeal might just win him votes and turn the U.S. elections upside-down.

So far, the entire bipartisan campaign has been a rollercoaster ride of outrageous gaffs and deplorable name-calling, with very little substance when it comes to platforms and policy statements.

McMullin is the alternative.

As for me, I think I want to take a Mulligan.

Thérèse Margolis can be reached at [email protected]