The Slatest

Gary Johnson Says He’s Having an “Aleppo Moment” When He Can’t Name Favorite World Leader

Guys, we need to talk about Gary Johnson.

If you hadn’t noticed, the former governor of New Mexico and current Libertarian Party candidate for president is polling kind of well nationally, grabbing anywhere from six-to-ten points depending on the poll and the day. That adds up to a lot of Americans on Election Day. Millions of them. The whole third party tent thing is totally working for him. That’s fine. Seems like a decent man. Digs liberty and whatnot. But, guys, has anyone noticed he doesn’t really know anything? Like about other countries and stuff?

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On Wednesday, MSNBC’s Chris Matthews hosted a town hall with Johnson and his running mate former Massachusetts Governor Bill Weld and the topic of discussion turned to foreign policy. You’ll remember just three weeks ago, Johnson was asked on Morning Joe about the besieged city of Aleppo in Syria and what he would do to alter its course. Johnson responded, feebly: “And what is Aleppo?” Ooooooh, that’s going to leave a mark. Donald Trump probably could have answered that, albeit poorly, but he could have at least attempted a shot on goal. Johnson tried to explain his drawing a blank later, but it was bad. Cringingly bad.

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With several weeks under Johnson’s belt to prepare for gotcha questions like: “What is your foreign policy?” Matthews lobbed in the personal essay of foreign policy questions when he asked: “Who’s your favorite foreign leader?” When Johnson gave him a look indicating that he did not, in fact, speak Swahili, Matthews broadened the already broad question. “Just name one foreign leader you respect and look up to… Anybody… Anywhere.” “I guess I’m having an Aleppo moment in the former president of Mexico,” Johnson stammered back. “But I’m giving you the whole world!” Matthews said. Johnson finally settled on “the former president of Mexico” as his favorite foreign leader.

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