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In “Treehouse of Horror VII,” a 1996 episode of “The Simpsons,” Bob Dole and Bill Clinton, the Republican and Democratic candidates for the presidency that year, are kidnapped by aliens. Two aliens return to earth impeccably disguised as Dole and Clinton. Only Homer — who has also been kidnapped — knows that the supposed candidates are in fact from outer space. He manages to return to earth and, in front of a crowd, reveals the candidate-impersonators’ true identities. The crowd gasps. “It’s true, we are aliens,” says one of them to the crowd. “But what are you going to do about it? It’s a two-party system. You have to vote for one of us.” The crowd look at one another in dismay before someone says: “Well, I believe I’ll vote for a third-party candidate.” “Go ahead, throw your vote away,” says the other alien, laughing.

— from Oliver Wiseman’s essay in “Standpoint” magazine, “Unconventional Convention”

HT: George Grant