As Utah goes, so will go the nation for Independent Evan McMullin
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It is abundantly clear that Utah Republicans refuse to settle for the lesser of two evils.

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A stunning poll conducted by Y2 Analytics shows that only 26 percent of Utah voters now support Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpDem senator says Zelensky was 'feeling the pressure' to probe Bidens 2020 Dems slam Trump decision on West Bank settlements Trump calls latest impeachment hearings 'a great day for Republicans' MORE, down 15 points from just over a month ago. At the same time, Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonDemocrats ask judge for quick ruling on McGahn subpoena Hillary Clinton: 'Every day Stephen Miller remains in the White House is an emergency' The Memo: Centrists change tone of Democratic race MORE is deeply unpopular in my home state; conservatives who have turned their back on Trump and independents uncomfortable with Clinton are rushing to support my independent campaign for president.

At 22 percent, I’m in a statistical tie with Trump and Clinton, within the margin of error. I’ve only been running for 9 weeks. But the real difference between us is that I have momentum and they don’t. Our campaign is growing rapidly. Trump’s is collapsing and Hillary’s is sputtering along hoping the election ends as soon as possible.

Let’s be honest: After the campaigns they’ve run, both Clinton and Trump have nowhere to go but down. My campaign is powered by motivated volunteers eager to give America better choices. Our support has risen to 22 percent even though only half of voters know about my campaign, whereas virtually all are familiar with Trump and Clinton. Trump and Clinton have unfavorable ratings in the 70s, while my favorable rating is over 80 percent.

While traveling across the country, I’ve heard a clear message from Republican voters: They cannot support Donald Trump.

These voters are Americans first, conservatives second, and Republicans third. They plan to vote their conscience, which means voting for the only constitutional conservative on the ballot. These voters believe in valuing all human life, limited government, free markets, and religious liberty — in a campaign that’s devoted to ideas they don’t believe in simple attacks and insults.

The voters I’ve met are also unequivocally committed to the idea that all human beings are created equal and must be treated accordingly. They reject the racism, sexism, and religious prejudice that’s defined the presidential race and has subsequently divided our nation. They believe character matters, truth is sacred, and that elected officials must serve the public interest instead of private agendas.

Utahns of all ages are determined to support a candidate who shares their values. The enthusiasm of younger voters is especially extraordinary; in their eyes, they’re not just voting for a candidate — they are starting a movement. They believe the time has come for a new generation of leadership across the United States.

Elected officials in Utah are also hearing what the voters have to say. Governor Herbert has rescinded his support for Donald Trump and so have four of the state’s six elected representatives in Washington. I hope they’ll soon join our cause, and I’d welcome their support.

Dozens of conservative senators and congressmen have also repudiated the Republican nominee. Yet, they remain a minority within the Republican Party — which is deeply disappointing. Donald Trump’s candid celebration of sexual assault and adultery should have led every Republican in the House and Senate to abandon him.

If they cannot see that such an individual has no place in our White House, then they have no business calling themselves conservatives. Some know this truth but fear Trump’s angry supporters more than they listen to their consciences.

These cynics will soon realize that Trump is determined to burn the GOP down along with his imploding campaign — which is now headed towards the greatest embarrassment in the history of the Republican Party.

The Republican Party may very well not survive the latest debacle; its true conservatives will never reconcile themselves to its unprincipled support for Trump and his supporters will never forgive the party for its alleged betrayal.

Thus, the struggle on the right will not end on Election Day. That’s why my campaign is determined not just to win Utah and as many other states as possible, but to launch an enduring movement to revive conservative principles.

When I launched my campaign two months ago, voters often asked why they should vote for an independent, rather than making a prudent choice between the lesser of two evils. The answer is that the lesser of two evils is still evil. Your vote sends an important statement about who you are, and I know that the American people are better than the candidates they are being offered by the two major parties.

Voters have also asked whether an independent campaign can still make a difference with so little time left on the clock. In a conventional year, the answer would be no. Yet in a conventional year, the Republican candidate would not be attacking his own party as vigorously as he’s attacking his Democratic opponent.

Even a few weeks ago, almost no one thought I could win Utah. Tomorrow, the movement may be spilling over into Idaho, Wyoming, Colorado, and beyond. The first signs of change are already here.

This unexpected change presents an important opportunity for conservatives in Congress. For those who have shown the courage to oppose Trump, the time has come to make an affirmative statement of principle by joining our movement. For those who have yet to summon the courage, you now have a reason to do so.

I know it will be difficult to explain why you are now abandoning your party’s nominee — long after his racism, religious prejudice, and contempt for truth have all become self-evident. The answer is that it’s never too late to do the right thing. That simple idea explains why Utah has risen up and why your state may be next.

McMullin is a former CIA operative and the Independent candidate for president. Follow him on Twitter at @Evan_McMullin.


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