Republican Senator Ben Sasse has a message for America: We can do better than this — right?
In an open letter to "the majority of America," which Sasse posted on Facebook late Wednesday night, the Republican criticized both of the country's likely presidential choices, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, openly questioning "why the nation that put a man on the moon can't find a healthy leader who can take us forward together."
Sasse's letter comes just a day after Trump became his party's presumptive nominee. The GOP leadership, particularly Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus, is working to coalesce the party around their candidate.
But Sasse, a freshman from Nebraska who earned a national name for his social media tirades against Trump earlier this year, isn't having it. Sasse wrote that he had spent the day ignoring calls from "party bosses and politicos" to get behind Trump.
I assume this is a parody account? — Ben Sasse (@BenSasse)May 4, 2016
And unlike some of his fellow anti-Trump Republicans, he isn't interested in jumping on the Clinton bandwagon either.
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Sasse noted that Clinton and Trump are two of the most unpopular candidates for president in US history. "There are dumpster fires in my town more popular than these two 'leaders,'" he wrote.
"With Clinton and Trump, the fix is in. Heads, they win; tails, you lose," Sasse added. "Why are we confined to these two terrible options? This is America. If both choices stink, we reject them and go bigger. That's what we do."
'There are dumpster fires in my town more popular than these two 'leaders''
After speaking to constituents at a Walmart in Fremont, Nebraska, earlier Wednesday, Sasse said he believes that there's a huge appetite for another choice in the presidential race: a third party candidate.
"Why shouldn't America draft an honest leader who will focus on 70 percent solutions for the next four years? You know… an adult?" he wrote.
Sasse listed a number of a requirements for this new leader. The candidate should be someone who has not "spent his/her life in politics either buying politicians or being bought," who won't "stitch together a coalition based on anger but wanted to take a whole nation forward," and who will promise to serve just one term "as a care-taker problem-solver for this messy moment."
For those wondering, Sasse is not suggesting himself as the candidate. Although he didn't specifically rule himself out, Sasse argued that a third party candidate would have to "campaign 24/7 for the next sixth months," which wouldn't be possible for someone with young kids like himself.
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"This really shouldn't be that hard," Sasse wrote.
Sasse did not name any alternative candidates.
The senator is hardly the first person in this election cycle to bring up the idea of drafting a third party candidate. So far, none of this alleged saviors have taken the bait. In part, that's because running as a third party candidate is hard — just ask Gary Johnson who's running as a Libertarian for the third time this year.
It's difficult for independent candidates to get attention, particularly as they're usually excluded from debates. And with both parties planning to spend heavily in the summer and fall to elect either Clinton or Trump, it will be expensive. There's a reason Bernie Sanders decided to run as a Democrat, rather than an independent.
But Sasse believes that with the high negative ratings for each candidate, that a larger number of Americans will seek an alternative this year than they have before. And the two parties haven't been working well enough for the average American to inspire much loyalty, he argues.
"They bicker like children about tiny things, and yet they can't even identify the biggest issues we face. They're like a couple arguing about what color to paint the living room, and meanwhile, their house is on fire," he wrote.
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