Math Says Clinton Defeated Herself — Not Third-Parties

Clinton Did Not Lose from Third PartiesAlong with the fairly obvious logic & ethics-based reasons that no one but Clinton & her campaign are responsible for their dramatic Tuesday loss, math also appears to support the position that the democrats were defeated — no, not by vindictive millennials — but by their own spectacular foolishness. If we assume the results are legitimate (which we must because there’s literally no way to verify them), it is extremely unlikely that it was third-party voters who foiled the democrats’ presidential candidate and, if anything, they may have actually helped her.

So — Let’s dive into the math!

According to Math:
 Clinton Defeated Herself 

As most of you know, general elections in the United States are won by whoever is awarded 270 or more electors and those electors are almost entirely awarded on a winner-takes-all basis. That, along with the polarization that the electoral college inevitably results in, is why the results of roughly 4 out of every 5 states are pretty much already set and this race was no different. Of the states he won, below are the 10 states Trump came closest to losing, in order of closest to least close:

Wisconsin Pennsylvania Florida N. Carolina Arizona Georgia Ohio> Texas< Iowa S. Carolina

Firstly, we must ask — did third-party voters “give” Donald Trump any of these states? And — if they did — would it have made any difference?

States That Third-Parties Couldn’t Have “Stolen”

First, let’s cross out the states where the amount of third-party votes was less than the amount that Clinton needed to catch up because, even had 100% of them voted blue, Trump would still win. Let’s also cross out North Carolina, since Clinton would need more than 95% of the third-party votes, which is only a hair less impossible than the others. Now, our list of states becomes shorter:

Wisconsin Pennsylvania Florida N. Carolina Arizona Georgia Ohio Texas Iowa S. Carolina

So — How Many More Votes Would Clinton Need?

Clinton needed 42 more to reach 270 and — since Trump already has 290 from states that have been called — not only would she need 42 more but at least 21 must be from states Trump already won. Otherwise, Trump would still have more than 270 — make sense?

We’ve already eliminated states where Clinton needed more than 100% and also North Carolina, where she needed more than 95%. Now, Let’s take a look at the margins of the remaining 4…

Could Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Florida, or Arizona
Have Made Any Difference for Clinton?

Alright — let’s pretend that it’s election day and, tragically, the third-party candidates have just been eaten during a flash-alien-dinosaur-attack. Sorry, better luck next time, third parties, bye! Okay, now that third parties are gone, their voters are very sad but we’re going to cheer them up by forcing them to vote, anyway.

Jill Stein Gary Johnson Spoilers
“OMG, the damned movie lied, Gary — their vision isn’t based on movement — run!”

If we split it 50/50, obviously it doesn’t help Clinton as Trump will still be ahead of her by the same number of votes as before — so, logically, Clinton needs more than 50% to gain anything at all. Now, this is going to be an uphill battle (since Clinton notoriously struggles to win independents) but let’s see if we can make it work for her, somehow. The formula to find the number that Clinton needs in each state will be the number of votes between her & Trump plus ½ or more of all remaining third-party votes. Expressed as arithmetic, that looks like this:

0.5 × (v – m) + m + 1 = number HRC needs in that state
m = margin of Trump’s victory, v = total third-party votes

The numbers we need are in the table below, so that all of you can check my work. I took them from this website, which is super-useful.

StateThird-Party/Write-InsMargin (Votes Needed to Tie)

Third-Parties Didn’t “Steal” Arizona

It’s clear, right away, that Arizona is out of Clinton’s reach because…

0.5 × (105, 406 – 84,904) + 84,904 + 1
0.5 × (20,502) + 84,904 +1
10,251 + 84,904 + 1 = 95,156

and 95,156 ÷ 105,406 = 0.9027 or about 90.3%

She would have to take 90%, which is very, very unlikely

Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, & Florida

Here’s Hillary’s “victory-formula” for the 3 remaining states:

0.5 × (151,162 – 27,257) + 27,257 + 1 = 89,211
and 89,211 ÷ 151,162 = 0.5901 or about 59%
0.5 × (210,805 – 73,224) + 73,224 + 1 = 142,016
and 142,016 ÷ 210,805 = 0.6736 or about 67.4%
0.5 × (295,721 – 119,489) + 119,489 + 1 = 207,605
and 207,605 ÷ 295,721 = 0.7020 or about 70.2%

At first, it seems possible, at least (although Florida’s a bit of a stretch), that third-parties could could have helped Clinton win in these states — well, until you start looking at Gary Johnson’s share of the third-party votes in these states…

Hillary Clinton, Meet Gary Johnson…

Here’s a table of Gary Johnson’s share of the third-party vote:

StateThird-Party/Write-Ins TotalJohnson’s Share
Wisconsin151,162106,470 / 70.4%
Pennsylvania210,805141,476 / 67.1%
Florida295,721206,189 / 69.7%

It is indisputable that Johnson’s libertarian voter-base is strongly anti-authoritarian, young, & fall on the far-right of the political spectrum — none of which are very favorable demographics, in this case. By which I mean that it’d be difficult for even the most determined optimist to imagine that Clinton — a liberal, establishment-democrat — could even get near the 50% mark with these folks. Yet, she would need to score — not 50%, not 60% — but 70%+ of the 69.7% libertarian vote in Florida!

So, uh — bye, Florida. Also, goodbye Pennsylvania, for the same reason.

Clinton Would Have Lost
Even If Third-Parties Didn’t Exist

All that remains is Wisconsin — the Badger State.

Wisconsin Pennsylvania Florida N. Carolina Arizona Georgia Ohio Texas Iowa S. Carolina
Good luck getting any electoral votes out of this thing….

Unless you really believe that Clinton’s neoliberal message would have resonated with 7-out-of-10 libertarians — which would be a very silly thing to believe — she is left with only the faintest hope of getting 59% of Wisconsin’s third-party votes, which is unlikely. But — even if she did — it wouldn’t matter.

Remember, Trump has 290 from the states that were already called and so Clinton’s imaginary third-party voters have to grab 21 votes from him. Wisconsin has 10.

So — even if she took 59% there and won 20 electoral votes in New Hampshire & Michigan (which haven’t been called yet) — she’d only have 30 — she needs 42. And even if we just invented 12 more out of thin air, it still wouldn’t matter because she must get 21 of them from Trump, which is now impossible — at best, she can grab 10. Being very, very, very generous with the third-party votes that we give to Clinton, the absolute best-case scenario that third-party voters could have given her would be:

Donald Trump 280
Hillary Clinton  258

If Some Third-Parties Had Done a Little Better,
They Actually May Have Almost Saved Her!

Let’s take this a step further — look at Utah, a red state which Trump nearly lost because of the libertarian-ish independent, Evan McMullen! If he had done just a tiny bit better, he might’ve stolen it from Trump, which would have given Clinton another 6 electoral votes, which only brings her total to 264!

To Sum It All Up

DNC Top Donors
The democrats chose their rich friends over us.

It’s time for democrats to face the music and accept the fact that Hillary Clinton and the corrupt DNC have no one to blame but themselves. They ran an awful candidate in a fear-based campaign that quite possibly risked starting World War III — and it backfired on them.

It backfired because the DNC failed — no, not failed — the DNC arrogantly refused to listen to their own voter-base and chose to value the unpopular, neoliberal agenda of their wealthy donors more than their own people who they threw under the bus.

That’s what cost Clinton the election. That & that, alone — not Trump, who did as badly as Mitt Romney in 2012, and definitely not third-parties who simply listened to the voters who the DNC stupidly & arrogantly discarded.

I don’t feel the slightest bit bad for Clinton or the DNC — the only people that deserve any sympathy here are their voters who were betrayed for the 1%…

In solidarity,
John Laurits

P.S. If you have a minute & you’re interested in getting more real journalists on the ground at Standing Rock, please take a look at this fundraising campaign to send me to North Dakota to report on the struggle…

Other Recent Articles by John Laurits
Occupy Inauguration: #SeeYouInDC (11/9)
The Land Beneath the Pipeline (11/8)
Ohio Outlaws Citizen-Led Exit-Polling & Election Observation (11/4)
The US Media is as Guilty as the Police at Standing Rock
Progressives, Greens, & Berniecrats: Unify or the Movement Will Break
False Story Alert: #PodestaEmails Do *Not* Show Sanders Was Paid Off!
US Claims Russia is Influencing the Election by Telling the Truth?
How the 1% Rigged the Debates Against 3rd-Parties (9/20)
How Both Parties Ignore the Majority
How To Destroy Democracy: A Guide to the Electoral College

Why Sanders-Supporters Are Mad (& Why You Should Be, Too!) (8/22)
Why Aren’t Americans More Infuriated? (8/16)
From the Heart of America: #NeverGiveUp


*If you appreciated this article, please consider buying John a cup of coffee at this link to his PayPal or, if you find yourself enjoying his articles often & if you have the means, consider pledging a monthly 1$ or $3, using John’s new Patreon page…



  1. John, did we ever get a full primary tally. I have someone telling me now that by today’s count, Hill is 2.2million popular votes ahead of Trump and still ballots uncounted out there. Do you know anything about this?


    • I have not heard that number but it sounds suspiciously high — last I saw, the margin was around a half of a million. Rest assured, I’ll be doing an article to break down the results when the dust settles a bit more 🙂 There’re too many moving parts at the moment and too many unknowns


  2. Clinton’s typically wishy-washy stance on marijuana legalization certainly did not help her with young Libertarians. Democrats need to look in the mirror and clean house. But I still think the only thing that will force the 2-party system out of gridlock is robust 3rd-party representation. Every other country in the world with progressive programs like Medicare-for-all and free or subsidized college education has more than 2 parties. It’s not just a coincidence. Sorry if I’ve posted that here before, but whatever, it bears repeating.


  3. hillory had no message but doing a third term for Obama and for bill Clionton –TWO WORST OF ALL PRESIDENTS plus sticking to Obama care as is – she tried to put this through whenn bill was president and failed almost as badly as Obama = plus she and bill have killed Americans and should be tried in ope3n court with Obama. the silent majority of America has spoken and they are not of one color ,breed or religion, they bare imagrants like the rest of us but they realize that they have to pay for these free loaders the want to be cared for. if you havent noticed 15% of the silent Majority are now the ethnic people of the past to mugrate here aND ARE WILLING TOP WORK And opay taxes and purchase homs for them selves . they are now finding out what a burden they had put on americas people and now they are pAart of them. wait four years and see how mwanty more of those rioters will workm tom get legal and see what they do when it is their turn to help pay for the free bee;s


  4. I saw reports where a number of provisional ballots with Jill’s name on them were being counted for Hillary, and she still couldn’t win….


    • I voted for Jill, her platform is the most progressive people’s presidential platform in history. There is no way I would of voted for Johnson, Trump or Clinton. Again Jills platform is like we would all be living in paradise if people would see it, she wins.



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