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Ohio is notoriously known as one of the most vital battleground states in the country. It is a fact that no Republican candidate has ever won the general election without winning this key state. That statistic alone exemplifies the importance of this state for both parties.

Dating back to 1856, the Republican candidates have dominated the state of Ohio with 28 wins over the liberals with just ten. The wrinkle in this years’ election, which could decide the state electoral vote for Ohio, is the marginally growing popularity of third party libertarian, Gary Johnson.

According to an article in the Cleveland “If Johnson appears on the ballot, he could make a difference in a close race between Democrat Hillary Clinton and Republican Donald Trump – recent survey’s show Johnson polling between 5 percent and 12 percent in Ohio, a key swing state.”

The challenge’s are certainly there for the third party however. According to the Denver Post, “third parties start at a major disadvantage. They have little money compared with Democrats and Republicans, often are blocked from participating in debates and can have trouble recruiting high-level political strategists.”

These challenges for third party candidates like Gary Johnson suggest that the two party systems that our democratic system is currently operating with, is likely to stay that way for the 2016 election. With that being said, if Johnson continues to gain popularity, he may likely run again in the 2020 election and might find more success in states like Ohio, which seems to have its doubts on the direction that Hilary or Trump will take our country.

Despite the small margin of growing popularity that the third party has acquired, according to a Fox News poll, Ohio still remains with Trump leading by a small margin over Clinton by 5 points with a 3.5 margin of error.

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