For These Coloradans, A Third Party Vote Is Not A Throwaway

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<p>(AP Photo/Brennan Linsley)</p>
<p>“I Voted” stickers at a polling station on the campus of the University of Colorado, in Boulder, Nov. 6, 2012.</p>
Photos: Jill Stein, Gary Johnson (AP Photos)
Jill Stein, left, of the Green Party, and Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party, are both running for president.

Nothing ignites a firestorm on Facebook quite like a post about voting for a third party candidate this election. Commenters either celebrate that voter for their convictions or blast them for throwing away their vote.

CPR News spoke with a number of Coloradans who will not vote for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton or Republican Donald Trump at the top of the ticket. Many of them said "I'm voting my conscience."

Related: Third Parties See Increased Interest From Colorado Voters Seeking Options

Edgar Antillon of Denver co-owns Guns For Everyone, a handgun training company. He plans to vote for Libertarian Gary Johnson. Erin Dougherty will be voting in her first presidential election. Dougherty, who graduated from Denver's East High School last year, felt the Bern during the Democratic primary, but says she'll vote for Jill Stein of the Green Party.

Antillon and Dougherty spoke with Colorado Matters host Ryan Warner.

Related: Hey Coloradans, This Businessman Is One Of Your 20 Other Choices For President

Other voter responses:

Patrick Albright of Wellington says he wants "constitutional restraint" from a president and thinks Libertarian Gary Johnson is the candidate who can do that.

Just because [Donald Trump] has an R behind his name doesn't mean his policies are right. I don't care about winning the Super Bowl, and my team the Republicans winning. I have a vision for the country that uses the constitution as a guide, as a restraint and not an obstacle to try to get around.

Alex Geffre of Denver says he'll vote for the Green Party's Jill Stein.

As the representative of the Green Party, she is fighting for renewable energy and new strategies to combat climate change ... Honesty and integrity are also extremely important to me. It may be that the smear campaigns of both Trump and Clinton have affected me, but I do not believe that either candidate is honest or trustworthy. Everything that I have heard from Jill Stein has struck me as sincere.

Joanna Zuck of Longmont says she switched from the GOP to the Libertarian Party in 2008.

If those of us who have thoughtfully addressed the issues would vote the way we really believe, instead of the way we are told to, we could make a difference. So I began to vote my conscience (military intervention in other countries is a huge issue for me).

Cleo Dioletis of Denver was a long-time Democrat, but switched to the Green Party when Bernie Sanders did not get the Democratic nomination.

I don’t think I’ve left the Democratic Party, as much as the Democratic Party has left me.

Timothy Kunin of Denver says he's voted in every election since he was 18. This year, Johnson is his pick for president.

I think you're throwing away your vote if you're not voting for who you want. The lesser of two evils is still evil.

Vicki Lim of Pueblo says she's disillusioned with the two-party system and will vote for Johnson.

I don't like what either of the parties has been doing. And I really don't see a lot of difference between the two of them. They say there's a difference. But when they get into office, there doesn't seem to be one ... I find it most unfortunate that the media, including NPR, really only focus on the two parties. It has really limited the debate on issues that are important to this country.

Daniel Lutz of Clear Creek County served in Iraq. He supports Johnson.

I love Gary's non-interventionist stance. It is the primary reason I am voting for him ... I have been on these battlefields and it is my opinion that we need to stop.

Michael Murphy of Westminster was torn between Stein and Johnson.

I personally like Jill Stein's platform more than Gary Johnson's. Though if he looks to be ahead, I'll vote for him. But for me, this election, those are the only options I'll be considering.