I don’t think the phrase “lesser of two evils” sufficiently captures how catastrophic one of these Republicans being elected president would be over literally any Democrat.
Millions would lose health care.
LGBT rights would become a major target, thanks to current right wing “freedom of religion” paranoia.
The meager corporate regulations Obama put in place would be replaced with absolute lassaiz-faire policies.
You want gun nut laws passed federally? You got em! White people will be able to carry more weapons around than ever.
And, most frightening to me of all, you would have at least four years of a right wing president choosing replacements for Supreme Court justices should any of them leave the court in that time. Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Stephen Breyer, two of the most reliably progressive judges in the court, are both north of 76. Replace either with a conservative, and you have a court so right wing that it might very well be willing to overturn every single landmark decision for civil rights in the last 50 years. Don’t believe me? The right wing of the court are all “originalists”, who think the Constitution needs to be interpreted strictly as the Founding Fathers would see it. They don’t believe in rights to privacy or that equal protections are Constitutionally protected. Those two things have been the basis of almost every major decision in favor of civil rights from Roe v. Wade to the nationwide legalization of same-sex marriage.
I’m not saying to be lazy and support Democrats just because. The Democratic Party is generally terrible. The candidates are slim pickings and even Sanders has his share of fuck ups (although I remain convinced that as President he would do more to help this country than anyone else, and it’s not close). Ideally we’d have more options than a party that would be laughed at if it claimed to be leftist in any other country. But the stakes here are too real for too many people for me to cling that that level of idealism.
My point is that even with the most boilerplate bad Democratic candidate as the alternative (I’m not even talking Hillary here, I’m thinking 2000 Al Gore uninspiring) it’s not a “lesser of two evils” decision; it’s a choice between stubbing your toe and jumping into an incinerator.