In my in-box this morning I found an interesting contrast in reactions to my column rooting for a Republican defeat in congressional elections next week. Response No. 1 (from a Townhall reader):
Thanks for pointing out that the emperor has no clothes. Too often conservatives are just GOP cheerleaders, when they should be independent. (I am a libertarian-leaning conservative who belongs to neither party.)
Response No. 2:
Fellow libertarian movement members,
Did you all notice in the latest bash Republicans piece by Jacob Sullum he doesn't even mention anywhere libertarian Republican candidates for public office this year?
Record number of libertarian Republican candidates this year nationwide, and Sullum doesn't even take notice.
One can presume that Sullum is wanting good libertarian Republicans to go down to defeat, as well as the entire GOP.
Ron Paul? Guess ole' Sullum would like to see him defeated.
Butch Otter in Idaho? Ah golly gee, we don't need a libertarian Governor in the Potato State.
Sarah Palin? Well, same goes for Alaska. Better to have a statist like Tony Knowles than a genuine libertarian as Governor of the Nation's largest state.
Right there in Sullum's backyard of California, Tom McClintock, a longtime libertarian hero, could very well win the Lt. Governorship. But ole' Sullum could care less. He'd rather see McClintock be thrown out with the bath water. He's a Republican after all.
No less than Five (!!!!!), Libertarian Party members have secured the GOP line in Vermont for State House. Yup, you guessed it, according to pseudo-libertarian Sullum, "Let them go down to defeat. You stick your name on the Republican line, EVEN IF YOUR A LIBERTARIAN, you still should lose."
With friends like Sullum, who needs enemies?
And we wonder why our beloved libertarian movement never wins.
Since the second message seems to be an open letter meant for public consumption, I guess I can reveal that it came from Eric Dondero, "a US Navy Veteran, former Libertarian Party National Committeeman, fmr. Senior Aide to US Congressman Ron Paul R-TX, and Founder of the Republican Liberty Caucus." Dondero also is proprietor of the Mainstream Libertarians website, which recently got excited about the fact that Uncle Kracker has joined fellow white rapper Kid Rock as a known Republican. They (the Mainstream Libertarians, but maybe Uncle Kracker and Kid Rock too) are "Fiscally Conservative, Socially Tolerant & Pro-Defense!"
I was struck by the fact that the self-identified conservative was more willing to ditch the GOP than the self-identified libertarian, which is the opposite of what you might expect. In any case, I said nothing in my column about voting against libertarians; I simply said I was looking forward to Republicans' losing control of the House and/or Senate because 1) they deserve to and 2) a divided federal government may result in some restraint on spending and executive powers. Is it possible to achieve that switch without turning out any libertarians? Since libertarian members of Congress are rarer than white rappers, I'd say yes. Ron Paul's seat is not one of the tossups, and no one else springs to mind. If Paul were my congressman, I'd be happy to vote for him.
I said nothing at all about state races. Otter seems pretty good to me. Sarah Palin looks better than her Democratic opponent, and she's got to be better than the current governor, a rabid drug warrior intent on recriminalizing marijuana possession. Given her views on gay marriage and gambling, however, I think calling her a "genuine libertarian" overstates the case a bit. But what would I, a pseudo-libertarian, know?
Finally, I did not realize that Tom McClintock was living in my backyard (although that could explain why our dog keeps jumping the fence). I'd love to see McClintock as lieutenant governor; I'd even vote for him if I lived in California.