Despite best efforts from Russian hackers and WikiLeaks, Hillary Clinton has seen a bump in the polls, and Gary Johnson may be partially responsible. Once thought to be the underdog of the presidential election, Johnson has seen his poll numbers drop after numerous gaffes on the campaign trail, according to The Hill.
Many dejected Bernie Sanders fans have switched over to the Johnson camp, despite claims from their fearless leader Johnson isn’t all he’s cracked up to be. While campaigning, Johnson was asked about his thoughts regarding Aleppo, which has been the victim of airstrikes in the Syrian conflict. Johnson drew a blank. He owned up to his gaffe, but it was the beginning of a trend.
Johnson later admitted he didn’t have a favorite global leader and awkwardly flaunted his lack of geographical knowledge. All of those gaffes have hurt him in the polls, as The Hill reported he hasn’t hit double digit figures since September 25. Pollster John Zogby told The Hill it’s normal for a third party candidate to see their numbers drop as the election approaches, but Johnson hasn’t done himself any favors:
“Johnson had settled in that 10 or 11 percent support range, and now it looks like he’s settled lower into that 7 or 8 point range. Some of this is the natural order of things. In competitive races, the third-party candidate always declines, and certainly Clinton has seen a small rise because of it.”
And to pour more salt on the wound, former Ralph Nader supporters are warning Johnson fans not to make the same mistake they did. Kurt Ehrenberg, who served as Sanders’ New Hampshire political director, told The Huffington Post he voted for Nader in 2000 and regretted it. And he is using his power of hindsight to educate voters:
“I try to talk to these folks about my vote for Ralph Nader and how much I regret that. Part of what is going on with these voters is they’re mostly younger people who had very little experience with electoral politics before the Bernie campaign And their main opponent all through the primaries is Hillary Clinton. So they really continue to view Hillary Clinton as sort of the enemy when clearly, to me, and clearly if you listen to Bernie Sanders, she’s not the enemy.”
Johnson continues to see his poll numbers drop, and another media gaffe may possibly be the final nail in the coffin for his campaign.